Employability skills can be understood as the transferable skills needed by an individual to make them ‘employable’. Along with good technical understanding and subject knowledge, employers often outline a set of skills that they want from an employee. The important issue is you have completed your degree, you have the technical skills associated with that role, but do you have the ‘soft skills' that can be transferred between different employment sectors and ensure you are successful at interview? These skills are what they believe will equip the employee to carry out their role to the best of their ability. Employability depends on your knowledge, skills and attitudes, how you use those assets, and how you present them to employers.
Some of the employability skills that employer seek these days are commitment towards organization and job, effective communication skills, Interpersonal skills, leadership qualities, right attitude towards the profession, integrity, decision-making, time management, etc. These days the youth is professionally qualified and may be having the best of educational qualifications and degrees but still he fails either during the selection process or in the beginning of his career. This creates a huge gap in the required talent and available talent.
India, being a voluminous country of 100 billion plus population boasts of a huge talent pool, but again the issue arises how many of them are actually employable, how many of them are able to face the adversities and stresses of job market, how many of them have the right attitude and time management skills to carry out the demands of the job
Today employers are seeking and are more concerned about hiring the candidates with right attitude. Many a times they are ready to compromise to some extent on the qualifications, but when it comes to employability skills they want the best and this is what creates a distinction between the success and failure.
In addition to this, employers are always on the look-out for multi-taskers. Candidates with the ability of multi-tasking are usually seen as smart and fast-paced performers. Although every employee can certainly have his core competency as a worker but if he is both able and willing to juggle more than one job roles at the same time, his perceived value in the employer’s estimation goes many notches up.
Adaptability is another key employability skill that new-age organisations are keen to see their employees equipped with. The working world is always in a state of flux. As the dynamics of the organisation change with the passage of time or because of changing external or internal environment, the employees are expected to realign themselves with the changing realities of the workplace. Those employees who find it difficult to be flexible in adjusting to change find themselves alienated and they ultimately become non-performers.
Another crucial component of the desirable skill-set of employees is their ability to unlearn and relearn. All employees who join an organisation come with their own educational and experiential mental baggage. A dynamic and forward-looking organisation will always expect its employees to shed this mental baagage as early as possible and reorient themselves according to the needs and requirements of the organisation. An employee is willing to abandon an old mindset and acquire a new one and also abandon his old skill-set and acquire a new one will always be seen as a high-value asset by the employer.
Last but not the least, all progressive and growing organisations want employees to take it forward on the trajectory of growth and development. An employee who is always forthcoming in taking up new challenges and responsibilities will always be sought after. The employer would always like the employees to be his partners in progress and not stumbling blocks. Therefore, a key employability skill here is the ability and willingness to be bold and adventurous in embracing new job challenges.
Dr Deepti Sinha
JEMTEC-School of Law