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June 14, 2015

Successive govts fail to create job opportunities: experts

Business

June 14, 2015

LAHORE: Successive governments in the country have failed to create job opportunities during the last two decades, experts said on Saturday.
They said the issue can be resolved through online talent platforms that would ensure right man for the job.
Currently, workers in Pakistan whether qualified, over-qualified or under-qualified are mostly performing their duties without much enthusiasm.
At the same time, the employers are mostly not happy with the general performance of their workers. The general low productivity of the workers justifies employers’ dissatisfaction, they said.
“Minimum wage mantra has also contributed to the inefficiencies of the workers,” said M I Khurram, a knitwear exporter, with over 6,000 employees.
He said there is no rationale in increasing the wages without improvement in the productivity. There are workers in each concern that have been engaged seven years ago when the minimum wage was around Rs4000.
Khurram said after every increase in the minimum wage, these workers would now get Rs13,000 from the next month.
A new worker with no experience of the job will also get the same minimum salary as was announced in the Federal Budget 2015/16.
The employers are not in a position to bear the additional cost of minimum wage and reward the experienced workers with higher salaries, as the minimum wage is constantly increasing at an average of Rs1,200 per annum, he said.
He said an organisation could reward experience by increasing 10 to 15 percent salaries every year, which is now being done through the order of the government.
At the same time, Khurram said, a complete raw hand is also paid the same salary that is being given to an experienced worker.
Adil Butt, another exporter, said: “We do not employ right worker for the job that results in wastage of talent.”
The unemployment in the country is so high that highly qualified persons apply for low grade jobs and are mostly recruited.
He said

after sometime the workers start realising that he is over-qualified for the job or that his services are under-utilised. Such feeling does impact efficiency of the worker, he said, adding that labour markets in Pakistan have not kept pace with the ever-increasing shift in the global economy.
Workers’ inefficiencies have taken their toll on the competitiveness of the Pakistani products, he said, adding that Pakistani industries need will and efficient workers that enjoy their job.
An entrepreneur Usman Malik said that the inability to find talent through normal advertising or HR experts has made the labour markets in Pakistan dysfunctional.
Many organisations are now looking for suitable workers at online talent platforms such as LinkedIn and others that effectively connect individuals with work opportunities.
He said one advantage of online talent platforms is their ability to inject transparency and dynamism into the job markets. Developed economies and even Indians are benefiting from these platforms, he said.
There is a need to change corporate practices, individual mindsets and regulatory frameworks to capture the benefits of online platforms.
He said, “We could make our labour markets work through right investment and innovation by the private sector.”
A few thousands in Pakistan use these online services and they have improved their capabilities, Malik said, adding, “Let us admit that around 40 percent of our population is either unemployed or grossly under employed, which includes educated and skilled persons, as well. By taking benefits of these platforms we can achieve significant benefits for our economy and unemployed.”
In countries around the world, 30 percent to 45 percent of the working-age population is unemployed, inactive in the workforce, or working only on a part time basis.
In Brazil, China, Germany, India, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States, this adds up to 850 million people, he said.
Online talent platforms increase the transparency of the demand for skills, enabling young people to make better educational choices. As a result, more effective spending on tertiary education could reduce some of the $89 billion misallocation one finds in Brazil, China, Germany, India, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States. Capturing this potential will require expanded broadband access, updated labour market regulations, systems for delivering benefits to workers, and clearer data-ownership and privacy rules.
“We calculate that the adoption of these platforms could increase the output of companies by up to nine percent and reduce the cost of recruiting talent and of human resources generally by as much as seven percent.