Only 4% of India’s workforce is skilled as compared to 96% in South Korea, 80% in Japan, 74% in Germany, 68% in the UK and 45% in China. Experts say that developers, construction firms and architects, are now incentivising their employees to take up courses to develop, update and modernise their skill sets. There is no quick solution to the skill deficit problem as it requires a long-term focused resolution and consistent effort. The Indian real estate industry recognises that this problem could get out of hand, if proper steps are not taken immediately.
Industry initiatives to promote the skill development
Keeping in mind the need of the real estate industry for skilled labour, CREDAI has launched a multi-pronged programme to develop skilled manpower in the industry.
Jitendra Thakkar, chairman, CREDAI Skilling Initiative, explained the initiatives saying, “More than five years back, CREDAI launched the Kushal programme in partnership with the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) to conduct skill upgradation programmes for construction workers on site, in Pune. Till date, it has trained more than 25,000 workers who are highly sought-after due to their experience.
“Similar programmes are now being launched by CREDAI all over India. These are executed in partnership with the NSDC, under the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), the Directorate General of Employment and Training (DGET) and the state governments. In all such programmes, CREDAI proposes to follow the National Open School (NOS) finalised by the Construction Sector Skill Council of India (CSDCI), in association with the industry, keeping in view its specific requirements and impart training to construction workers through professional training agencies in the construction sector.”
Employment opportunities require highly specialised skills. Additionally, the technical progress witnessed this last decade due to continued growth in various sectors, has made the arena more challenging. “A student aspiring to join a particular segment should be well-versed with the nuances of the profession or should have the subject knowledge and relevant skill set,” points out Anil Sawhney, associate dean & director, School of Construction, RICS School of Built Environment, Amity University. “A limited number of institutions have started offering courses on these streams. Some schools have also been set up to fulfil the industry need for skilled professionals.” While the requirement for skilled professionals increases, there are a limited number of programs that address the skill gap and train people with global practices. India’s growth target can only be accomplished once the crucial issue of skilled manpower shortages is addressed.
Rohan Bulchandani, co-founder and president, of The Real Estate Management Institute (REMI) informs, “REMI has been created to increase the supply of professionals and address the existing skill gap. The Indian real estate industry is underserved, fragmented and lacking in fundamental best practices. REMI looks to facilitate individual careers in real estate, as well as enhance leadership for existing real estate professionals and serve as a cornerstone for building a better future.”
Experts firmly believe that India is slowly stepping ahead while realising the importance of skilled development. Hence, given the shortage of skilled manpower in the industry on the one hand and high levels of unemployment in the country on the other, the need for focusing on skill development programs becomes extremely important now and requires greater initiatives in the future.