India has witnessed rapid economic growth in recent years, but this hasn’t led to a resultant increase in new jobs. The situation is made worse with a near exodus of youth from rural areas to urban in search of employment. In the wake of the changing economic environment, it is necessary to focus on developing and advancing skills, especially digital skills. And who better than business solution software companies in taking Digital India forward. It has taken India seven decades to realise the importance of skill development in national growth. Vocational training and skilling has not been given its due and the mainstream education system has not been able to meet the demands of the growing economy. A few reports indicate that only 10% of the Indian workforce receives any kind of skill training. Thankfully, this is changing.
The changing demographic profile with 54% of the population under 25 years of age, the rising aspirations of our youth who seek better jobs and higher incomes, and the growing requirements of industry for an efficient, well-trained workforce have contributed to a focus on skill development. The ministry of skill development and entrepreneurship is working overtime to streamline skill development initiatives, and its flagship scheme, the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana, appears to be doing well. But the government alone cannot handle the gigantic task of skilling millions every year. If India is to achieve the target of being home to a skilled workforce of 500 million by 2022, we, as stakeholders in the economy, ought to be actively involved in imparting training, especially digital training, to our people. The way forward lies in taking initiatives to achieve these humongous targets in the right ‘scale’ and ‘speed’.
Marg’s marg darshan
We, at Marg ERP, take pride as India’s fastest growing integrated business management and inventory application software provider, and look forward to being a government ally in building a skilled and employable India. For instance, post-GST, SMEs and MSMEs were seen struggling to switch over to digital technology and to the new tax regime, and here we have been playing a role in helping them migrate to the new digital system. We’ve set up 500 academies across India for training personnel in software inventory and accounting, and plan to scale this up to 2,000 by 2018. Clearly, business solution software companies with a futuristic vision can pitch in to fulfil India’s requirement of digital empowerment through their active involvement with Skill India.
At the same time, the government needs to encourage multi-stakeholder partnerships to impart relevant skills. Such partnerships are already generating interest in the business solution software industry. Perhaps the government could incentivise such efforts with tax concessions and grants for ‘scaling’ and ‘speeding’ up operations.
Private players with a proven track record need to be encouraged to take on an active role in government’s digital skill initiatives. If the government can rope in reputed business solution software firms in the task, India’s digital dream can fast become a reality.
The author is CMD, Sales & Marketing, Marg ERP, the integrated business solution software provider. Views are personal