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  • Writer's picturevijayadurga k

How do we make careers in the AEC more attractive?

A few days ago, I had a conversation with one of my industry colleagues. He is under severe stress and introspecting on his career choice. “I curse myself for choosing mechanical engineering “, he said. Another of my colleague who is a civil engineer says that his younger brother who is into IT earns 3 times more than him and that puts an immense pressure on him at home.

The #aecindustry, which had a good supply and demand of #manpower , today is faced with an acute shortage of skilled workers. The current situation of India’s construction industry regarding recruitment and retention of the workforce is that. it is struggling to keep pace with the increasing demands of the country’s rapidly growing #infrastructure development sector.

If you ask the question, what is the reason? Well, in my experience as the person who is constantly on a look out for bright minds in the field, I would say they are many.

To begin with, the engineering students that are passing out nowadays, no matter what they study, are more attracted to the IT industry. The mindset of graduating youth is such that the IT industry has better salaries and work culture. Whereas, for all the good hard work, AEC industry doesn’t even pay half of what IT industry pay. Even the ones who end up joining the construction industry lack the motivation to work and don’t want to pursue it as a profession.

Because of the informal and unorganised nature of the construction industry in India, there is no regularization and no strong basis for fixing the compensation for various jobs and roles. An unskilled daily wager earnings per month are 2 times more than that of civil engineer fresher.

Students are not choosing their engineering career on a free will. Hardly there is any passion towards the AEC industry in majority of the students’ beings enrolled in these courses. The quality people who are supposed to be in the industry are leaving and the void is being filled by unskilled people who are not finding any other jobs.

If the above trend continues, then down the lane in another 10 or 20 years, we will not be left with enough subject matter experts, with experience, in the industry. Lack of good and experience industry professionals is a too serious issue to be ignored.

The Indian construction industry employs around 51 million people, is the second-largest employer, and contributes around 9% to the country's GDP. Additionally, it creates more than 45 million jobs either directly or indirectly. By #2022 , the Indian construction space is predicted to become the largest employer and is set to employ ~76 million people.

Food for thought: What do you think can be done to encourage more and more youth to join the construction industry?

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