We all observe rising unemployment and downsizing in different industries. It is happening due to multiple factors such as a lack of career counseling, HR planning within an organizational setup, technical education for the newly recruited and knowledge of contemporary needs of the industry. All these factors contribute to developing an increasing skills gap between academia and industry.
Resultantly, the institutes remain unaware of industrial requirements and skills. On the other side, the organizations lack collaboration with the academic sector to share the skill level and requisite expertise needed to fill within different departments.
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How to Bridge the Skills Gap between Academia and Industry?
In this article, we are going to bring to the forefront some steps to bridge the gap between academia and the industry for uprooting the skills gap once and for all.
Our pertinent focus would be to highlight the significance of this linkage, the purpose behind bridging the gap, and how this resultant connection can be practically established by academia and industries.
MoUs Between Technical Institutes, Universities, and Industries
The endeavor ought to begin from faculty members paying visits to pertinent industries. These visits will help the institute’s administration to have a survey of the facility. This would give a chance to understand the job description, roles, and needs of the industry. It would inform the university about the kind of employees the industry requires.
Consequently, faculty would return mentally prepared to design a curriculum that would develop the essential skills among their pupils. Resultantly, institutes would align their degree programs and diplomas keeping in view the needs and expectations of the marketplace.
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Holding Employers’ Visits in Academic Sector
Next, the employers ought to hold visits in different institutes for evaluating the curriculum, labs, and equipment to highlight anything missing. This will check the essential requirements for the effective training and development of the young talent so that these individuals can take on the responsibilities after their degree completion. This can also be done in the form of job fairs held in different institutes on an annual basis.
As a result, various aspirants would get a chance to interact with their prospective employers, bridge the skills gap and realize the potential that these individuals are seeking within their workforce.
Integration of Industrial Visits Within Curriculum to Bridge the Skills Gap
One smart strategy is to give your young learners a chance to observe the industrial environment. Institutes can incorporate visits to different organizations and include their schedule within their curriculum. The allocation of credit hours to such visits would not only help students to maintain high standards within their grading but would also pave the way for getting the right exposure from the prospective workplace. The learners would attain the appropriate mentoring from the individuals already a part of an organization. The suggestions and recommendations given by the employees would be based on their practical experience in the field.
Thus, these visits would act as a source of motivation for young learners to determine their own future based on what they have learned from several industrial visits.
Building the Right Workforce Competencies
The recent surveys have revealed some major leadership competencies anticipated by contemporary organizations within their employees.
- The first one of these is an employee’s self-awareness. Any individual who has been recruited must be able to understand and overcome weaknesses. The person should not possess even the slightest of doubts with respect to his/her career choice.
- Next, the employee should not only be able to speak for oneself but also get vocal for the betterment of the organization. Strong interpersonal and communication skills are enough to influence the perspectives of the target audience. Resultantly, the individual is able to present a positive image of employers.
- Moving onwards, a competent employee has the art of self-motivation. The plans do not reveal the results as anticipated which may cause disappointment. This is the point where an employee has to keep one’s spirit alive as the organization and colleagues are relying on this encouragement to continue making the effort. Thus, every individual contributes to keeping the spirits alive of the whole organizational setup consequently developing a motivational company culture.
- In addition, all employees should possess learning agility. As the company has to bring about pertinent changes in its working under varying circumstances; for example, working remotely during the lockdown, the workforce with particular training is able to adapt to the changes brought by their organization. These qualities ought to be taught right from the outset of a child’s education and this training can be initiated by incorporating several strategic games within the curriculum.
The outcome of such a program would be a combination of action as well as passive learning of the aforementioned competencies targeted by the employers.
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A Shift From Experience Towards Skill
One of the major reasons behind the rising unemployment is the rigorous criteria maintained by most of the organizations which prefer an experienced individual over the other competitors. Companies have to realize and understand the changing dynamics of working under the booming digital marketing and remote work routines. Individuals tend to develop multiple skills by learning from their experiences while serving several organizations. This would of course make their total number of years quite less compared to an applicant who has continuously served a single organization at a particular position.
The employers have to reconsider their perspectives and give that person, who has acquired multiple skills, a chance to join their organization. This individual would help establish a culture where an individual with skills is encouraged and welcomed to join the group instead of a person habitual of performing monotonous jobs and duties.
Pertinent Training and Mentoring Sessions to Fill the Skills Gap
Lastly, if you want to bridge the gap between academia and the industry, you need to organize multiple training sessions for your workforce just to make them realize what is expected from them being part of your group. They ought to learn the organizational culture, values, beliefs, and perspectives established and maintained by an organization. The relevant mentoring would give you results beyond your expectations.