Smart cities revolution to boost employment in India

Smart cities have emerged as a potential job creator in the past few months. Many new-age profiles are likely to witness potential growth especially in the areas of ICT (Information Communication Technology), Data Management & Analytics and e-Governance.

Government of India’s ‘smart cities mission’, a flagship initiative, is aimed at developing 100 sustainable and citizen friendly cities across the country. Each of these smart cities will be a key driver of economic growth boosting the GDP of the country and creating multiple new-age employment opportunities. With increased urbanization, urban areas are expected to house 40 per cent of India’s population and contribute to over 75 per cent of India’s GDP by 2030. This calls for large scale infrastructural development which is not just physical and institutional but also social and economic infrastructure. Only then would these cities will attract investments leading to continuous growth and development.

A key way of developing smart cities is by enabling using smart evolved technology for local area development in the cities. Such development will generate employment for a large segment of local population. Application of smart solutions will enable cities to use technology, information and data to improve their services. Integration of technology is a major challenge and implementation of technology across smart cities needs a lot of hand holding at the moment. To understand the dynamics of smart cities and to create a strong eco-system it is important that the workforce has advanced skill sets.

Smart cities have emerged as a potential job creator in the past few months. Many new-age profiles are likely to witness potential growth especially in the areas of ICT (Information Communication Technology), Data Management & Analytics and e-Governance. As there is a large pool of data being used in the building and management of smart cities, data monitoring and surveillance will become a crucial aspect. Whether the data is used for intelligence gathering, prevention of crime, public health, investigation or surveys; surveillance will hold a lot of importance for citizens.  

It is important for us to understand that the existing workforce and the new workforce entering the labour market need to align their skill sets basis the requirements of smart cities. Each and every sector and job roles will need enhancement of knowledge, specialized skills training and continuous upskilling. People with varied skill sets will be needed to manage and monitor data across smart cities. Data Skills, Communication skills, Business Intelligence and Analytics, Visualization, Data Modelling, Numerical skills, Quantitative Analysis, Product Development are few key skills that will be required for continuous surveillance at smart cities.

Some of the prominent skills that are essential for smart cities are:

  1. Data Skills – Information gathering is a very essential part for any developmental projects.  Right information at the right time with accuracy is a key factor for development of specialized projects. Based on the precision and reliability of the data, the decision can be made and presented to the clients for approval processes. Validated data can be a  success factor for any project  development.
  2. Business Skills – Planning capability is one of the most important skills required in project management. Planning of finance, resources, manpower are essential elements one needs to possess. Financial Management plays a very important role in project development. The skill to handle a problem and manage crisis during the execution phase, networking with different departments and sectors, negotiation with vendors, overall exhibiting the leadership qualities are the core skills of business.
  3. Product Development – Analysing needs is an important skill in product development. And pricing of the product and validating the quality of the product is a core skill factor. Knowing the market segment, understanding the technicalities of the product and evaluation of quality are the business needs in demand. Strategic thinking and skill prioritization is very important.
  4. Quantitative Skills – Skills that involve the ability to handle data systematically will be the need of the hour. Job seekers must have the ability to design surveys or experiments to assess situations and use the quantitative evidence for problem solving. Another key aspect in the sector is understanding and managing digital media, archives and open data. The ability to change according to the need and be more adaptive is crucial for project development. Flexibility is also an important trait of quantitative skills.
  5. Numerical Skills – Analytics, budgets and financials are the critical skills required for business development. Reviewing and reasoning provides the clarity for better decision making. The logical derivatives of the financial implications are crucial for any decisions in the development of smart cities.
  6. Communication Skills – Strong communication skills are always a boon in the workplace. The selling of your ideas and concepts through effective presentation are important

The Indian economy has shown tremendous growth in areas of surveillance. With lots of new opportunities emerging and the multiple challenges that come along, effective use of technology and data are the only way forward. Identification of skill gaps is a must which should be backed with, planning and developing skill sets through advanced skill training, up-skilling and reskilling.

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