National Employability Report
Engineering Graduates
Annual Report 2011
Table of Contents
Introduction
5
Executive Summary
7
Methodology
9
I. Employability by Sectors
10
II. Employabilit...
Introduction
The importance of higher education in relation to the progress of the
individual and the nation cannot be ov...
Such results are indispensible to enable targeted intervention in different
groups and kinds of colleges. At the same time...
Executive Summary
The key findings of the present study are as follows:
The percentage of ready-to-deploy engineers for I...
The long tail of employable engineers is getting missed out by
corporations.
The report found that the top 100 colleges ha...
Methodology
The report is based on a sample of more than 55,000 engineering
students from 250+ engineering colleges acros...
I. Employability by Sectors
Engineers are absorbed in many different job profiles and sectors in the industry. The major
s...
skills, together with requisite cognitive skills to respond to training in a short period of time.
Considering these rathe...
l
Business Process Outsourcing Companies: A large proportion of candidates(40.69%) are
eligible for the BPO industry, bot...
II. Employability by Gender
It has been said that the progress of a society can be measured by the condition of its women....
l
l
It may be observed that the southern states have a more balanced gender ratio than their
northern counterparts. This...
Fig. 4. Scatter-Plot of Engineering Population MFR vs. Total Population MFR
(b) Employability by Gender
The analysis show...
Gender
Males Females Difference
English
474
474
0
Quantitative Ability
505
470
35
Logical Ability
461
459
2
...
III. Employability by Region
It is important to understand how employability varies by region. Do the demographic factors
...
The results of the analysis are presented in Fig. 7.
Sector
% decrease
% decrease
Tier 3 Cities
(T1 to T2)
(T2 to T3)
Ti...
Tier 1
Cities
Tier 2
Cities
English
476
467
455
9
12
Quantitative
Ability
486
485
459
1
34
Logical
Ability
...
engineering colleges in any similarly sized state. This leads to a fierce competition for
engineering education and only t...
number of engineering colleges (~600) as compared to Andhra Pradesh (~750), it has a
lower employability percentage (8.33 ...
(c) Employability in Metros vs. Non-Metros
The research analyzed employability of candidates coming out of colleges in met...
candidates who born and brought up in metros have better exposure to computers and in
particular, computer programming, an...
in as high as 1 in every 9 candidates and as low as 1 in every 200 in Chennai. Even
though Bengaluru has similar IT servic...
IV. Employability Variance in Campuses
It is known that the quality of intake, education and outcome varies dramatically a...
The study also investigated what skills are lacking in students of Tier 2 campuses (see
Figure 16). There is a gap of 22, ...
Fig. 18 depicts the difference in skills of students from government and engineering colleges.
It was observed that there ...
The following observations can be made:
l
l
The best of colleges have employability as high as 50%, whereas the bottom 3...
Fig. 20. Employability Percentage of Students across Colleges for IT Product Companies
One can observe that IT product em...
A. States Included in each Region
Appendix
The report provides various comparisons across regions. For these
comparisons...
B. Employability by State
Employability variation of the state of campus residence has been explored in detail for IT
serv...
Fig. 23. Employability in BPO Companies across States and Union Territories
32 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability R...
165
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National employability report_engineers_2011

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  • 1. National Employability Report Engineering Graduates Annual Report 2011
  • 2. Table of Contents Introduction 5 Executive Summary 7 Methodology 9 I. Employability by Sectors 10 II. Employability by Gender 13 (a) Gender Ratio in Higher Education 13 (b) Employability by Gender 15 III. Employability by Region 17 (a) Employability by Tier of Cities 17 (b) Employability across States 19 (c) Employability in Metros vs. Non-Metros 22 (d) Employability in Key Cities 23 IV. Employability Variance in Campuses 25 (a) Employability in top-tier Campuses vs. the rest 25 (b) Employability in Govt. and Private Colleges 26 (c) Employability Variance across Colleges 27 Appendix 30
  • 3. Introduction The importance of higher education in relation to the progress of the individual and the nation cannot be overstated. In today's world, the intellectual capital of a nation is its biggest strength in driving socioeconomic growth. For an individual, higher education is not only a means of intellectual pursuit, but also a catalyst to become self-dependent financially to lead a respectable life. We as a Nation have been the beneficiaries of the new knowledge based world economy and so has been the consistently growing Indian middle class. To continue on this growth path and allow its advantages to trickle down to the masses, we need to continue to audit the quality of our higher education system, identify gaps and implement constructive interventions for a better tomorrow. In 2009, Aspiring Minds released the first National Employability Report for technical graduates. The report, for the first time, defined employability for different corporate sectors and profiles, and analyzed the percentage of technical graduates employable in each sector. The reported low employability served as an eye-opener, suggesting a pressing need for education and policy reforms. It also detailed how a major proportion (7080%) of employable engineering graduates is outside the top 100 engineering colleges. Given that most corporations hire only from the toptier campuses, this creates an artificial fall in the supply of employable engineering graduates and deprives many talented individuals from even getting an opportunity to a hiring process. Covered widely by national and international media, the report successfully identified key problems affecting the education-employment ecosystem in India, and led to a constructive debate. The present edition is an expanded and more detailed report based on most recent data – more than 55,000 engineers who graduated in 2011. It goes deeper to identify patterns in employability across different regions and kinds of colleges, analyzing in detail the distribution of employability. Herein, it studies how employability varies across different groups: l How many employable females vs. males graduate every year? l Which regions exhibit high employability, and why? l How different is employability in private and government colleges? l Are most colleges producing the same percentage of employable candidates, or is there a wide variation? Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 5
