February 11, 2021
Talent Crunch?
Rekha Shah

Talent crunch is the difference between the demand and supply of skilled labor in businesses. Talent crunch causes difficulties in the hiring process. The organizations are unable to find what they are looking for. Despite the availability of skilled labor, the demand of the organizations is not satisfied leading to a talent crunch. In simple words, it the scarcity of good talent or finding the right person for the right job.

A recent study showed that India stands out as the only country out of 20 economies studied that can expect a talent surplus by 2030. In spite of that talent crunch exists in almost all industries in India, including major knowledge concentrated sectors of telecommunications, media, technology, manufacturing and business services.

Source: www.enterpriseai.news/2014/04/08/ibm-system360-original-enterprise-tech

So why does this talent crunch exist? The fact that India is the second most populous country in the world, behind China, with the median age being 28.4 years, talent crunch should not have existed. As every year thousands and lakhs of students graduate or finish their post graduations. The number of job seeking adults have increased but the talent crunch does not seem to reduce. It could be for a plethora of reasons. In my experience, this is what makes the hiring process grueling. I have noticed it is more difficult to find people for creative or posts that require innovation. Creating a team for new business development is not easy. However, its comparatively easier to find people for accounting or financial posts. There is a clear differentiation here. In my opinion, the reason of talent crunch could be dependent on many factors including those of demographics, age and stage of career cycle.

The students who recently pass out from universities lack the working or application knowledge, whereas those who are good with on ground activities do not seem to have the learning knowledge. This gap between learning and application makes the process uneasy. Young adults or Gen Z’s look at the larger picture that of fancy titles and fancier work places, millennials look for flexibility, and new challenges might create some problem.

In my opinion another reason why talent crunch exists could be due to how the education system is designed in our country. Recently passed out students tend to have good book knowledge and can plan strategies but as they enter the field for actual work, the lack of work experience or practical knowledge becomes an issue. Lack in the integration of education facilities and industries might also be a reason for talent crunch.

To reduce the talent crunch we can take insights from some countries which have good education systems in the world. Denmark and Switzerland for example focus on the overall knowledge of their students. They provide secondary and tertiary education in different fields, where a student can choose his/her own choice of subjects.

German education system makes it compulsory for students to attend regularly and participate in both informal and formal activities of the school, this creates a strong base for children to learn and understand the working of various concepts. This also includes training companies which are in charge of keeping the evidence of the students’ attendance in the vocational training and children’s practical commitment (for career schools).

Another way we can reduce the talent crunch by introducing apprenticeship in our systems. Apprenticeship is process conducted by companies where a trainee can learn and earn at the same time. This results in creation of assets for the company and can ease the hiring process.

Apprenticeship is valuable as it trains the students to work on ground level and helps them to understand how the market functions. This makes the trainee eligible to get a good job and in turn helps the company as it gains a good employee.

Internships which are practiced in India should be made more hands on. In my opinion a little change in the thought processes of students is also necessary, which can be bought about by teachers and mentors. Internships should be performed with the hope of learning and not just earning a stipend. Surely stipend is a great motivator, but the students should have the desire to learn.

We at Design Horse, try to create a platform that provides learning and applicating at the same time. We are hiring interns and also adopting the apprenticeship model to enhance the skills. We conduct knowledge sessions every Friday, called Knowledge Friday which everyone looks forward to and helps us to build our team more efficiently.

In conclusion I would like to say that yes, talent crunch is a big problem for us and makes the hiring process challenging but with the growing population and continuously changing education patterns, increase in internships models with maybe an introduction of the apprenticeship model can train the students and make them ready to face the obstacles head on and bring proficiency in the hiring process.