Re-skill and Up Skill: A Mantra for Professionals to Stay Relevant in a Volatile Economy

This turmoil has brought painful challenges to many around the world, though this has been a ‘wake-up’ call for many to ensure that learning continues to stay relevant, that will aid to undertake any tasks or even face circumstances confidently through the ‘Power of Knowledge’.


The aftermath of the COVID-19 has impacted every industry at an unprecedented scale, except the technological landscape that gained momentum with emerging technologies and innovation, which are driven by new challenges, to meet the growing demand of both individual and businesses, now than ever before. Technology has become the catalyst for change around the globe with business leaders and government weaving strategies through digital transformation to sustain the economy. Therefore, it is of paramount importance for professionals to prioritise learning and skilling that can help them ‘sail through or scale up’, during these testing times.

Re-skill and up skill is now the modus operandi to stay relevant in a dynamic job market

The Skill Seekers (including IT-Working Professionals, Graduates, and Students who are pursuing graduation) should be open to embrace change and have the willingness to unlearn and relearn to meet the ever changing dynamics in the market place. The National Sample Survey (NSS) and Periodic Labour Force Surveys (PLFS) have estimated that an overall 136 million government and private sector jobs are at risk in post-corona India. Therefore, it is important to have the right blend of technical skills combined with soft skills and good understanding of business domain to advance in your career.

Upskilling would not only improve their chances of employability but would also increase the scope of jobs they could apply based on the skills they have acquired over a period of time. For example, in the case of engineers, doctors and commerce graduates learning and exposure to data science will open up a whole host of opportunities driven by technology transition in their respective fields. Cyber security is another emerging area which is witnessing massive growth and recruitment. AWS, Azure, DevOps, RPA, Digital marketing and analytics are are some of the other key areas which are growing exponentially.

In the modern era driven by technology, graduates should learn coding along with the core subjects irrespective of the domain to stay relevant in the current technology revolution. One is witnessing major tech trends even in the fields of agriculture, finance, health driven by industry 4.0, and therefore it is imperative to upskill to stay relevant and make a meaningful contribution.

The ownership of learning is also a responsibility of the employee by proactively upskilling oneself, in addition to the training programs provided by the employer, so that they can easily adjust to a dynamic business environment and reduce risk of losing jobs. Skilling should be considered as an investment and not as a cost in ones career progression in today’s context. Additionally, companies should also develop a strategy to guide employees to develop digital and cognitive capabilities that will enable them to adapt and make them self-reliant. The employers should also envision a long-term benefit and leverage this opportunity to commit on reskilling and up skilling that can strengthen the workforce for future disruptions.

Making Smart Choices to Re-skill and Up Skill

With the wide adoption of remote learning including K-12, higher education and professional programs tech has reshaped the educational realms in India. As per reports, between a span of 2014 to 2019, there were more than 4,450 detach start-ups that were launched. With this interminable choice of learning programs offered by a plethora of EdTech brands in India, it has become deeply challenging for skill seekers to make the right decision, while enrolling for a program.

In a skill seekers' journey it is very important to choose the right program, which can enhance their skills that are suitable to their job profile, which will also help them to adapt to changing business requirements. Once the skill seeker identifies the right program, it is also important to connect to the best training companies that offer quality. Quality is determined by the relevance of content, which offers a good blend between learning, real-time projects and use cases that would bring in a holistic perspective in bringing about industry readiness. To choose the right program, it is imperative that the educators take it in their stride to create a transparent learning ecosystem focused on quality assurance through key considerations--- Quality, Accessibility and Affordability.

Lack of quality educators is also another pressing concern in India, which is a larger problem, coupled with the infrastructure and curriculum. Skilling infrastructure is not adequate, which is clearly reflective in the concerns that recruiters have while hiring students from colleges. There is a glaring gap between the actual skills required and education imparted to them, due to which even in normal situation it is an unsettling concern for job seekers as well as employers to find a candidate, who has relevant skillset that is suitable for the role in the company. The companies have to take the responsibility and invest significantly in training fresh graduates to ensure that they are skilled to thrive in the workplace.

This turmoil has brought painful challenges to many around the world, though this has been a ‘wake-up’ call for many to ensure that learning continues to stay relevant, that will aid to undertake any tasks or even face circumstances confidently through the ‘Power of Knowledge’. Above all, a skill seeker should learn the art of unlearning and learning new skills.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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Re-skill Up Skill economy Rameswar Mandali SKILL MONKS


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