Sector Skill Councils: The way forward for Skill Development in India

In the Indian context of sustained economic growth, need for competent SSCs is immense which may aid in setting up national training centers of excellence and develop national occupational standard, training curricula & promote research. Efforts should also be channelized to upgrade labor force skills, especially for underprivileged sections of society and in backward regions of the country.

Srategic investment in human capital and advancement in quality can be regarded as key to building a knowledge economy. Skill development in India, beside other important issues, faces the challenge of a pronounced skill gap in economy’s high growth sectors.
Further probing may help put things in perspective. The Government aims to create 70 million new jobs by 2012, and has constituted the National Skill Development Mission to guide the Skill Development Policy in the economy. High growth industries such as automobiles, auto components, transportation, logistics, warehousing, packaging, travel & tourism, media & entertainment and healthcare services are expected to create these new jobs. 75% of these jobs would require sector and skill specific trained workforce. It has been envisaged that by 2015, approximately 2.25 million skilled workers will be required in the Auto Sector, about 4.5-5 million in the Banking and Finance Services Sector, about 4-5 million in Retail and about 13-15 million in the Construction Sector. Further, 90% of the jobs in India are ‘skill-based’; while only 6% of the Indian workforce receives any form of vocational training. These facts and figures are clearly indicative of the fact that India needs to revamp its skill development strategies with a focus on industry needs and attempt to balance labour demand and supply.

With similar objectives in mind, The National Skill Development Policy 2009 aiming to train 500 million people by 2022 was formulated. The policy mandates that National Skill Development Council would constitute Sector Skill Councils (SSCs) for all the important sectors of the economy and the process is still underway.

SSCs are national partnership organizations that bring together Industry, Labour, Academia and Government together with an objective of bridging the identified skill gaps in different sectors of a nation’s economy. SSC identifies the macro & micro skill requirements. It extends its support to develop standards in curricula, occupation, undertake research & training set up Sector specific academies of excellence for conducting research and prepare plan of action for the sector. It usually functions by involving the industry under a PPP framework. The idea is to effectively boost the skills of specific sector workforces. Global experiences also confirm the momentous role that SSCs play in skill development of a nation. UK for instance has a strong tradition of periodic labour studies which support strong SSCs’ presence in the country. Australia and Canada also have had some positive experiences with SSCs.

In the Indian context of sustained economic growth, need for competent SSCs is immense which may aid in setting up national training centers of excellence and develop national occupational standard, training curricula & promote research. Efforts should also be channelized to upgrade labor force skills, especially for underprivileged sections of society and in backward regions of the country.

 

Source: http://youthpolicy.in/index.php/initiatives/skills-development/news/96-sector-skill-councils-the-way-forward-for-skill-development-in-india