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Artificial Intelligence(AI) would be most wanted skill in India: Randstad  skilling survey

 A  survey conducted by Randstad  in 8 countries with 1099 HR professionals and 1142 employees  found that skilling's popularity is rising rapidly. In fact, the employees  surveyed were almost unanimously enthusiastic about skilling opportunities, as were the vast majority of companies.

 • Most employers view ongoing skilling as imperative to maintaining a competitive edge, but they don't just view skilling as a way to future-proof their organizations. Almost all the employers surveyed agreed that skilling has delivered at least moderate ROI for their organizations.

• Employers were most likely to offer skilling opportunities to managers/team leads. Individual contributors and high-potential employees received far fewer opportunities and leadership had the fewest opportunities to reskill and upskill. These findings remained consistent across virtually every industry represented by our respondents.

 • Somewhat unexpectedly, our survey also found that the training employers offered or encouraged workers to pursue was overwhelmingly around soft skills like adaptability and collaboration, and the employees we surveyed valued those skills to an equal degree.

 • Tech-related skills came in second: Almost 20% fewer employers said they encouraged workers to skill up in tech, rather than soft skills.

 • Employees overwhelmingly agreed that the time they invested in skilling paid off in their careers, and they're hungry for more opportunities to learn.

Perhaps the biggest takeaway from  survey was that employers and employees alike aren't just eager for more skilling opportunities – they're also in need of expert guidance to help them efficiently pursue the best skill-building strategy. Both groups said they would benefit significantly from guidance on skilling, ranging from working with a career coach, to skills assessments and job market data, to a curated list of available resources.

Indian perspective

While India largely mirrored the rest of the regions in our survey, it also offered some fascinating differences.

When it comes to who gets the opportunity to learn, Indian companies are by far the most generous: 77% said training is offered to everyone, far more than any other region in our survey.

• Unlike every other region in our survey, Indian companies skill their leadership equally with their managers and team leads.

• 81% of Indian companies said they maintain skills inventories – far more than any other region.

• Indian companies had the highest percentage of workforce reductions, but were by far the most likely (53%) to offer skilling to separated employees.

• They were also the most optimistic when it came to how effective that skilling was: 98% were confident it helped separated workers find new roles.

Indian workers have a voracious appetite for learning. Among employers, 18% said their workers had enrolled in 10 or more courses during 2020, by far the highest number in our survey. This may explain why they're the least likely to have completed all their coursework.

 • While Indian companies see the value of soft skills like everyone else in our survey, it's the only region where IT skills (65%) and web development (64%) took precedence over soft skills (62%).

• They're also the most bullish on employees' ability to put their new skills to work: 92% said employees' new skills had already delivered value for their organizations.

 • In another major divergence, Indian companies' most-wanted skills for the coming year are:

• AI (45%)

• adaptability (32%)

• creativity (31%)

 In conclusion, skilling is already paying dividends for employers and workers – but it could be even more effective if organizations and all their workers had access to seasoned learning partners who could assess and guide their skilling activities.