  • 4. Such results are indispensible to enable targeted intervention in different groups and kinds of colleges. At the same time, it is a first step toward hypothesizing the causes for low employability. Such an analysis allows one to measure some key drivers of economic and intellectual growth. This measurement provides a tracking mechanism to see how India is progressing year on year toward building a powerful, enlightened and equitable nation. Aspiring Minds is committed to actively provide feedback about employability and higher education to all stakeholders through a yearly report card. With commitment to the development and progress of higher education in India! Varun Aggarwal Co-founder and Director Aspiring Minds 6 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 5. Executive Summary The key findings of the present study are as follows: The percentage of ready-to-deploy engineers for IT jobs is dismally low at 2.68%. Even though India produces more than five lakh engineers annually, only 17.45% of them are employable for the IT services sector, while a dismal 3.51% are appropriately trained to be directly deployed on projects. Further, only 2.68% are employable in IT product companies, which require greater understanding of computer science and algorithms. An economy with a large percent of unemployable qualified candidates is not only inefficient, but socially dangerous. The right training, at one end, and employability assessments acting as feedback at the other, will help both in goal-setting and tracking progress to make a larger proportion of engineers in India employable. There are considerably more males than females in engineering, but with equal employability. The ratio of male-to-female engineers is 1.96, which is higher than the population ratio (1.06), but much lower than that of other countries, such as United States of America (4.61). The percentage of employable male and female engineers is similar across sectors, yet the current ratio of females to males employed in IT industry is lower than that of the engineering population. Efforts are required to encourage more females in engineering education and jobs across the nation. Concentrating on increasing quantity of engineers has impacted quality drastically. With regard to employability percentage in different states, it was found that employability decreases logarithmically with the number of colleges in the state (in sync with Arrow's hypothesis). This clearly shows that opening more colleges is directly impacting the percentage of employable engineers graduating every year. The need of the hour is to focus on not opening more colleges, but improving the quality of education in existing institutions. Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 7
  • 6. The long tail of employable engineers is getting missed out by corporations. The report found that the top 100 colleges have higher employability as compared to the rest of the colleges (as much as two to four times). Despite this, more than 70% of employable candidates for any sector are in campuses other than the top 100. It was found that 50% of employable candidates for IT services companies and 28% of employable candidates for IT product companies are not even in the top 750 colleges, and thus form invisible pool to most employers. This signals that a large proportion of employable engineers are ending up without any opportunity, which is a dangerous trend for higher education. The quality of education varies drastically, with only a very few colleges at the top of the quality ladder. With regard to employability distribution among campuses, it was found that the quality of education falls steeply among the top-ranked colleges, implying that even colleges ranked very closely have very different quality of education. A large number of colleges are at exceptionally low employability: bottom 45 percentile campuses have less than 1 in 100 candidates employable in an IT product company, while the bottom 20 percentile campuses have none. This means there is an urgent need to reduce the quality-gap between colleges and get them above a minimum threshold. 8 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 7. Methodology The report is based on a sample of more than 55,000 engineering students from 250+ engineering colleges across multiple Indian states. All these candidates graduated in 2011.1 The analysis and findings of this report are based on the results of these students on AMCAT: Aspiring Minds Computer Adaptive Test, which is India's largest and only standardized employability test. AMCAT covers all objective parameters for determining employability in the IT/ITeS sector such as English communication, Quantitative aptitude, problem-solving skills and Computer Science and Programming skills. The test was conducted under a proctored and credible environment ensured by Aspiring Minds. Employability has been quantified based on the benchmarking studies done at various companies in different sectors by Aspiring Minds. Currently, AMCAT is used by more than 120 companies, including five of the top-ten IT services companies in India, for their assessment and recruitment solutions. The benchmark for employability in a profile and sector is defined by a theoretical understanding and empirical validation of the knowledge, cognitive skills and domain expertise required. The benchmarks established for different profiles ensure both elimination of unsuccessful candidates for a job (type I error) and inclusion of all candidates who will be successful in the given job (elimination of type II error). The same has been validated among multiple companies in various sectors. Together with the AMCAT scores, the various demographic details of the candidates are also captured by Aspiring Minds' testing platform, which has enabled a comprehensive and meaningful analysis provided in the report. The sample was statistically balanced across various parameters to be representative of the true technical graduate population. A carefully chosen stratified sample was used for the study. 1 Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 9
