Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription Access
Open Access Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Restricted Access Subscription Access

Change in the Demand for Employability Skills of Engineers: An Indian Study


Affiliations
1 Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology, Gujarat, India
     

   Subscribe/Renew Journal


Employability skills are the capabilities and qualities employers look for in candidates while assessing them for employment. In case of engineers, employers demand generic and technical skills from engineers ready to join industries. This paper aims to explore the perception of Indian employers on the issue of the employability skills of engineers. Specifically, it aims to determine whether the skill requirement of engineers will change or remain the same in the post-COVID 19 era. This study used the interview method of qualitative analysis in which 16 interviews of human resource managers of different multinational companies were conducted. The findings reveal a sudden and significant paradigm shift in the required set of employability skills for engineering professionals. Digital skills have dominated over other technical and generic skills in the list of employability skills that recruiters demand. The findings can be used to spread awareness among engineering graduates about the changing demands of the workplace. Secondly, higher education institutions can rethink and revise their curriculum to develop digital skills. Lastly, the use of in-depth interview method can help future researchers to develop questionnaires from the extensive data and replicate the research questions to understand the change in demand of employers.

Keywords

Digital skills; Employer’s demand; Engineers, Employability skills; Post-COVID-19
Subscription Login to verify subscription
User
Notifications
Font Size


