In Udemy's “2019/2020 Global Skills Gap Report”, the majority (92 percent) of employees in India agree that there is a skills gap in the country and two-thirds (76 percent) of them feel personally affected by it.
Irwin Anand, MD, Udemy India said, “There is an underlying current of anxiety, with as many as three-quarters of workers in India responding that they feel personally affected by the skills gap. As the COVID pandemic further exacerbates employee anxiety, business models, and jobs, we have seen many turn to skills training platforms like Udemy to help them become more competitive."
He added, "The Udemy Skills Gap Report not only shows that Indian employees understand the importance of professional development, but they also feel responsible for it and expect their employers to support them on their upskilling journey. In a post-pandemic world, we expect to see this trend accelerate even further — success in today’s rapidly changing world requires new skills and a focus on continuous learning.”
The four key skills
Two-thirds also responded that all four skill types are equally valued by their employers: Technical and Digital skills (68 percent), Leadership and Management skills (66 percent), Productivity skills (66 percent), Soft skills (63 percent).
How are they learning?
Indian employees learn mostly through online courses (44 percent) and corporate professional development (34 percent). The majority of Indian employees (97 percent) are excited about learning new skills and transitioning to a new job one day.
As majorityof them (82 percent) agree that college education has not equipped them with the skills they need to succeed in today’s job market and 84 percent say that skills are changing so rapidly that their current knowledge is becoming obsolete, the need to invest in one's own learning becomes obvious. The good news is that today many resources are available online. However, employees do need some help in identifying relevant courses for them.
Competition vs Automation: Why continuous learning is critical?
The majority (92 percent) also say that there is so much competition in the job market that they need to be constantly upskilling. In fact, majority fears that automation may replace their jobs.
82 percent agree that automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are taking away job roles and they need to reskill to stay relevant. 76 percent think that AI/automation will be able to do their work within the next five years. 91 percent have had to learn new skills to do their job effectively.
The report reitetrates the need to invest in continuous learning. The overwhelming majority (94 percent) also say it is important for their employer to encourage and support a “constant learning/training culture” in the organization. Whether it is to retain the employees, or to make them more capable to drive business outcomes effectively, investing in L&D is key.