  • 8. I. Employability by Sectors Engineers are absorbed in many different job profiles and sectors in the industry. The major sectors employing engineers in large numbers were identified and studied to determine the percentage of employable engineers across the nation. The criteria for employability are based on the studies conducted with various corporations in these sectors, benchmarking their current employees in various profiles through objective assessment based on AMCAT and establishing feedback through on-job performance data. These benchmarks serve as a standard for several large-sized companies across the nation.  Sector Employability IT Services 17.45% IT Product 2.68% Knowledge Process Outsourcing Graph 9.22% Hardware Networking 36.57% Business Process Outsourcing 40.69% Fig. 1. Employability of Engineering Graduates in Different Sectors The employability of engineering graduates in different sectors is shown in Fig. 1. The following observations can be made: l l IT Product Sector: The employability in the IT product sector is exceptionally low, to the order of 2.68%.2 This is because jobs in IT product companies require a strong understanding of computer programming and algorithms. But the study found that the candidates strongly lacked the required skills: around 92% of graduating engineers do not have the required programming and algorithm skills required for IT product companies, whereas 56% show lack of soft-skills and cognitive skills. One may note that the skills required by the IT product companies at the entry-level are very much a part of the curriculum of engineering colleges, which is a worrying sign for higher education. IT Services Companies: The employability in IT services companies is 17.45%. It should be noted that this has been calculated according to the current hiring philosophy of IT services companies, where the candidate is not expected to already possess the required software skills or soft skills, but is imparted the training over a period of 3 to 6 months. The hiring criterion for this industry, thus, is that the candidate should be trainable in technical and soft skills. This requires both a basic command of language and technical Calculated across only those branches that have computer programming as a subject. 2 10 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 9. skills, together with requisite cognitive skills to respond to training in a short period of time. Considering these rather lax requirements, the fact that only 17.45% of the graduates are trainable into software engineers within a period of 3 to 6 months, is alarming to say the least. The research further shows that approximately 54% engineers are rejected because they are not soft-skill trainable in a short period of time, whereas around 46% lose on technical trainability. Apart from focus on core technical skills, technical trainability can be improved by adopting a quantitative approach to engineering problems. Bridging courses to hone English skills of the candidates is a definite step toward improving soft-skills trainability. l Small and Medium Sized Enterprises: Whereas large companies invest considerably in trainings, small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) do not find it viable to build training facilities or invest time in it. They want to hire ready-to-deploy manpower. For them, the engineering graduates should be able to learn on the job and start contributing effectively as soon as possible, typically in a month's time. This requires substantial competence in domain skills. Whereas these companies do not expect the person to bring in in-depth knowledge of computer science, the minimum expectation is to be able to write a decent piece of code for a given problem, and the ability to debug and submit a working program. Such candidates, who are software-industry ready, are just 3.25%. This explains why SMEs find it so hard and time-consuming to hire. If not corrected, this trend is poised to become a major impediment to the growth of entrepreneurship and IT companies in India. One may recognize that the best economies in the world are sustained by a strong SMEs sector, which in India is likely to suffer because of the lack of right skills. l l Knowledge Process Outsourcing Industry: As revealed by the research, the Knowledge Process Outsourcing industry is likely to find 9 out of every 100 engineers employable. Highly developed written communication and analytical skills are a must for this sector. Though most engineers do not exhibit the required competence in English communication (78% do not), a considerable number (56%) miss out on analytical and quantitative skills. This calls for a fundamental shift in college instruction and assessment methodology, which should be more inclined to developing analytical thinking and critical reasoning than learning by rote. Hardware and Networking Profiles: This sector comprises roles involving technical support and network management. Candidates employed in this sector manage hardware and networks within corporations, or carry out servicing roles providing support to consumers. A good 36.75% candidates are employable in the hardware and networking sector, according to the study. A person trainable in this role should exhibit basic understanding and usage of computers—both hardware and software—as well as be comfortable in English and exhibit a problem-solving approach. Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 11
  • 10. l Business Process Outsourcing Companies: A large proportion of candidates(40.69%) are eligible for the BPO industry, both in tele-calling and backend processes. However, graduate engineers do not form the preferred employable group for these companies due to the belief that these roles cannot match their expectations, both in terms of remuneration and job satisfaction. In summary, there is a long way to go before engineering graduates in India become employable for various industries and job profiles. Such an economy, with candidates possessing appropriate qualification but unable to exhibit the right competence, is not only inefficient but socially dangerous. More focused trainings and feedback through employability assessments at various times will help improve the scenario. 