  • Abdullah, A. Z., Muhammad, M. Z., & Nasir, N. a. M. (2019). The Role of Soft Skills within Business Students towards Graduate Employability. Journal of Entrepreneurship and B u s i n e s s , 7 ( 2 ) . https://doi.org/10.17687/jeb.0702.07.
  • Agrawal S., De Smet A., Lacroix S., and Reich A. (2020, May 7), To emerge stronger from the COVID 19 crisis, companies should start r e s k i l l i n g t h e i r w o r k f o r c e . h t t ps:// www. mckinsey. com/ business- functions/ people- and- organizational- performance/our insights/to-emerge-stronger- from-the-COVID-19-crisis-companies-should- start-reskilling-their workforces-now.
  • Ajit, V., & Deshmukh, P. B. (2013). Factors Impacting Employability Skills of Engineers. International Journal of Science and Research, 2(4), 30–32.
  • Blom, A., & Saeki, H. (2011). Employability and Skill Set of Newly Graduated Engineers in India: Policy Research Working Paper No. 5 6 4 0 . A v a i l a b l e a t : http://elibrary.worldbank.org/doi/abs/10.1596/ 1813-9450-5640.
  • Carretero, S., Vuorikari, R., & Punie, Y. (2017). The Digital Competence Framework for Citizens with Eight proficiency levels and examples of use. Publication Office of the E u r o p e a n U n i o n . https://doi.org/10.2760/38842.
  • Cassidy, S. (2006). Developing employability skills: Peer assessment in higher education. Education and Training,48 (7), 508–517. https://doi.org/10.1108/00400910610705890.
  • Cepeda, G., & Martin, D. (2005). A review of case studies publishing in Management Decision 2003- 2004: Guides and criteria for achieving quality in qualitative research. Management Decision, 43(6), 851–876. https://doi.org/10.1108/00251740510603600.
  • Chaita M. V. (2016). Developing Graduate Employability Skills Your Pathway to Employment. Universal Publisher.
  • Chan, C. K. Y., Fong, E. T. Y., Chan, C. K. Y., & Fong, E. T. Y. (2018). Disciplinary differences and implications for the development of generic skills: A study of engineering and business students’ perceptions of generic skills. European Journal of Engineering Education, 43(6). https://doi.org/10.1080/03043797.2018.14627 66.
  • Chandra Mouli, K. V. (2020, January 1). Why aren’t engineers employable? Deccan Herald. R e t r i e v e d f r o m https://www.deccanherald.com/opinion/panora ma/ why- aren- t - engineers- employable- 790612.html.
  • Chattopadhyay, S. (2020). “National Education Policy”, 2020, pp. 23–27. Retrieved from https://www.epw.in/journal/2020/46/commenta ry/national-education-policy-2020.html.
  • Crowne, K. A. (2019). Investigating antecedents of transformational leadership in students. Journal of International Education in Business, 12(1), 80–94. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIEB-07- 2018-0029.
  • Digital skills critical for jobs and social i n c l u s i o n . ( 2 0 1 8 ) . R e t r i e v e d f r o m https://en.unesco.org/news/digital-skills- critical-jobs-and-social-inclusion
  • Dowling, D. (1999). Problem solving and decision making. Fire Engineers Journal, 5 9 ( 1 9 9 ) , 1 1 – 1 7 . https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315669502-9.
  • Duarte, R. E., & Rodríguez, L. (2021). Self- Perceived digital competencies in educational o n l i n e m i g r a t i o n d u e t o C O V I D - 1 9 confinement. Higher Learning Research Communications, 11 (1).
  • DOI:10.18870/hlrc. v11i1.1191
  • Du-Babcock, B. (2006). Teaching business communication: Past, present, and future. Journal of Business Communication, 43(3) No.3, 253–264. https://doi.org/10.1177/ 0021943606288775.
  • Employability Survey 2019: Jobs slip away from the ill-equipped Indian engineer” (2019). The Economic Times, E- Paper. Retrieved from https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/jobs/em ployability-survey-2019- jobs-slip-away-from- t h e - i l l - e q u i p p e d - i n d i a n - engineer/articleshow/68559686.
  • Feld, A., Reich, A., Störk, K., & Durth, S.(2020), Thriving after COVID-19: What skills do e m p l o y e e s n e e d ? . A v a i l a b l e a t : h t t ps:// www. mckinsey. com/ business- f u n c t i o n s / m c k i n s e y - a c c e l e r a t e / o u r - insights/accelerate-blog/thriving-after-covid- 19-what-skills-do-employees-need
  • Ferrari, A. (2013). Digital Competence in Practice: An Analysis of Frameworks, Joint Research Centre of the European Commission., 91. https://doi.org/10.2791/82116.
  • Finch, D. J., Hamilton, L., Baldwin, R., & Zehner, M. (2013). An exploratory study of factors affecting undergraduate employability. Journal of Education and Training, 55(7), 681–704. https://doi.org/10.1108/et-07-2012- 0077.
  • Future of Jobs in India - 2. 0. (2017). Retrieved from http://ficci.in/spdocument/23031/Future- of-Jobs in-India-2.0.pdf.
  • Gazier, B. (1998). Concepts and Policies, 37–71. Berlin: European Employment Observatory
  • Hillage, J., & Pollard, E. (1998). Employability: Developing a framework for policy analysis, Labor Market Trends, 107 ( 85 ) , 1 – 4 . https://www.education.gov.uk/publications/eO rderingDownload/RB85.pdf
  • Hinchliffe, G., & Jolly, A. (2011b). Graduate identity and employability. British Educational R e s e a r c h J o u r n a l , 3 7 ( 4 ) , 5 6 3 – 5 8 4 . https://doi.org/10.1080/01411926.2010.48220 0.
  • Huitt, W. (1992). Problem solving and decision making: Consideration of individual differences using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Journal o f P s y c h o l o g i c a l Ty p e , 2 4 , 3 3 - 4 4 . http://www.edpsycinteractive.org/papers/1992- huitt-mbti-problem-solving.pdf
  • Keller, S., Parker, C. T., & Chan, C. (2011). Employability Skills: Student Perceptions of an IS Final Year Capstone Subject. Innovation in Teaching and Learning in Information and C o m p u t e r S c i e n c e s , 1 0 ( 2 ) , 4 – 1 5 . https://doi.org/10.11120/ital.2011.10020004.
  • K n i g h t , P. T. , & Yo r k e , M . ( 2 0 0 3 ) . Employability and Good Learning in Higher Education. Teaching in Higher Education, 8(1), 3 – 1 6 . h t t p s : / / d o i . o r g / 1 0 . 1 0 8 0 / 1356251032000052294.
  • Kolmos, A., & Holgaard, J. E. (2018). Employability in engineering education: Are engineering students ready for work? The Engineering-Business Nexus: Symbiosis, Tension and Co- Evolution. 499 – 520 . https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-99636- 3_22.
  • Lincoln, Y.S. & Guba, E.G. (1985). Naturalistic Inquiry. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.
  • Markes, I. (2006). A review of literature on employability skill needs in engineering. European Journal of Engineering Education. 3 1 ( 6 ) , 6 3 7 – 6 5 0 . https://doi.org/10.1080/03043790600911704.
  • McQuaid, R. W., & Lindsay, C. (2005). The concept of employability. Urban Studies, 42(2), 1 9 7 – 2 1 9 . https://doi.org/10.1080/004209804200031610 0.
  • Nachmias, S., & Hubschmid-Vierheilig, E. (2021). We need to learn how to love digital learning ‘again’: European SMEs response to COVID-19 digital learning needs. Human Resource Development International, 24(2), 1 2 3 – 1 3 2 . https://doi.org/10.1080/13678868.2021.18935 03.
  • Nair, C. S., Patil, A., & Mertova, P. (2009). Re- engineering graduate skills - A case study. European Journal of Engineering Education, 3 4 ( 2 ) , 1 3 1 – 1 3 9 . https://doi.org/10.1080/03043790902829281.
  • Nilsson, S. (2010). Enhancing individual employability: The perspective of engineering graduates. Education + Training, 52(67), 540- 551.
  • Only 1.7% of engineers in India fit into new-age jobs. (2019). The Hindu. Retrieved from https://www.thehindu.com/education/careers.
  • Overtoom, C., (2000), “Employability Skills: An Update”, Center on Education and Training for Employment. ERIC Digest no. 220
  • Pink, D.H. (2006) A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future, Riverhead Books.
  • Pitan, O. S., & Muller, C. (2020). Student perspectives on employability development in higher education in South Africa. Journal of Education and Training, 63(3), 453–471. https://doi.org/10.1108/et-02-2018-0039
  • Pool, D. L. & Sewell, P. (2007). The key to employability: Developing a practical model of graduate employability. Education + Training, 4 9 ( 4 ) , 2 7 7 - 2 8 9 . http://doi.org/10.1108/00400910710754435.
  • Rajala, S. A. (2012). Beyond 2020: Preparing engineers for the future. Proceedings of the IEEE, 100(SPL CONTENT), 1376–1383. https://doi.org/10.1109/JPROC.2012.2190169.
  • Ramadi, E., Ramadi, S., & Nasr, K. (2016). Engineering graduates’ skill sets in the MENA region: A gap analysis of industry expectations and satisfaction. European Journal of Engineering Education, 41 ( 1 ) , 34 – 52 . https://doi.org/10.1080/03043797.2015.10127 07.
  • Report. (2019). India Today Web Desk. R e t r i e v e d f r o m h t t p s : / / w w w. i n d i a t o d a y. i n / e d u c a t i o n today/news/story/over-80-indian-engineers- are-unemployable-lack-new-age-technology- skills-report 1483222-2019-03-21.
  • Rowe, A. D., & Zegwaard, K. E. (2017). Developing graduate employability skills and attributes: Curriculum enhancement through work-integrated learning. Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education,18(2), 87–99.
  • Scarnati, J. T. (2001). On becoming a team player. Team Performance Management: An International Journal, 7 ( 1 – 2 ) , 5 – 10 . https://doi.org/10.1108/1352759011038950.
  • Singh, J. S. (2012). Developing Soft Skills for Enhancing Employability of Engineering Graduates. International Journal of Engineering and Management Research, 2(5), 54–56. http://www.ijemr.net/DOC/DevelopingSoftSki llsForEnhancingEmployabilityOfEngineringG raduatees Dr7840e69f-c7d8-495b-b5b2- c5f202e79b0a.pdf.
  • Sinha, S., Jawahar, I. M., Ghosh, P., & Mishra, A. (2020). Assessing employers’ satisfaction with Indian engineering graduates using e x p e c t a n c y - d i s c o n f i r m a t i o n t h e o r y. International Journal of Manpower, 41(4), 473–489. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJM-04- 2019-0185.
  • Smith, C. D., Ferns, S., & Russell, L. (2014). Assessing the impact of work-integrated learning (WIL) on student work readiness. In Project information (website (April).
  • https://doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.1.3027.0320.
  • Suarta, I. M. (2012). Employability skills needed by higher vocational education graduates to be successful in the workplace. Chinese Business Review, 11(7), 639–648.
  • h t t p s : / / d o i . o r g / 1 0 . 1 7 2 6 5 / 1 5 3 7 - 1506/2012.07.004.
  • Top 10 Employability Skills. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.exeter.ac.uk/ambassadors/ HESTEM/resources/General/STEMNET Employability skills guide.pdf.
  • Yilmaz, K. (2013). Comparison of quantitative a n d q u a l i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h t r a d i t i o n s : E p i s t e m o l o g i c a l , T h e o r e t i c a l , a n d Methodological Differences. European Journal of Education, 48(2), 311-325.
  • Yorke, M. (2005). Employability in higher education: what it is – what it is not, Learning & Employability: Series One, pp. 1 - 24 . http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/ir.162.
  • 80% of Indian engineers not fit for jobs, says survey. (2019, March 25). Business Today. R e t r i e v e d f r o m https://www.businesstoday.in/current/corporate /indian-engineers-tech-jobs-survey-80-per- centof-indian-engineers-not-fit-for-jobs-says- survey/story/330869.html.

