The Indian economy is at the 5th position amongst the world’s largest economies. Hence, its employment realm will face similar changes already predicted for the rest of the world as well. It could also be said that artificial intelligence (AI) and automation will change the face of Indian employment.
Although layoffs will be an unavoidable aspect of the job sector, diverse kinds of new jobs will evolve at the same time. For example, AI itself is expected to generate 2.3 million new global jobs, while eliminating just 1.8 million.
As per a recent study conducted on the impact of advanced technologies on 5 major sectors, including IT, ITeS, Financial Services, Retail, Automobile, and Textile/Apparels, nearly 9% of India’s total workforce of 600 million people will be doing jobs that don’t exist today with 39% being in jobs that will undergo huge changes relevant with required skillset in the upcoming 5 years.
The report also proposed that 12 key factors will decide the future of jobs in India, like the rising middle-class population, usage of exponential technologies, business innovations, creation of optimized supply chains, globalization-oriented factors like level of FDI inflows, and availability of jobs for Indians at overseas locations.
As per expert opinion, most of the future job loss warnings failed to distinguish between AI and Automation, and overlooked the multiple benefits of AI augmentation, being a blend of human cognitive capabilities and AI, both complementing each other. This pace will pick up in the next several years or decades to generate future jobs that don’t exist today but will soon do.
The continuing technological advancements will change the job scenario in India, with adoption of exponential technologies and digitization bringing about vast changes in business operations and processing, business models, with global value chains. The changes are probably going to transform the Indian employment landscape in near future, more positively than what we expect today. The result will be more productive yet safer jobs, better-suited job openings, higher-paying jobs, and enhanced access to social security within the employment sector in the next couple of years.
In another survey, it was predicted how digitization and emerging technologies can be augmented to create a bright future for professionals in India at all levels. The following write-up will tell you how technological innovations could reshape the face of Indian employment:
Generating Huge Opportunities for the Growing Indian Workforce
The automation and exponential technologies are tending to eat up most of the present jobs in the future. But, the Indian companies have a completely different outlook. It has been revealed that there are twice as many companies having hired new talents owing to technology adoption and their counterparts having curtailed their workforce in the past 5 years.
Due to ongoing automation across industries, multiple jobs will become redundant, but it might replace risky and unwanted jobs.
As new types of jobs have recently emerged with elimination of a few conventional ones, about 21% of the companies have generated new positions following digitization and automation in the last 5 years.
Improving the Quantity and Quality of Indian Jobs
One of the unique features of Indian employment market is that about 92% of employment is not up to the mark. The bulk of Indian job market comprises informal employment, including temporary jobs, contractual roles, or part-time opportunities. Although it’s unpromising at the moment, the trend is getting popular in developed economies.
A huge chunk of the Indian workforce are employed with organizations that are not legally bound to offer social security and other benefits to the employees.
There is an increasing interest in employments that are offering independent work with an increasing interest of the Indian youth in digitally-enabled independent work calls for developing revived models of social security and benefits, which are directly related to independent professionals rather than employers.
There is a growing preference for new work arrangements, with about 19% of the firms hiring freelancers in the last year. The new types of employment might force organizations to be flexible, and ensure expansion, innovation, and adoption of technological innovations. But, flexibility should not put people’s welfare and wellbeing at risk.
It has also been revealed that India’s young generation is extremely optimistic about independent work options, with almost 59% of young participants expressing interest in participating in the gig economy as their primary source of earning. This will work in favor of India in the upcoming years. Actualizing this would require Indian organizations to take the best advantage of digitization and Internet accessibility, thereby generating higher-paying and employee-friendly opportunities, with bringing professionals under the roof of paid economy.
Improved social security and bigger markets will enhance benefits for professionals, thereby offering a much-needed flexibility to companies to adopt technological innovations.
Generating Equal Opportunities for Youth, Women, and Marginalized Sectors
It was found that women contribute 17% of India’s GDP, considered around 35-40% for most developed countries. They also make for about 27% of the total Indian workforce, way less than the global mean of 50%. Compared with previous reports, it is evident that female participation in the labor force has risen. But, nearly 30% of the participating organizations don’t have any female staff on roll. The remaining 70% of the companies have 10% or fewer females in their respective workforces. Also, women constitute just 26% of overall hiring for the fastest-growing roles over the last 5 years.
Moreover, it has been revealed that gender biases exist across various sectors. About 37% of companies are unwilling to add more women to their existing labor forces for their preference of male employees. So, ensuring women’s participation in the Indian workforce possible might enhance India’s GDP by 27%.
About 64% of the Indian youth are neither into education nor employed due to difficulties in finding desirable jobs. It could be due to the absence of adequate information, dearth of guidance to find suitable openings, and lack of skill-development programs.
In India, online platforms offer access to relevant information, enhance awareness on changes in skillset required for new roles, render counseling/mentoring services, and obtain work exposure via project-based work.
Limited usage of resources impacts the economy negatively and hampers economic growth. Work is drifting from factory and offices to digital spaces, so there is ample possibility to reconsider necessities of economic participation, revival of social norms pertaining to employment, and adoption of a new framework to allow increased participation of women with marginalized sections of society in the workforce.
Developing an Ecosystem to Educate and Upgrade Workforce Skills
Using technological innovations changes can be brought about to types of jobs with alteration of job roles and skills required to take up those roles. Adjusting to the present skillsets and taking initiatives to bring about new skills for newcomers to the workforce are imperative.
About 35% of the companies surveyed comprised lack of required skillset, as a major hindrance to adopt emerging technologies. Also, 33% of companies agree that their workforce requires to learn new skills to handle their newly introduced machinery or technology.
The study also found that most companies are making efforts to fill the skill void through training sessions. Along with that, the Indian youth planning or having recently joined the labor force, are quite excited about skill upgrades. About 76% of the youth are interested in undergoing skill development training programs for embarking on better job opportunities with more salaries.
Boosting human capital using investments is necessary to ensure availability of a rightly skilled business workforce. It will help catalyze adoption of technology, while enhancing productivity. Easily accessible, befitting, and affordable training opportunities should be available to existing/future workforce to boost employability.
The private sector should, ideally, take charge of skill modification and upgrade by offering appropriate training, with proper mentoring/counseling sessions to the workforce. The usage of technologically innovative platforms for skill enhancement/training will act as the best illustration of finding a solution to the problem and can also be regarded as a better alternative to age-old educational systems.
Creating an all-inclusive policy space to generate job opportunities as per job-seekers’ interest is a must.
Most of the companies states that adoption of new technologies might bring positive outcomes in the next 5 years, around 65% of the organizations stated experiencing difficulty in adoption of such technologies, particularly due to a lack of skilled workforce and funds to invest on training them.
India should look for new ways to overcome such hindrances and take full advantage of tech-oriented job market. It will be necessary for India to develop a policy setting capable of generating productive job opportunities with focus on the interest of job seekers and the whole society.
Entitlements and social protections offered by employers should be reconsidered as per new tech-oriented workforce, with novel protections and provisions to link offerings/entitlements to employees rather than employers.
India being one of the largest globally emerging economies, has an immense potential to overcome technological disturbances. Coping with changing business environments for incorporating exponential technologies across various industries are necessary, while training the workforce accordingly.
India might then be able to generate several new job opportunities for its ever-growing labor force, augment growth and productivity, and generate an improved work environment. The public and private sectors with the society will also have to follow a collaborative approach to comprehend the possible impact of technological disturbances, to help overcome challenges posed by technological innovations.