12 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 11. II. Employability by Gender It has been said that the progress of a society can be measured by the condition of its women. This makes it imperative to study women's position in the higher education and technical revolution in India. It is also important to understand whether there is any evidence for the traditional belief that men make for better engineers! This section tries to answer two questions: l How many women are opting for higher education in the technical domains in India? l Are men and women equally employable? (a) Gender Ratio in Higher Education In India, There are 106 males for every 100 females, making the sex ratio 1.06. In contrast, the sex ration in engineering colleges is 1.96. This shows that a lower proportion of females make it to engineering courses as compared to males. There could be multiple reasons for this, which are beyond the scope of the report. Interestingly, India fares much better in gender ratio as compared to the United States. A 2009 study suggested that the ratio of male to female engineers in USA was as drastic as 4.61! Among different branches, it was found that computer science and electrical engineering disciplines had the least number of females.3 The gender-ratio changes with respect to the state of the campus were studied. The MFR (Male to Female Ratios) are shown in Fig. 2. Fig. 2. Male-Female Ratio across states & Union Territories *The male-female ratios for Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and North Eastern States have not been included due to small sample size. Their indicative ratios are 9.88, 5.42 and 4.58 respectively. http://it-jobs.fins.com/Articles/SB130221786789702297/Women-Engineering-Graduates-at-15-Year-Low http:// www.engineeringschools.com/women-in-engineering.html 3 Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 13
  • 12. l l It may be observed that the southern states have a more balanced gender ratio than their northern counterparts. This is in line with the population gender ratios across the nation, where northern India has higher male-female ratio than southern India. Kerala emerges as an outlier, being the only state having more females than males in engineering colleges. The regional comparison4 is shown in Fig. 3. Fig. 3. Male-Female Ratio across Regions An analysis was done to identify the states where the population MFR was not in line with that of engineering campuses. Such a comparison is necessary to acquire some interesting insights: in which states, inspite of a lower female to male ratio, more females go to engineering schools; and for which states, even though the female to male ratio is more balanced, lesser females end up becoming engineers. Given that the population MFR and engineer MFR are quite different in magnitude, a direct correspondence can't be hypothesized. However, a high correlation between population and engineer MFR should indicate that similar causes are responsible for both. A scatter-plot of engineering population MFR vs. total population MFR (data from Census 2011) is shown in Fig. 4. Engineering MFR vs. Population MFR shows a correlation of a 0.34, whereas after removing the three outliers, the correlation shifts to 0.58. This shows that the total population MFR and engineer MFR do have some common variance and probably some common causes. But given that the correlation is only moderately high, it shows there are independent factors influencing the two ratios. It can be observed that even though Bihar, Jharkhand and Gujarat have a moderate population MFR as compared to other states, these states possess a very high engineering MFR. This suggests that for some reason, fewer females become engineers in these states with respect to their population statistics. On the other hand, Delhi and Haryana, even though they have a moderately high MFR, have more females becoming engineers. The reasons for such a variance are beyond the scope of this report, which could be lower education levels for girls, socio-economic considerations, etc. States included in each region are listed in Appendix, Section A. 4 14 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 13. Fig. 4. Scatter-Plot of Engineering Population MFR vs. Total Population MFR (b) Employability by Gender The analysis shows that employability for males and females is almost equal, with the maximum difference being a single percentage point for IT Services and KPO. The employability of males vs. females is depicted in Fig. 5. Sector Males Females IT Services 17.81% 16.75% IT Product 2.88% 2.29% KPO 9.63% 8.41% Hardware Networking 36.51% 36.69% BPO 40.57% Graph 40.91% Fig. 5. Employability - Males vs. Females This slight difference in the employability of males vs. females is majorly due to the difference in Quantitative Ability scores (see Fig. 6 for average AMCAT scores of males vs. females). The 35-point difference in scores corresponds to 12 points of percentile difference. Though these results show the same trends as observed globally, they need to be interpreted from a nuanced perspective, given the debate on the bias of standardized testing scores with regard to gender. Note that no significant difference in scores is observed in any other modules. Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 15
  • 14. Gender Males Females Difference English 474 474 0 Quantitative Ability 505 470 35 Logical Ability 461 459 2 Computer Programming 413 406 Graph 7 Fig. 6. Average AMCAT Scores - Males vs. Females Inspite of the equal employability of males vs. females, the ratio of males-females in software industry is not same as that in campuses. Industry Statistics in 2009 showed an MFR of 2.33 for IT services. This is higher in comparison to the ratio found in engineering campuses. This shows that fewer proportion of female engineers are employed in the IT industry as compared to males. The reasons for this—an analysis of which is beyond the scope of the report—could be many, such as lower proportion of females opting for a professional career; females not being comfortable with relocation; preference of males by corporations; biases in hiring processes; etc. In summary, we find that the ratio of male-to-female engineers is 1.96, which is almost twice the population ratio (1.06), but much lower than that of other countries such as United States of America (4.61). It was found that states with higher male-to-female engineer ratio also show high population gender ratio, indicating that both these factors may have common influence/cause. Finally, the employability of male and female engineers is similar, yet the current ratio of employed males to females in IT industry is higher than that of the engineering population. 