IBM bets on ‘new collar’ skills to help fix employability issues
IBM is working with various agencies and governments around the world to upskill individuals, including children and even senior population, to help them be ready for the jobs of the future.
The primary focus areas for upskilling are data analytics, blockchain, artificial intelligence, and machine learning among other cutting-edge technologies.
Describing these skills as the "new collar", IBM is hoping this will help fix "employability issues" in the country.
"Academy knowledge is important, but if you don't have the works or the life skills, it is astonishing that we have 7 million graduates, 23% of them are employable and rest are not. One it is, you have employability issues where they do not have the right skills. How do we start early," said Manoj Balachandran, Leader, CSR, IBM India.
"For students and adults, we are preparing them on emerging technologies - primarily teaching them AI, Blockchain, cyber security, cloud. We provide content either live, which is delivering content in the classroom, or we record it and deliver this through digital platforms. We are very convinced that we need to have an offline model deliberately because not everybody has access to digital learning platforms," added Jean-Christophe Knoertzer, VP, IBM Citizenship, Global Markets.
In India, IBM is working with the likes of Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, Niti Aayog, and others for various upskilling initiatives. It has also partnered with Nasscom to introduce a 'new-collar employability skills program' aimed at upskilling 2,500 college students. IBM has also partnered with CBSE to introduce Artificial Intelligence in curriculum.
For this, IBM launched a pilot project in more than 1,000 schools in cities such as Delhi, Bengaluru Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad, where along with CBSE, the performance of the students will be jointly evaluated for the new syllabus.
To back its upskilling initiatives, IBM has conducted a study titled 'Companies with purpose: The future of business' which revealed that 79% of the respondents in India believe in promoting quality jobs and skills, including investing in the future of the workforce as that is what is going to drive business.
According to the study, "At least 71% of respondents in every country agreed that corporations should equally prioritize delivering profits with other considerations. 4 out of 5 respondents globally say corporations should prioritize purpose as much as profit."