By Anish Srikrishna, CEO, Times Professional Learning
As nations move towards normalcy after the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, disruptive changes have led to advances in technology adoption. Professionals have updated their skills to hone their skills and prepare for the modern era, which requires knowledge of technology, futuristic skills and leadership skills in order to meet the diverse challenges of the technological age.
With the steps to normality after a long break through SARS-CoV-2, the employees prepare for the “New Normality 2.0” when they return to their office. During the Covid-19 pandemic, technology emerged as a key factor as it touched the lives of billions with multiple “firsts” as the world dealt with its greatest disruption since World War II. However, the past 18 months have caused persistent anxiety among several employees as new processes and systems were introduced.
As the second wave seems to be fading and the presumed third wave is looming on the horizon, companies have started the process of hybrid working in its first phase of returning to normal. This would mean that the employees would get a break from the household monotony and slowly make the transition from “home office” to “working from office”. Young professionals who were taken into their first-time jobs and worked from their homes throughout the pandemic would be eager to officially enter physical offices and interact with their peers.
Over the past two years, employees have brought themselves up to date in order to keep pace with the disruptive changes caused by the pandemic and to be “skill ready” to master the challenges and demands of the post-Covid economy. We list some actions that professionals would take to prepare for a “new normal” in their workplace.
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Initiate digital transformation
In recent years, several young professionals have acquired new skills as they prepare to apply for a job and remain “industry-ready”. Graduates who completed this academic year (2020-2021) would have examined the industry scenario and addressed the requirements by updating it to an optimal level. Within organizations, employees have had to undergo massive training in order to abide by the changing practices of the organizations. Employees who had their first jobs and who joined the organization in 2019 or early 2020 had to relearn various techniques and processes. In short, professionals have prepared and adapted to work in Covid-induced new organizational environments. The McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) estimates that more than 20 percent of the global workforce is moving away from office space and, thanks to advances in automation and digitization, could still work just as effectively with well-trained employees.
Never in the last century has the vaccination program been more important than it is today. All government and private agencies require that employees be fully vaccinated. The Indian government and several other governments around the world are paying for the vaccination costs to ensure the economy accelerates and businesses open the gates to boost employment. India’s vaccination program is progressing rapidly and, according to figures released by the Department of Health and Family Welfare (as of October 22, 2021), approximately 71.1 million people have received the first dose of vaccine while 29.6 million people have received their second jab as well. This is accelerated by India’s large, again willing workforce and the increasing need for qualified personnel.
Road to recovery!
According to the Center for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), a staggering 15 million people lost their jobs in May 2021 as employment fell from 390.8 million in April 2021 to 375.5 million in May 2021. However, India defied predictions and recovered dramatically in September 2021, with an estimated employment of 406.2 million, the highest in 20 months or since the negative effects of Covid-19 began in March 2020. The largest contributor to employment In September 2021, the number of employees rose by 6.9. increased from 77.1 million in August 2021 to 84.1 million in September 2021. The vaccination program has played a significant role in the recovery of the economy. The data published by the International Monetary Fund forecast India’s economic growth in FY 2022 to 9.5 percent compared to the previous year, negative growth of 7.3 percent.
Learning & further qualification through industry-oriented programs
Many learners are ahead of their time in further education as they understand the need for continuous professional development by gaining various soft skills that they need for their professional needs. The learners have also recognized the importance of technical skills such as automation, artificial intelligence, machine learning, among others, that can lead them to overcome the industry’s skill gap over the past year and a half.
Times Professional Learning (TPL) has filled the skills gap by offering its variety of programs to help young professionals and prepare them for the changing needs of the industry. To achieve these goals, TPL has worked with the IIMs, the IITs and several leading B-Schools in India to train professionals through curated programs in areas such as Analytics, Banking & Finance Services, Management, Operations and Supply Chain, among others help. This learning in new applications to acquire multiple skills with the help of technology can transform learners’ lives as they meet the desired demands of Industry 4.0 and catapult their careers into the post-pandemic era. These programs will address the imbalances caused by the sudden disruptions and improve the industry with staff with contemporary skills.
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