16 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 15. III. Employability by Region It is important to understand how employability varies by region. Do the demographic factors of a region influence its employability? Do certain cities exhibit very different employability patterns than their state? This section looks at employability percentages by grouping campuses (and students' permanent address) by their region, the regions being defined according to different demographic parameters. In cases where significant differences emerge, an attempt is made to understand the causes. Very likely, the observation of these differences will prompt other studies to find the causes for these differences, leading to proposals of intervention. Herein is studied the employability by tier of city, across states, and the employability variation between metros and non-metros and some key large cities. (a) Employability by Tier of Cities It may be argued that colleges located in Tier 1 cities provide better exposure to students. They may also be the preferred destination for students who have the luxury of choice (and are hence academically superior) and probably the first choice for candidates permanently residing in Tier 1 cities. Tiers were allocated to cities according to population, with the following benchmark (Table 1): Table 1. Tier of Cities Tier Population 1. Greater than 25 lakh 2. 5-25 lakh 3. 0-5 lakh For the analysis, the top 100 campuses were removed from the data set, since these have their own brand presence attracting students from across the country, and are therefore outliers in their respective cities. Most of these colleges are the IITs and the NITs, which source candidates through a nationwide exam. Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 17
  • 16. The results of the analysis are presented in Fig. 7. Sector % decrease % decrease Tier 3 Cities (T1 to T2) (T2 to T3) Tier 1 Cities Tier 2 Cities IT Services 17.23% 16.53% 4.06% 12.29% 25.65% IT Product 2.48% 2.02% 18.55% 1.54% 23.76% BPO 41.23% 40.38% 2.06% 35.64% 11.74% KPO 9.02% 7.99% 11.42% 6.13% 23.28% 36.93% 36.26% 1.81% 30.77% 15.14% Hardware Networking Fig. 7. Employability across Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 Cities One may observe a consistent drop in employability in all sectors according to the tier of city of the campus location. Whereas the difference in employability from Tier 1 to Tier 2 is generally low, the decrease from Tier 2 to Tier 3 city colleges is drastic. Among different sectors, the drop in employability from Tier 1 to Tier 2 cities is maximum in the IT products and KPO sector. This shows that when higher-level skills are required (English, in case of KPOs, and technical ability in case of IT Products), there is a larger variation between talent quality in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. On the other hand, requirement of a lower skill-level tempers this difference. The employability in different sectors apart from IT Services is quite similar in absolute terms across cities. This clearly shows that Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities cannot be neglected from a recruitment perspective. The data shows that at least one out of every six engineering colleges is in a Tier 3 city. This means that at least 12% of engineers employable in IT Services are in Tier 3 cities - an absolute number of approximately 13,000. These candidates could possibly fill up entry-level hiring needs of several IT Services companies. The study investigated the skills deficient among students in Tier 3 cities (see Fig. 8). Contrary to popular opinion, English language skills do not create the major difference in employability. It is rather the quantitative ability and analytical skills, which make these students ineligible for employment. This points towards better teaching practices through problem solving and analysis. It is also surprising to see that the difference in ability in Computer Programming and Algorithms is not too much. Teaching in colleges across tiers of cities though similar, but is inadequate as far as Computer Programming and Algorithms is concerned. 18 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 17. Tier 1 Cities Tier 2 Cities English 476 467 455 9 12 Quantitative Ability 486 485 459 1 34 Logical Ability 456 456 430 0 26 Programming 405 402 391 3 11 Average Scores Computer Tier 3 Cities Tier 2 Diff. Btw. Diff. Btw. Tier 1 & Tier 1 & Tier 2 Graph Fig. 8. Average Scores across Tier1, Tier2 and Tier 3 Cities (b) Employability across States The research looked at the employability percentages according to states where the different engineering campuses are located. The employability percentage for different states for IT Services is shown in Fig. 9: Fig. 9. Employability in IT Services across States and Union Territories. (Some states omitted due to low sample size) The following may be observed through this data: l l Looking at the employability across states and UTs, it is observed that employability in IT services companies is highest in North, followed by East, then West, and then South. Delhi and Bihar-Jharkhand emerge as states with the highest employability. Delhi has emerged as an education hub with high standards of education at all levels, attracting the best minds from across the country. Whereas Bihar-Jharkhand may seem paradoxical, one may understand this trend by the high self-selection effect. Bihar and Jharkhand, put together, have around 35 engineering colleges as compared to 70-80 Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 19
  • 18. engineering colleges in any similarly sized state. This leads to a fierce competition for engineering education and only the best end up getting into engineering campuses, majority of which are run by the government. Contrast this with Uttar Pradesh (300+engineeringcolleges), Andhra Pradesh (700+ engineering colleges) or Tamil Nadu (~600engineering colleges), where engineering colleges are unable to completely fill their seats.5 Explanation: Apart from other factors, it can be hypothesized that just the sheer number of engineering colleges in a state negatively influences the percent employability. This hypothesis is inspired by Kenneth Arrow's idea of higher education being a filter. To check this hypothesis, the relationship between the percent employability and the number of engineering colleges in each state was analyzed. A scatter plot between employability percent and logarithm of number of colleges is shown in Fig. 10: Fig. 10. Scatter Plot between Employability Percent and Logarithm of Number of Colleges Interestingly, a very high correlation of –0.834 was found between IT services employability and the