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Engineering a career

Counselling session: As the demand for IT engineers comes down, graduates stand to gain from a wider variety of non-core, non-IT options. Photo: K. V. Srinivasan  

The IT industry will see 20 per cent less recruitment this year, according to NASSCOM, thanks to the automation drive of industry giants such as TCS, Infosys, Wipro, HCL and Cognizant. Going forward, the demand for IT professionals will reduce; put straight, campus placements by IT companies will drop significantly.

On the other hand, the supply of IT professionals from engineering campuses is still constant. There are no measures being taken to scale down the supply of IT graduates being churned out of engineering campuses. According to an AISHE report, 2013-14, every year, over 1.5 lakh IT engineers pass out of colleges from across the country.

To worsen the situation, attracted by the glamour and benefits associated with the IT industry, engineers from other branches also compete for IT jobs. In fact, more than 7.8 lakh engineers (all branches together) pass out every year, and for most of them, an IT job is the first preference.

Till now, the IT industry has absorbed non-IT engineers with open arms. However, this will be a challenge in the future.

In this situation, the typical mindset of an engineer is to aim for a core engineering job. But again, such jobs are always limited because they are linked to the industry and functional area. So, what are the other avenues for engineers?

Obviously, they are the non-IT non-core engineering jobs.

Engineers are equipped with good logical, analytical and data management skills. Most colleges include management subjects in the engineering curriculum.

So, instead of making desperate attempts to land an IT or a core engineering job, engineering graduates should also explore areas where they can make a career with the skills they have.

At this stage, it is critical to consider only those options that are aligned with their personality as it will help them carve a niche for themselves.

Where are the jobs?

To understand the kind of jobs and industries suitable for graduates, I did an extensive research and drew up a list of 101 jobs. Thirty nine of these come under functional domains that are common across industries — three are IT related and 36, non-IT.

Sixty two jobs are specific to one of the 15 sectors I considered. Eleven of them are from IT and ITeS sectors. Nine of the jobs are in core engineering sectors. The remaining 42 are non-IT and non-core engineering related.

Engineering graduates can confidently explore many of these non-IT and non-core engineering jobs.

In fact, many engineers pursue their MBA and take up these jobs. So, it is not unusual for them to pursue non-technical jobs.

Functional domains

Marketing/ sales: Engineers can take up roles like market research analyst, brand executive, media executive and digital marketing specialist. In sales, engineers can do well in B2B sales, direct sales and pre-sales.

Operations: Engineers can work as production supervisor, project engineer, quality control supervisor and customer service engineer.

Finance and accounting: In this domain, engineers can don roles like MIS executive.

Human resource: Engineers can take up jobs like E-recruiter, head-hunter, international tele-recruiter, recruitment data analyst, corporate trainer, training coordinator, operations executive and industrial relations executive.

Supply chain: Supply chain officer and purchase officer are two promising options in this field.

Industries

Banking: CASA executive, recovery officer, probationary officer, branch customer relationship executive and branch operations clerk are some opportunities.

Insurance: Development officer, underwriting executive and claims officer are some areas that can be considered.

Education: In this sector, engineers can work as student mobiliser or skill trainers.

Logistics: Courier executive, transport logistics executive and warehousing executive are some roles suitable for engineers.

Media and entertainment: Engineering graduates can opt for roles such as content editor, radio jockey. Retail sector: Billing service executive and customer service associate are some options.

Thus, out of the 78 non-IT and non-core engineering jobs, at least 44 jobs are good options that engineering graduates can explore.

The writer is the author of 101 Entry Level Jobs

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Printable version | Nov 17, 2020 5:03:27 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/education/Engineering-a-career/article14580455.ece

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