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Pharma industry sees need to increase apprenticeship to strengthen talent supply chain

Nandita Vijay, Bengaluru
Wednesday, October 26, 2022, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Pharma industry in the country is of the view that to strengthen the talent supply chain it is important to increase apprenticeship.
Over the past couple of years, there has been significant progress in the adoption of apprenticeships in India. As businesses see stronger return on investments, more employers are looking to leverage apprenticeships as the key source of talent. Specifically entry level positions in manufacturing processes are on the rise.
There is a big demand for apprenticeship in the pharma sector specifically manufacture. To this end the engineering & industrial operations are driving talent demand in the form of apprentices from repair-maintenance services to electricians and shop floor assistants.
Kaushik Desai, pharma consultant, said “The apprenticeship for budding pharmacists is very essential to shape their career choice and would equip them to be better entry level supervisors. The industry would also benefit by training apprentices and later absorbing in the areas of operations. This initiative would pave the way for better employment opportunities.”

The challenge over here is the right remuneration and the seriousness in training. In the past, it is observed that such apprentices are put in not so productive jobs and engaged in more of the supporting activities. There shall be a structured program with a monitoring mechanism with regular feedback so that there is a win-win situation at the end of the apprenticeship period, added Desai.

The Union government’s PLI (production linked incentive) scheme to boost manufacturing in India and this will also continue to witness positive momentum for graduate apprentices.
Sumit Kumar, chief business officer, TeamLease Degree Apprenticeship, said, “In fact, small businesses are the most optimistic and report a doubling of NAO for Jul – Dec 2022, to 70% up from 32%. Additionally, gender neutrality in apprentice engagement is evident amongst employers across industries as well.”
A lot of the positive optimism in the ecosystem is also driven by the push from the New Education Policy 2020 and the increase in academia-industry partnerships to boost degree apprenticeships. In fact, locations beyond Tier I have also seen an increase in apprentice engagement. While the industry has taken few steps towards simplification, there needs to be more aggressive efforts on this front. We should emphasise of adoption of degree apprentices and link it with New Education Policy, added Kumar.


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