number of colleges in the state. If the two outliers are removed, the correlation becomes –0.91! This means that employability falls logarithmically with the increase in number of colleges in a state. Further, the result is not improved by normalizing the count by population or size of the state. The simplicity of the result is indeed intriguing, and shows how adding more engineering colleges leads to a fall in the percentage of employable engineers. Even though the number of colleges is a major factor in guiding employability in a particular state, it does not explain it completely. For instance, even though Tamil Nadu has lower http://www.thehindu.com/news/states/tamil-nadu/article2337603.ece. http://studyplaces.com/articles/411338-1-2-lakh-mba-b-tech-seats-remain-vacant-in-up-technical-institutes http://ibnlive.in.com/news/engineering-seats-remain-vacant/191073-60-114.html 5 20 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 19. number of engineering colleges (~600) as compared to Andhra Pradesh (~750), it has a lower employability percentage (8.33 as compared to 12.73). Similarly, Delhi has more colleges than Bihar, but a higher employability. Employability for a state is a complex interplay of several socio-economic and developmental factors. However, this does call for a greater thrust on improving the quality of engineering education than just the number. Analysis of IT product sector employability: The IT products employability was analyzed to find out whether the same trends and hypotheses are valid for this sector too (see Fig. 11). Fig. 11. Employability in IT Product Companies across States and Union Territories The observations are as follows: l l l It can be observed that the major trends remain similar to those in IT services, though there are some minor differences. Three states, i.e., Uttarakhand, Kerala and Chhattisgarh, show largely different ranks with respect to employability in IT services and IT product companies. Whereas Kerala and Chhattisgarh better their position with regard to IT Product employability, Uttarakhand slips down. This is strongly indicative of better education within colleges in Kerala& Chhattisgarh. The correlation of logarithm of number of campuses to employability is –0.72,down from –0.83 in the case of IT services companies. One hypothesis is that whereas the quality of intake is a major factor in IT services employability, it is tempered by quality of education at college-level in case of IT Product sector, which requires considerable knowledge of computer science. The number of colleges being a proxy for intake quality has a lesser impact on IT product employability, as compared to IT services employability. Employability in other sectors across states shows similar trends. Their respective trends are documented in Appendix B. Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 21
  • 20. (c) Employability in Metros vs. Non-Metros The research analyzed employability of candidates coming out of colleges in metro cities, in comparison to those in non-metro cities. The general view remains that colleges in metros produce more employable candidates due to better exposure and education, which explains why parents often prefer colleges in metros as opposed to others in making an admission decision. The employability figures based on the analysis are reported in Fig. 12: Sectors Metros IT Services 18.87% Non-Metros % Decrease 16.74% 11.29% 2.91% 2.56% 12.03% KPO 10.41% 8.62% 17.20% Hardware Networking 37.71% 36.00% 4.53% BPO 41.88% 40.08% Graph 4.30% IT Product Fig. 12. Metro vs. Non-Metro Colleges As it may be noted, even though colleges in non-metro cities have lower employability, the difference is not too much. Only the decrease in employability in KPOs is much higher, for which English comprehension and writing skills are very important. This is in line with the earlier analysis which showed that there wasn't much difference in the employability of candidates from colleges in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. Sectors Metros Non-Metros % Decrease IT Services 20.18% 17.63% 12.64% 3.85% 2.78% 27.79% 12.02% 9.25% 23.04% Hardware 35.97% Networking 36.90% –0.19% BPO 40.89% Graph –0.76% IT Product KPO 39.31% Fig. 13. Metros vs. Non-Metros: Employability by city of permanent residence In contrast, when the employability of candidates with permanent residence in metros and non-metros was compared (see Fig. 13), the trends came out to be quite different. There is an appreciable gap in employability for IT product companies, and the gap in employability for KPOs increases further. There are two potential hypotheses to explain this. Firstly, 22 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 21. candidates who born and brought up in metros have better exposure to computers and in particular, computer programming, and thus they are more employable than their nonmetro counterparts. If the colleges were imparting computer programming education adequately, this gap due to intake impact should have narrowed. Secondly, English language skills are very important for Knowledge Process Outsourcing companies, and candidates born and brought up in metros seem to acquire better English skills due to day-to-day exposure to a larger English speaking population. This clearly shows that students coming from non-metros are disadvantaged to a certain extent. Thus, there is a requirement of better school education and exposure to computers and English to students in non-metros. Secondly, colleges need to improve education methodology to be able to erase such differences. On the other hand, as noted earlier, there is no merit to the argument that colleges in the metros automatically produce more employable candidates. (d) Employability in Key Cities The study also compared employability within students graduating out of different metro cities in the country. The results are reported in Fig. 14. IT Services IT Product KPO Hardware Networking BPO Delhi 39.78 10.91 27.59 53.37 54.78 Kolkata 25.30 4.51 14.98 44.33 47.31 Bengaluru 16.79 2.93 8.62 36.59 40.92 Hyderabad 16.52 1.70 8.28 35.94 40.64 Mumbai+Pune 16.12 1.17 7.45 38.34 42.62 8.35 0.53 3.40 26.60 32.19 Chennai Fig. 14. Employability in different metro cities The following observations are made: l The trends are similar to those with regard to employability in states. Delhi (North) shows the highest employability, followed by Kolkata (East) and cities in the West, while the lowest employability figures were observed among colleges in Southern cities. The skew in employability is quite high; for instance, the IT product employability in Delhi Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 23
