According to data from Indeed, the world’s no. 1 job site, there has been an increase of 179% in the number of searches by job seekers for Artificial Intelligence (AI) related jobs in India between June 2016 and June 2018.
The rise of artificial intelligence in India
AI-related jobs have seen an increase as companies are increasingly working towards integrating new technology into their core functions, creating new openings for skilled professionals. According to industry body NASSCOM, a growth rate of 9% for new job roles that require a high level of skills has been predicted in the technology sector. Job searches for these roles too have continued to grow in recent years.
% change in job searches (per million)
June 2016 to June 2017
June 2017 to June 2018
June 2016 to June 2018
Since the start of 2018, employer demand for AI skills has been consistently twice the supply of job seekers. From 1.2 in April 2017, the AI skills gap in India has steadily worsened, hitting a 3-year high of 2.2 in June 2018. That is: employer demand for AI skills outstrips job seeker supply by 2.2 times.This is an indicator of the need for skill development in the larger STEM sector and the technology sector in particular. Research by the National Institute of Skill Development (NISD) indicates that only two percent of the country’s total workforce has undergone skills training presently. The good news is that, more recently, the talent mismatch levels have been on a decline, which is an encouraging sign for both job seekers hoping to work in the sector, and companies seeking skilled talent in the field.
Most searched AI related jobs in the past year (2017-2018)
machine learning engineer
senior software engineer
full stack developer
Even as larger firms are slowing in terms of hiring, emerging start-ups and e-commerce firms are recruiting in comparatively larger numbers. However, companies continue to seek talent with specialised skills in developing and implementing artificial intelligence, given that India is still in the initial stages of the application of this technology, which emphasises the need for job seekers to work towards acquiring the requisite skills.
Sectors leading the AI trend
Apart from the wider technology industry, the automotive sector is a key driver of the application of artificial intelligence in India. Companies are increasingly looking at leveraging AI for data management, analytics and programming. According to a BCG study, India is the third country after USA and China in terms of AI implementation in the automotive sector. This is indicative of the scope of work that is yet to be tapped in the sector going forward.
Commenting on the subject, Mr. Venkata Machavarapu, Head of Engineering, India and Site Director at Indeed India, said, “The integration of technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning into core business is an inevitable step towards participating in the economies of the future. While firms across industries are adopting a technology-forward approach, it is crucial that we also prepare the workforce by reskilling and upskilling talent in the requisite capabilities. Our focus needs to be not only on finding talent with the right skills, but also on equipping existing employees with the required skills to work with AI-powered solutions.”
Bolstered by the government’s efforts towards harnessing artificial intelligence towards national development, such as through the NITI Aayog’s national programme on the research and development of AI and its applications, job creation in the sector is likely to see substantial growth in the months to come, which bodes well for job seekers.