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Tech jobs reign in India but soft skills are essential: LinkedIn study

Tech jobs reign in India but soft skills are essential: LinkedIn study
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The Indian jobs market is dominated by technology roles such as machine learning engineer, application development analyst and back end developer, a report by professional networking giant LinkedIn showed.

The report, titled ‘Top 10 Emerging Jobs in India,’ looked at which jobs grew the fastest between 2013 and 2017. It also identified the skills needed for each role, where talent comes from and where it resides today, the company said in a statement.

The first India edition of the report found that while tech jobs take precedence, technical roles and skills are in demand across sectors like pharmaceuticals, banking and retail. The role of machine learning engineer has grown 43 times in the above-mentioned five-year-period, and the application development analyst’s role has seen a 32x rate of growth, the statement added.

Though technology jobs are in demand, soft skills are most sought-after. While the first five jobs in the report were technical, the sixth emerging job in the country was ‘customer success manager.’ “CSMs, for both tech and non-tech firms, are critical to help onboard, influence and retain customers, and soft skills such as communications and relationship-building play a key role in making their customers successful,” LinkedIn said in the statement.

According to the report, India is expected to add five million jobs every year.

“Soft skills such as relationship building and customer management are equally relevant for jobs of tomorrow – the rise of the CSM as a top emerging job in Asia-Pacific is a key example of this trend. With India set to see the youngest workforce in 2020, recruiters and CHROs will benefit by hiring based on skills, instead of previous job titles, and upskilling should be a focus for all organisations in order to make talent future-ready,” Feon Ang, vice president of Asia Pacific, LinkedIn Talent and Learning Solutions, said in the statement.

The report also identified how companies can choose talent based on where they live. For instance, data scientists are in demand, particularly in cities like Mumbai and NCR, where there is maximum competition for this role.

By leveraging talent data from LinkedIn, pharma giant Novartis India chose Mumbai over Bengaluru as its new office location because of the former’s much larger population of mid-career talent, the statement added.

The report also found that over 50% of professionals in India need on-the-job training as opposed to machine learning and data scientists from the US who come from academia or have a master’s degree.

“As demand for these emerging roles increases, and the lines between various specialist roles blur, the key will be to upskill talent and focus on a candidate’s skills than previous job titles. Transferable skills will be key to adapt to a changing workforce and soft skills will be imperative for success,” the report summed.

After customer success manager, the other positions listed in the report include digital marketing specialist, big data developer, sales recruiter and Python (a computer language) developer.

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