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Why Students Are Not Industry-Ready? Is Everything OK with Industry?

You would sound very familiar with the observations made by industry with regard to the preparedness of modern students for jobs in the industry. It's been quite a fashion for industry-representatives to echo negative sentiments similar to this, more often than not stating that today's students are not 'industry-ready'. But do you know what happens when we confront INDUSTRY PEOPLE with a direct question of – What parameters they have employed to reach this universal judgement?

It's phenomenal to know that during most interactions their answers are not specific and are in fact very rudimentary, vague and highly contradictory. A grave problem lies there, not in their answers, but in their approach to this serious issue. It is easier for industry representatives to blame the academia, for student's short-comings or their lack of preparedness for jobs, etc. But no one seems to take a pause and ask some retrospective questions from the industry also.

No doubt, the academia is left with a lot to desire. But the industry is left with more to desire in comparison.

How comes that industry-representatives who are frequently sent for placement events, have no idea of what is it that they are looking among students, or expecting in the students?

A viciousness & frightening loop

During many events highlighting the 'Industry-Academia' interactions, we have consistently observed that even industry-representatives at times don't know the exact 'skill-set' required for them to make appropriate hiring during the events. We have been witness to regular occasions when corporate representatives start avoiding direct questions. It is not strange any more. And this is exactly the first reason that makes it a very frightening loop. Yet still, it does not tell you of the complete of vicious loop.

You also need to take into account that there always has been a wrong side of Industry's understanding of – What do they want from their employees? For, it does not then make a difference whether it a fresh candidate or an older experienced professional. Scenarios like this compel you to believe that industry-guys do not know where they themselves are heading; that industry-guys do not know that what skills they themselves would require to stay afloat, except finding them just too boastful of themselves during most interactions.

If you intend to genuinely feel the pinch of the problem and gauze - How rotten & deep the phenomenon is, read the following:

Before your start wondering about the above statement and call it a bomb, please make a note that this is the statement mentioned by Jack Welch, legendary CEO of GE. And this was factually, actually told to him by a middle-aged worker from the appliance business of General Electric. You should not need much to penetrate and observe the underlying problem. Yes, you may wonder about - why does it still continue to happen in the industry itself?

A mindless race

Most organizations world over are attempting to awaken to the understanding that it is the 'Who' factor (people factor) which is the most important. But in India the industry is still sleeping over this great understanding. Most of them still don't get worried about it and endorse fully –People are everything. You know – Why?

They have got their own classical orthodox ways and a master-slave mindset. They seem to believe as if they are sprinters and are found running a mindless race. A majority of industry stalwarts are obsessed with short-term business volumes, winning marketing strategies, creative marketing/sales tactics and so on. You can see everywhere that it is 'What' -element that is supreme in their thought-processes. That's why 'People' element does not find correct place in their considerations. Result is:

We don't have jobs, careers and growth actually, we just have openings or vacancies. Once filled, soon would be rendered vacancies again.

They are yet to master -- how to handle the most essential & fruitful paradox of today's businesses, i.e., how to achieve the short-term business gains AND how to ensure long-term victories and sustenance at the same time.

For long-term victories and sustenance they will have to be well-versed with the fact that --it is PEOPLE who are the core competence, not factory, not plant, not portfolio, not businesses, not any magical idea. Only they (people) can deliver the edge over competition consistently. But most of the business & companies are still embarking on the short-term focus only–that in fact is not the FOCUS actually. Because they believe that short-term is about thinking for 2-3 months to 1-2 years; and probably 5-10 years would be Long-term.

In fact, planning & preparing for 3-5-10 years should be short-term, and planning for 10-15-25 years should be long-term. They need to learn to build their organizations for longer-run. This is correct perspective and correct orientation for the companies. Until & unless they learn to balance this, they cannot define exactly –

What type of people with what type of skills and what type of abilities will be required?

At the moment, they are just not equipped. Irony is that they have made themselves paralyzed.

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Dr. Ashok Kumar Goel
+3 # Director at M. M. Engineering College, AmbalaDr. Ashok Kumar Goel 2014-02-14 11:43
The education system has been transformed into a money making industry. There is no effort or stress on developing curriculum that supports the needs of the industry. It is only the convenience of the institute/ university and the students that matters.
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Prof. Harihar Singh
+1 # Professor - Mech. at Lingya's University, FaridabadProf. Harihar Singh 2014-02-15 13:17
Well in my openion the reasons are many. First one is the course structure that should be updated, keeping the general need of the industries. Second the aptitude of the students should be up to mark to conceive the technical knowledge imparted to them etc...Thanks. Harihar Singh
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Dr. U.N. Shukla
+1 # Associate Professor, ITHM at Dr. B.R. Ambedkar University, AgraDr. U.N. Shukla 2014-02-18 16:26
In my opinion, there are many causes but the most significant is that our trainees as well as trainers are not adding innovative thoughts, ideas, actions etc; and even our education policy-makers are not welcoming such new concept which is away from our traditional way of learning and teaching. They move on the fixed path for the completion of syllabii/ subject curriculum, whether that syllabii is up to the mark or not.

