Dr. S. K. Sinha
Professor, Department of Textile Technology,
National Institute of Technology, Jalandhar
Whether it is for a new career opportunity or about moving into a new role, upgrading skills can increase one’s chances of reaching their career goals and improve prospects of having a successful career.
Especially in the field of engineering, upgrading skills is highly valued and is seen as a requirement for many employers. Most jobs are dynamic, constantly changing, and adapting as the field grows.
Engineering is one of the most important sectors, which contributes largely for the development of the society. Engineering innovations lead a society progressive and sustainable. Interestingly, in our country, engineering is the most sought after profession. Looking at the demand, a huge expansion in the Engineering education sector took place during the last two decades. Unfortunately, the expansion needed careful consideration to maintain quality education which was probably missing. Graduates with inadequate knowledge and skill started remaining unemployed or below satisfactory level. However, many such institutes failed to sustain and closed down. Nevertheless, an ever-increasing demand kept many institutes afloat. The employability of an engineering graduate increases not only on the acquired skill but also on the reputation of the institute. It is true that only a good institute can help in acquiring necessary technical skills leading to a successful entry to a good job.
Benefitting from Skill Upgradation
Increased self-confidence: Learning new skills can empower you to take on new tasks, as well as increase your ability to articulate to employers how you can make a difference in the workforce. Employers look for candidates who are knowledge, competency, and proactiveness is what the employers look for in candidates. Someone who is confident in their skills and can display these skills actively is viewed as an asset to the company.
Improved marketability and competitiveness: Upgrading your skills helps keep you up-to-date within your field which in turn makes you a more competitive job applicant. When employers see that you have the skill set they need, you are more likely to get a call back on your application, as well as increase your chances of getting hired.
Greater resourcefulness: New skills can give you the ability to offer solutions to problems that may occur on the job. Self-direction and the ability to anticipate and resolve issues as they occur will enable the employers to give more value to you.
Better career opportunities: In the world of fast technological developments and dynamic job market, upgrading skills will keep you fit for the industry and also open the door to new career opportunities that you may not have been able to consider before.
Rapidly Changing Spectrum of Employment
In today’s world, the spectrum of employment is changing rapidly and new jobs are emerging. The skill requirement and job market is now more dynamic in nature. In future, the competition is also going to increase manifold and to match the new requirements a workforce equipped with necessary skills must be in place for the growth of the country.
Lack in good knowledge and training generally make a person vulnerable. Such educated mass is also unable to find jobs matching their qualification and expectation primarily due to the lack in technical knowledge. In addition, there is a mismatch between the skills that are currently available in educated people and the nature of skills that are actually in demand for employment.
Candidates possessing technical skills are generally more confident when applying to certain industry than those who do not. A person with good technical skill not only can deliver better output in work but can also handle problems confidently. Such candidates are also easy to train as per the need of the industry. Undoubtedly, proficiency in technical skill will make a person to stand out.
Technical skills can be of either theoretical or practical in nature. Theoretical skills provide a person the ability to judge with logic while a practical skills help in achieving the solution of a problem. Ideally, a person with both the skills is always preferred. In the end, they help the organization to make a difference with its competitors.
Judicious Selection of Discipline and Institute
For a person desirous to take engineering course, it is important to have a judicious selection of both discipline and the institute. In order to survive in the competition it is necessary to select an institute that can provide quality technical education that makes the person confident to face challenges. An engineering institute can excel if it takes care of curriculum, quality of faculty including their retention, infrastructure and placement. The curriculum must be demand based and industry responsive. The institute should remain well connected with industry. The liaison with the industry and institute should serve the mutual interest. Both the students and the faculty should be trained in the industrial condition. The training of the faculty would help in refreshing their knowledge while that for the students would give an exposure in actual working condition.
A careful survey of the engineering institutes can give an idea about the quality of skill that can be attained. Unfortunately, many of the institutes in the country lack appropriate infrastructure, qualified faculty and necessary interaction with the industry.
Therefore, before selecting an institute it is necessary to study the curriculum that it offers, the quality and number of regular faculty, laboratory infrastructure, history of innovative research carried by the institute and finally the placement scenario in the core sector. Keeping in my mind these factors, skill upgradation will automatically become a part of the process, hence making individuals a good fit for the industry.
For professionals in the IT sector, the demand for skills evolves constantly. For instance, the public cloud market is expected to become a $191 billion industry by 2020 and cloud computing certified professionals have a huge potential for career growth. With the progress of this practice, along with others such as e-commerce, m-commerce, business intelligence, Big Data and analytics, the need for qualified professionals in these areas and their related technologies will also go up. Accredited certifications in the technologies of future will enhance the horizon of one’s career in the ever-changing job market.