  • 22. in as high as 1 in every 9 candidates and as low as 1 in every 200 in Chennai. Even though Bengaluru has similar IT services employability as compared to other Southern and Western cities, the city shows much higher employability for IT product companies. This indicates that candidates in Bengaluru do much better at computer programming and algorithms, even though they show similar English and cognitive skills. This could be due to better exposure to computer programming either at home, schools or colleges. l The reason for this skew in employability is explained again by the trend in number of colleges in each of these cities (see Table 2). The proliferation of engineering colleges in Southern and Western India has brought down the employability figures. In comparison, there are far fewer engineering colleges both in Delhi and Kolkata. This is despite the fact that the population of Delhi is much more than Southern cities, being comparable to that of Mumbai (see Table 2). Table 2: Number of colleges and population in major cities City Approximate number of engineering colleges Population Bangalore 78 5,438,065 Chennai (including Thiruvallur) 84 4,616,639 Delhi 35 12,565,901 Hyderabad 86 4,068,611 Kolkata 54 5,138,208 145 17,277,214 Mumbai and Pune In summary, the study found that employability trends show significant variation with respect to the location of the campus. Whereas employability percentage was found to be similar in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities (classified by population), the employability in Tier 3 cities fell significantly. The major gap in skills was observed in quantitative ability and logical reasoning skills, rather than command of the English language. With regard to employability percent in different states, it was found that employability decreases logarithmically with the number of colleges in the state (in sync with Arrow's hypothesis). Also, whereas there was no appreciable difference in employability of students coming out of colleges in metros and non-metros, there was a significant difference in employability of candidates born or living in metros, versus the rest. This clearly shows that candidates who have spent a significant part of their life time in metros get better exposure to English and computer education, helping them become more employable. The key learning of this study is that as a Nation, we need to emphasize more on quality than number of colleges. 24 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 23. IV. Employability Variance in Campuses It is known that the quality of intake, education and outcome varies dramatically across the 3,000+ engineering campuses in India. It is pertinent to understand how much variation is there. Is it that most colleges have similar quality, with a few outliers, or whether there is a large variance? What are the reasons for these variations? This section looks into such questions. (a) Employability in top-tier Campuses vs. the Rest. The study analyzed employability of campuses according to their ranking (as reported in popular media). Campuses which fell among the top 100 on the list (according to various credible public surveys) were segregated and their employability was compared with the rest of the campuses. The results are depicted in Fig. 15. The following trends were observed. (i) The employability for IT product companies falls by four times from 8.44% to 2.17%, where as the employability in IT services and KPO falls by almost twice (30.95% to 16.32%) and two-and-a-half times (21.69% to 8.22%), respectively. The fall is not so steep when it comes to BPO and Hardware Networking. Sector Top 100 Colleges Rest of the Colleges IT Services 30.95% 16.32% IT Product 8.44% 2.16% KPO 21.69% 8.22% Hardware Networking 45.05% 35.88% BPO 47.29% Graph 40.18% Fig. 15. Employability: Top 100 Colleges vs. Rest (ii) Given that the ratio of the number of top 100 campuses to the rest is more than 10, one can conservatively estimate that more than 70% of the employable engineers for IT product sector, and more than 80% for IT services and KPO, are in the so-called Tier 2 campuses. According to current trends, IT product and KPO companies do not source from Tier2 campuses, which creates a large artificial dip in the supply of eligible candidates. This is in line with what was reported in the2009 annual employability report by Aspiring Minds.6 National Employability Report (Aspiring Minds), 2009 6 Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 25
  • 24. The study also investigated what skills are lacking in students of Tier 2 campuses (see Figure 16). There is a gap of 22, 16 and 22 percentile points in English Communication, Logical Ability and Computer Programming, respectively, whereas the gap in Quantitative ability is 27 percentile points (see Fig. 16). This clearly shows that the maximum effort is required to hone mathematical skills of the students, whereas consistent effort is needed in other areas as well. Fig. 16. Skill Gap: Top 100 vs. Other Campuses (b) Employability in Govt. and Private Colleges The research also analyzed the difference in employability between government and private colleges (see Fig. 17). Interestingly, an appreciable difference in employability was observed, with students at government colleges doing much better than those in private colleges. The decrease in employability was around 35.1% for IT services and 58.06% for IT product companies. Sector Govt. Pvt. % Decrease IT Services 25.67% 16.66% 35.09% IT Product 5.64% 2.36% 58.06% KPO 16.23% 8.59% 47.07% Hardware Networking 42.61% 36.02% 15.46% BPO 45.38% 40.30% Graph 11.19% Fig. 17. Employability: Govt. vs. Private Colleges 26 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 25. Fig. 18 depicts the difference in skills of students from government and engineering colleges. It was observed that there is significant difference in skills in all areas, with the maximum gap being in quantitative ability. This clearly indicates that government colleges attract better students and probably impart better education as well. This is in contrast to the trends worldwide, where some of the best institutions (such as MIT and Stanford) are private. Average Scores Govt. Pvt. Colleges Colleges Difference English 504 471 33 Quantitative Ability 541 487 54 Logical Ability 485 453 32 Computer Programming 443 403 Graph 40 Fig. 18. Average Scores: Govt. vs. Private Colleges (c) Employability Variance across Colleges In this section, we study the distributional properties of employability across colleges. The employability of each college for the IT services industry was determined and arranged in order of its rank (see Fig. 19). Fig. 19. Employability Percentage of Students across Colleges for IT Services Companies Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 27
