EDUCATION-EMPLOYMENT link : And the quality of education has become a major stumbling block.

*RECENTLY, a friend needed to hire an administrative and finance officer for entry-level position in office administration He advertised the post on one of the relevant Internet sites.

He received 500 applications for the post. After sifting through the CVs, he could only find seven that seemed to be good enough . He called the 7 people people for interviews.

Two candidates did not show up, later, they said they had forgotten they had an interview.

From the 5 people that he did interview, although he took the best, he felt he had to compromise on expectations significantly to give the person a chance.

All the candidates in his short list had postgraduate degrees and some even had a few years of experience. Still, it was difficult to find the right person for the entry-level  job.

There is something very broken in the education-employment in our economy {Developing World economy].  Though usually it is just termed, in popular literature, a skill mismatch, it is clearly more than just that.

Most of the time we hear complaints that universities are just churning out humanities and social science graduates and where we need scientists, engineers, technicians and skilled people.

There might well be a mismatch the skills we require in our industries and what the universities are able to produce, but the above example is not about that.

We advertised for a similar entry-level administrative job a few years ago. We received 1,100  applications for the position.

After sifting through all the CVs, we would only shortlist 10 candidates for interviews. Of the 10, there were only three who came even close to what we wanted and were expecting.

Three out of 1,100! Not a  story of mismatch alone.

The story is not very different on other counts. Pass rates for civil services examinations have dropped to two-or-three percent for each examination.

Tens of thousands of candidates take the exams, the Public Service Commission announces there are hardly a couple of hundreds that it can pass.

What skills are being matched there?
It seems that the major issue, in the cases given here, is that of quality of education.

The Honor and serving of the latest Operational Research on Education in the Developing World  continues to Part 3.

!WOW! thanks the author, Professor Faisal Bari s senior research fellow at the  Institute of Development and Economic Alternatives and an associate professor of economics at LUMS/Lahore, Pakistan.


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