250 million people need to be skilled by 2020

Written by Vikram Chaudhary | Updated: Sep 17 2012, 09:30am hrs
AISECT, established in 1985, is among Indias leading IT training and educational services network with over 8,000 franchisee centres in the country. AISECTs mission is to reach out to the remotest corner of India and promote ICT-based training and services to empower people, generate employment for the youth and unfold entrepreneurship based initiatives to create an inclusive society. Siddharth Chaturvedi, the director of AISECT, in the interaction with FEs Vikram Chaudhary, shares AISECTs engagement in the areas of skill development and training.

How did AISECT come about

In the early 1980s, IT was becoming a powerful technological tool in cities, having the potential to change peoples lives altogether. However, 80% of Indias population was oblivious to the progress and advancement of urban India and the rest of the developed world in this field. So, my father Santosh Kumar Choubey, along with a few like-minded people, formed AISECT in 1985 with the intent of reaching out to the remotest corner of India to promote ICT-based training and services to empower people, generate employment and unfold entrepreneurship-based initiatives to create an inclusive society.

What is your vision

Out vision is to harness the power of IT for the benefit of the less privileged population. AISECT is primarily engaged in the areas of skill development and training, development of models and teaching methodologies to strengthen the non-formal education sector, services dissemination across semi-urban and rural India and execution of large e-governance projects for the central and state governments.

What is your role in correcting the mismatch between the availability of human skills and the requirement

Over the years, skill gap has become a growing concern. India is lagging behind developed countries and even countries like China when it comes to skilling. Only 2% of our workforce has formal vocational skills. Further, it is estimated that to benefit from the demographic dividend that India boasts about an additional 250 million people need to be skilled by 2020. AISECTs widespread network offers a wide range of vocational education courses with the objective of addressing the skill gaps pertinent to the emerging needs of a rapidly growing economy. We have also been associated with the central and state governments for various skill development and capacity building programmes. We recently tied up with the National Skill Development Corporation with an aim to skill about 1.3 million youth within 10 years. This partnership with NSDC is another step for AISECT towards reaching its goal of empowering rural India through ICT training, education and services.

Which industry are you specifically catering to

We are targeting the unorganised sector as a whole. Within this segment, the roles of office assistants, data entry operators, cashiers, salesmen, among others, are in demand. Our courses classified under the sectors of IT, hardware & networking, BFSI, teacher training and retail are designed in such a way that a person can handle any of these functions with ease.

How big are the jobs in rural and semi-urban India

Lower costs of production, cheaper cost of manpower, low real estate costs, increasing levels of education and greater loyalties are increasingly making rural/semi-urban areas attractive for companies to set up shop. The government also, with its massive digitisation projects across all departments, is providing lucrative job opportunities for entry level IT professionals. The opportunities have reached a threshold value and are estimated to grow rapidly.