  • 26. The following observations can be made: l l The best of colleges have employability as high as 50%, whereas the bottom 30 percentile colleges have employability of less than 10%. Around only 35% colleges have employability more than the average figure of 17%, whereas the majority (65% colleges) has it close to or lower than 17%. This clearly shows that there are a small number of colleges with very high employability followed by a high number of colleges with very low employability. Thus, even though the mean employability is ~17%, the median employability is much lower. Some simple calculations show that average employability in colleges in the top 30 percentile (around 750 colleges) is 28%, whereas it is around 12% for the rest of the colleges. This implies that almost an equal number of employable candidates are there in the top 750 campuses as compared to the rest (see Table 3. Values for IT product companies are also given). Consider that no IT company in India has a campus recruitment program beyond the top 750 campuses, which shows that almost half of the employable pool, i.e., around 50,000 employable candidates in the country, is invisible to recruiters. Table 3. Top 30 percentile campuses vs. the rest Top 30 percentile campuses Rest of the campuses IT Services Employability 28% 12% Percent Employable Pool 50% 50% 5.81% 0.97% 72% 28% IT Product Employability Percent Employable Pool The following conclusions are drawn: l One may observe that the employability falls drastically toward the beginning, and more gracefully toward the middle. This clearly shows that there are certain colleges which have excellent employability; however, other colleges even close in ranking show a drastic drop in employability. This is in line with the perception that certain colleges, such as the IITs and state-run colleges, are much better than other colleges, which may ranked just as highly. This is not a healthy trend, implying that deserving students in these other colleges find themselves cut off from better opportunities. To further analyze this hypothesis, the study looked at the employability for the IT product sector. One would expect to see a steeper trend, since IT product employability is more strongly influenced by college education quality (rather than just intake) as compared to employability for IT services companies. The variation is shown in Fig. 20. 28 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 27. Fig. 20. Employability Percentage of Students across Colleges for IT Product Companies One can observe that IT product employability falls to about 8% at Rank 10, down from 27% at Rank 1, which is a fall of three times. On the other hand, for IT services companies, this fall was only around 1.5 times. Similar trends continue throughout the graph and confirm the hypothesis that the quality of education falls steeply as one goes down the list of the so-called top colleges, with close neighbors having substantial differences in quality. Some other observations for IT product employability are as follows: l The best of colleges have employability as high as 27%, whereas the bottom 45 percentile colleges languish at less than 1%.This figure degrades to zero employable candidates for the bottom 20 percentile colleges. Around only 30% colleges have employability more than the average figure of 2.7%, whereas the majority (70%) colleges have it close to or lower than the average figure. In summary, the study found that the ratio of employability in top 100 colleges versus the rest is between two to four times depending on the sector. Inspite of this, more than 70% of employable candidates for any sector are in campuses other than the top 100. Government-run colleges show much higher employability than private colleges, with skill differences in all areas, including English, cognitive skills and domain skills. With regard to employability distribution among campuses, the quality of education falls steeply among the top-ranked colleges, which implies that colleges that are neighbors in rank have very different quality of education. There are a large number of colleges with exceptionally low employability: bottom 45 percentile campuses have less than 1 in 100 candidates employable in an IT product company, and the bottom 20 percentile campuses have no candidate employable in the IT product sector. Finally, we find that 50% of employable candidates for IT services companies and 28% of employable candidates for IT product companies are enrolled in campuses ranked beyond the top 750, thus forming an invisible pool to most employers in India. Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 29
  • 28. A. States Included in each Region Appendix The report provides various comparisons across regions. For these comparisons, the country was divided into four major regions: North, East, West and South. The constitution of each of these regions is given below: Table 4. Categorization of states across different regions North East West Delhi Assam Gujarat Andhra Pradesh Haryana Chhattisgarh Maharashtra Karnataka Himachal Meghalaya Rajasthan Kerala Jammu & Orissa Goa Tamil Nadu Jharkhand Tripura Madhya Pradesh West Bengal Pradesh Kashmir South Punjab Uttar Pradesh Uttarakhand 30 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
  • 29. B. Employability by State Employability variation of the state of campus residence has been explored in detail for IT services and IT product companies in Chapter VI. Here, the trends for the Knowledge Process Outsourcing Sector, Business Process Outsourcing Sector and Hardware and Networking companies are reported. They follow similar trends as discussed in the chapter, and are presented here for completeness. Fig. 21. Employability in KPO Companies across States and Union Territories Fig. 22. Employability in Hardware Networking Companies across States and Union Territories Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011 l 31
  • 30. Fig. 23. Employability in BPO Companies across States and Union Territories 32 l Aspiring Minds’ National Employability Report – Engineering Graduates, 2011
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