employability, particularly in the IT sector, of thousands of
engineering graduates hitting the Indian job market every year is
prompting academia and industry leaders to make efforts to end the
However the interaction between academics and the IT sector is
still not on wide scale nor is it regular even though alarm bells
have been ringing for a few years now, industry leaders
"Quite many initiatives are there (mostly at one company to many
institutes level)," Raghu Bhargava, chairman of the Bangalore
Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCIC), told IANS.
"But sustained initiatives are needed, which facilitate regular
interaction and coordination supporting small and medium IT and
ITeS (IT enabled services) enterprises as well," he said.
The BCIC plans to set up a task force to "address on a continuing
basis" the issue of interface between academia and IT, ITeS
industry leaders to restructure the courses to ensure graduates
have desired skills needed by this sector, Bhargava, chief
executive officer of JSoft solutions, a Bangalore-based IT firm,
JSoft is part of the $3.7 billion Jindal group headed by Sajjan
Jindal with interests in steel, aluminium, ports and energy.
The task force idea stemmed from an interaction between a group of
academics and representatives of IT and ITeS firms in Bangalore
the BCIC organized early this month.
Holding the exercise in Bangalore was apt as the Karnataka capital
is India's IT hub and home to, as the BCIC noted, about 800,000
workers in the ICT (information, communication and technology)
The city is home to Indian IT majors Infosys and Wipro as well
huge offices of international biggies like Accenture, Honeywell,
Oracle, IBM and scores of call centres and BPO offices.
The IT activities in the city covers chip designing to operating
systems, cloud solution, business solution, to new generation
mobile application and embedded software.
The city is also a hot destination for engineering courses.
However all these have not bridged "the glaring gap - that of
industry ready talents. Each firm is spending a sizeable amount of
money to train the new recruits/freshers out of college so that
they can work in real/corporate world. The issue is more visible
and acute for smaller firms," the BCIC noted.
Bhargava said with the interaction it arranged, the BCIC "has
triggered a debate at a platform level."
He said the BCIC planned the interaction in the backdrop of a 2011
World Bank Survey which also talked of the severe mismatch between
the actual requirement of IT-ITeS industry and the skills of
graduates passing out from various institutions in India.
Among the suggestions at the interaction were to encourage faculty
to go on sabbatical to industry/vice-versa and a revamp of
On the drawbacks in the present recruitment process, Bhargava
They are: "Short interview cycle, and thereby validation of
creative skills takes a back seat compared to scores; offers made
too early (one year before the course completion); recruitment in
the 7th semester or 6th semester sometimes make the youth dis-engage
with the college curriculum once they have a job offer. This
needs to be stopped."
He said "companies vie for each other for day 1 placement; the
placement office does not allow students to get multiple offers.
As a result some students accept jobs (out of security) which they
are not really keen on. A better system of match-making at
"The practice of deferred placement is attracting lot of flak. The
does not know where he stands for months together. Judging
placement success by size of offer is what media gives credence
too. This is a poor practice as salary is but one indicator,"
(V. S. Karnic can be
contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)