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Pharmaceuticals see apprenticeships as an effective employability tool to achieve high ROI

Nandita Vijay, Bengaluru
Saturday, November 25, 2017, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

The pharmaceutical sector like other industries appreciates the efforts by apprentices, who when hired provide100 per cent – 150 per cent return on investment (ROI) and report a 90 per cent productivity rate. In a pharma industry, apprentices are hired primarily for jobs at the bottom of the pyramid which are entry level openings. These apprentices are suitably placed in the manufacture and marketing department.

“Converting our demographic dividend into a pool of productive workforce will require an overhaul of our approach towards education and skill development. It will call for both learning by doing and learning while doing. Therefore investing in apprenticeship and promoting learning by MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) is the most ideal solution for superior skill development and employability”, Sumit Kumar, vice president, National Employability Through Apprenticeship Program (NETAP), TeamLease Services told Pharmabiz in an interaction.

Apprenticeship employment tool could help better employer expectations than freshers, states the Teamlease Report titled MOOC in apprenticeship for employment and employability. The detailed study is about the effectiveness of apprenticeship in conjunction with MOOCs in bridging the employability gap.

Employers felt that apprentices did exceedingly well on productivity, faster turnaround and return on investment. Further, from a productivity point of view also employers found apprentices to be efficient. The  productivity of apprentices is around 90 per cent indicating learning by doing to be an effective formula to create productive workforce.

Apprentices perceived their employability quotient to be a modest 5.3 on a scale of 10. Employers gave them a rating of 8 indicating high ability to perform a job.

“Apprenticeships are the most effective skilling / employability / employment tool which could help India get closer to its ambitious targets of skilling 500 million and filling 120 million jobs in 24 key sectors over the next 6 years,” said Kumar.

These candidates who are mainly qualified with an ITI diploma and undergraduates have been part of the Massive Open Online Courses. They are employed mostly in manufacture and marketing but in the R&D departments they provide the much needed assistance to the scientists in the labs. Apprentices or apprenticeship programs seems to be well received. From a qualification perspective, technicians with a vocational education constituted the largest pool of apprentices, he said.

The key reason for their higher productivity at work was attributed to the fact that they came in mostly from Tier II and III cities where access to jobs was found wanting. When they got the employment, their intent was to prove themselves by making the best efforts to be recognized by the employer. This made the employers spot that there was 100 per cent – 150 per cent (ROI) and their productivity was recorded as high as 90 per cent.


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