Abstract Views: 61

PDF Views: 1




  • Change in the Demand for Employability Skills of Engineers: An Indian Study

Abstract Views: 61  |  PDF Views: 1

Authors

Urvashi Kaushal
Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology, Gujarat, India
Kiran Vaghela
Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology, Gujarat, India

Abstract


Employability skills are the capabilities and qualities employers look for in candidates while assessing them for employment. In case of engineers, employers demand generic and technical skills from engineers ready to join industries. This paper aims to explore the perception of Indian employers on the issue of the employability skills of engineers. Specifically, it aims to determine whether the skill requirement of engineers will change or remain the same in the post-COVID 19 era. This study used the interview method of qualitative analysis in which 16 interviews of human resource managers of different multinational companies were conducted. The findings reveal a sudden and significant paradigm shift in the required set of employability skills for engineering professionals. Digital skills have dominated over other technical and generic skills in the list of employability skills that recruiters demand. The findings can be used to spread awareness among engineering graduates about the changing demands of the workplace. Secondly, higher education institutions can rethink and revise their curriculum to develop digital skills. Lastly, the use of in-depth interview method can help future researchers to develop questionnaires from the extensive data and replicate the research questions to understand the change in demand of employers.

Keywords


Digital skills; Employer’s demand; Engineers, Employability skills; Post-COVID-19

References