In fact there must be some courses, which should have no syllabii but only WORK ORIENTED PROGRRAMING WITH INNOVATIVE SCHEMES.
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Dr. B.D. Kaushik
+2 # Dean (R&D) at Sharda Group of InstitutionsDr. B.D. Kaushik 2014-03-04 10:36
Apart from several reasons, the important are:

1. Courses are not designed... (to be) industry based
2. Faculty is also not fully aware about industry needs.
3. Indecisive nature of students
4. Lack of practical training.
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Vijay Kumar Sharma
0 # Asst. Professor - Mech. at JPIET, MeerutVijay Kumar Sharma 2014-03-04 13:52
In my opinion, the main cause of this problem is great lacking in Practical exposure, our education policy-makers are worried about theory not for practical.

Vijay Kumar Sharma
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Dr. Narendra Kohli
+1 # Associate Professor - CSE at HARCOURT BUTLER TECHNOLOGICAL INSTITUTE - HBTI, KanpurDr. Narendra Kohli 2014-03-04 20:11
Why Students Are Not Industry-Ready?

Firstly, syllabus should be revised time to time as per the requirement of Industry.

Secondly, after 2nd or 3rd year, industrial training should be in the curriculum.

Thirdly, some Industrial projects should be taken by the students & their mentor should one from industry & one from the Institute.

Fourth, at time to time the faculty should visit to the industry for discussion & for new projects for students.
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Prof. A. K. Jairath
+2 # Dy. Director at Amity School of Engineering & Technology, NoidaProf. A. K. Jairath 2014-11-12 15:50
Yes, it is true that our curriculum does not capture skill sets of the Industry requirement. Skill sets are based on the type of Job one has to perform in the industry.

My only complaint with the industry is they have no time to associate with the University. They cannot spare time to look at our curriculum and give advise. I request every industry to display on their website skill sets for every job they offer so that Universities do not have to run after the Industry to get the same.

Moreover, when our students visit Industry for Intern-ship, most of the students give feedback that their guides in the Industry have no time to spare for them. I hope the Top management is listening.
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Ms. Anuradha Konidena
0 # Asst. Professor - CSE/MCA at IILM ACADEMY OF HIGHER LEARNING, Greater NoidaMs. Anuradha Konidena 2014-11-13 12:31
1.There is lot of gap between industry requirements and academia.
2.Simultaneously most of the industries should come forward in terms of providing intern-ships to various colleges
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Vivek Tripathi
+3 # Asst. Professor - MGT at HINDUSTAN COLLEGE OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY, MathuraVivek Tripathi 2014-11-13 12:38
The reason is non alignment. These two worlds viz. industry and academia are seen differently, but actually industry should be a natural progression.

Technical and professional courses should be designed in consultation with industry only and that pedagogy too should be based on developing necessary skills, rather then acquiring marks.

There are certain issues with industry also. It's been rightly captured in this article that in most cases, either the industry people are also not aware of skill-set requirement during selection processes, or their approach is not correct . Many a times, I see job-description s for a fresher which seems as if it's a JD for a CEO. Is this expectation appropriate?

I do admit that industry is changing very fast and full of challenges, but unless both the worlds work in 'Concorde', the overall objective is hard to achieve alone for any.
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I.D. Jaiman
+1 # Consultant (Registrar at Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute of Management & Development Studies), LucknowI.D. Jaiman 2014-11-14 17:00
....Before your start wondering about the above statement and call it a bomb, please make a note that this is the statement mentioned by Jack Welch, legendary CEO of GE. And this was factually, actually told to him by a middle-aged worker from the appliance business of General Electric. You should not need much to penetrate and observe the underlying problem.

Yes, the above comment is very old. We in India had long back introduced "Workers participation in Industry" and all those who seriously followed it and practised 'Quality Circles' and 'Suggestion Schemes' will never agree with this comment of ""USING HANDS only and not brains.""

All teaching institutions have only time to teach basics only. It's only in medical and CA, the concept of Intern-ship or Article-ship is there. Others can only provide academic content.

To enable a person to be ready for industry, good institutions prepare them in ""Good Communication skills"", ""Leadership skills"" and develop " Learning skills/habits"" . And they also organise at least 2-3 industry-visits after which the student gives a report on the strengths & weaknesses of that Industry, besides giving suggestions as to what can/ should be done.

I am sure such practices , which are already in practice in Institutes, will make any student ""Ready for Industry"" and industry will not make such comment.
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Prof. Paramjit Kaur Tulsi
+1 # Professor & Head, Education & Educational Management Deptt. at NITTR, ChandigarhProf. Paramjit Kaur Tulsi 2014-11-26 13:37
There are multiplicity of reasons for which the acceptability of our students is low. But the most important aspect, the people working in the system at various levels need to introspect, is--

"How committed, competent and resourceful they are to bring about an element of change in the system?"
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Air Cdr  Prof  L.K. Verma
0 # Assistant Professor - MBA at I.T.S ENGINEERING COLLEGE, Greater NoidaAir Cdr Prof L.K. Verma 2014-12-01 13:06
Every one needs experience. How one can compare a fresher from a B-school to match in the industry straight way. Give him some time and give him opportunity to breath in with little ease, then you compare him.

More ever the syllabus & the system needs change to get them better suited in industries, with less time gap after passing out.
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HS Infotech
0 # HS InfotechHS Infotech 2015-05-10 23:21
Thanks for very nice posting we are also same in this business and welcome you to visit our website. Thanks again for great post.......
nice post about industrial training in chandigarh. we also provide industrial training in IT field in chandiagarh and mohali
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