Role of minorities, women critical for India to attract talent, says Global Talent Competitiveness Index

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Published: January 25, 2020 1:23:16 PM

India’s poor ability to attract and retain talent is its greatest challenge even as the country jumped eight places to 72nd rank from 80 last year in its ability to grow, attract and retain talent.

India was ranked third after the US and China in terms of AI skills penetration.

India’s poor ability to attract and retain talent is its greatest challenge even as the country jumped eight places to 72nd rank from 80 last year in its ability to grow, attract and retain talent, according to the Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2020. The annual report, which ranked 132 countries this year in their talent competitiveness, said India needs to strengthen the role of minorities and women in order to raise the level of Internal Openness to attract talent. The report defines Internal Openness with respect to the tolerance of minorities, immigrants,  opportunity to improve their economic situation through their personal efforts regardless of the socioeconomic status of their parents, female graduates, and disparities between men and women in health, knowledge, and living standards.

For retaining talent, “India’s low scores in the indicators that relate to the quality of life (lifestyle) fall well short of its more positive showing in sustainability,” the report said. The report, which measures countries based on six pillars — enable, attract, grow, and retain talent along with vocation and technical skills, and global knowledge skills — ranked India 44 in growing talent — highest position among six pillars. “India’s key strength relates to growing talent, primarily by virtue of the possibilities for lifelong learning and access to growth opportunities. Its highest-ranked sub-pillar, however, is employability, but the ability to match labour market demand and supply stands in contrast to the country’s poor mid-level skills which result in a mediocre score in vocational and technical skills,” it said.

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“India is constantly investing in skill development and robust digitalization. It is as imperative for the corporates to build comprehensive digital business strategies as it is for the talent to be adaptable to rapid transformations and relevant for the new requirements,” said Marco Valsecchi, Country Manager, and Managing Director, The Adecco Group India in a statement. The index also ranked 155 cities globally for their talent competitiveness. India’s Bengaluru, Mumbai, Gurugram, Delhi, Kolkata were the cities ranked at 66, 81, 120, 125, 133 positions respectively. Hyderabad (108) and Pune (118) were surprisingly ranked ahead of Gurugram and Delhi.

Among the new features introduced in the report is the technology adoption that provides a measure of how countries use and invest in new technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI). The report ranked India third after the US and China in terms of AI skills penetration. “It’s worth noting that governments and companies must plan to retain the talent in the region. For example, approximately 20 years ago India positioned itself as a general Delivery Center of IT. Looking at how high the country is ranked in (AI skills penetration), it is clear the strategy worked,” the report said. Countries topping the 2020 index are Switzerland, the US, Singapore while others including Brazil, China, Pakistan, the UK, Russia, Bangladesh were ranked at 80, 42, 106, 12, 48, and 124 respectively.

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