Academic journal article IUP Journal of Soft Skills

Employability Skills Required for Functional Areas of Management

Academic journal article IUP Journal of Soft Skills

Employability Skills Required for Functional Areas of Management

Article excerpt

Introduction

Employment is based on the competitiveness in the labor market that either demands individuals to decrease the possibility of losing their jobs or to increase the possibility of getting ones, and to constantly acquire competitive competencies and skills and update previous ones (Dordevic and Milanovic, 2015). Today, 90 million youth across the world are unemployed, forming 47% of the total number of unemployed, and an additional 300 million belong to the "working poor" category-they are in unskilled, insecure jobs and live in poor conditions (Oyebanji Oyelaran-Oyeyinka, 2012).

According to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund projections, India is the world's fastest growing economy. Employability has become a big hurdle for a developing country like India. India in order to become a superpower need its demographic dividend to be highly skilled and equipped. But various governmental and non-governmental agencies and organizations (Aspiring Minds, 2012; MeritTrac, 2012; and ASSOCHAM, 2016) have studied employability of professional courses and found low employability of students.

Only 7% of the MBA graduates are employable. Most of 5,500 B-schools in the country are producing sub-par graduates who are unemployable, and if at all they find placement, then they earn less than flO.OOO a month (ASSOCHAM, 2016).

The National Employability Report (2012) published by Aspiring Minds reveals that employability of management students is below 10% for any functional role in HR, Marketing or Finance. When non-employability is considered because of lack of skills, then 32% management graduates lose out because of lack of English language proficiency and cognitive skills, at least 50% students are not employable in functional domains for lack of knowledge and conceptual understanding of the domain. For students in tier II and tier III cities, a large gap is observed in English language skills and finance (Aspiring Minds, 2012).

Dacko (2006) suggested that there is a need to identify current and future employers' full set of relative priorities for key business skill among students of MBA program. It is also needed to identify the extent to which firms want MBA program graduates to acquire skills. By conducting surveys among employers and managements, educators can prepare educational experiences that are highly relevant, tailored and competitive in meeting the market needs worldwide.

Background of the Study

Colleges and universities have many stakeholders, including students, parents, employers, public officials and community leaders, as well as the general public that has come to see higher education as both a commodity and a public good. What these stakeholders have in common is a need to know if the faculty teaching at colleges is preparing today's students for tomorrow's jobs (Gumport, 2002). Each stakeholder has their own views on management education, its implication towards employability and other offerings of it.

The causes behind non-employability should be identified by including employers' dimension into the analysis of importance of employability skills (Chung-Khain Wye, 2009). So to tackle the problem of employability of management students, forward integration should be done by the institutes with the industry to understand what industry needs and what skills should be on the priority list. For employers, some skills and traits will be more important than the others. Accordingly, it is very much needed to find employers' expectations from the candidates in terms of skills and personal qualities for entry level employment in different functional areas of management.

The perceptions of students and the faculty about employability skills also should be determined. With this, the alignment between the perceptions of the faculty and employers towards employability can be judged. If there is no alignment, then the faculty have to update themselves with the new corporate world needs, so that they can dispense these required skills among the students on a priority basis. …

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