Skill and employment-driven construction MSMEs

Skills & Resources of MSMEs

In the current state of affairs, for enhanced technological progress, there is an increasing need to create conditions that benefit MSMEs in construction industry. Enabling them to adapt and thrive in an open environment remains essential for an all-round economic progress.

With India’s aim to achieve $5 trillion economy in the subsequent years, one must understand that its realization is not fraught in uncertainty but is connected to a single-minded dedication to reforms. MSME segment has the potential to emerge as the backbone for this economy and act as an engine for growth, provided it has the right set of support and enabling framework.

India has always seen abundant localized creativity (jugaad) – working around lack of resources by making use of best of what is available and coming up with a quick-fix. Many MSMEs offer new products and services that no doubt, address a multitude of problems, but still, fail to sustain on a big level.

From our last blog, we now know the reality on-ground in the construction industry – how lack of skilled and sustained resources in MSMEs pose a threat to the industrial facilities and act as a hindrance in their growth.

Skills & Resources of MSMEs

The thrust areas for increasing the competitiveness of MSMEs include technology, procurement, skill development and finance. Collective support in all of them can create an effective knowledge and monetary-base for the MSMEs and generate employment that is in-demand.

Improving the investment climate

Better information structure, supported by stronger industry-specific skills and more finance (public, private or both) should promote indigenous grassroots’ endeavours. This simply means since MSME growth is dependent on their access to strategic resources such as knowledge networks, monetary, policy framework conditions, the better and newer approach should be tailored to local conditions.

In India, CSDCI creates a credible and effective mechanism to manage tasks of skill development across the country and helps meet future skill-needs of the construction industry. It can do well to this sector the most – be it a scaffolder, construction fitter, supervisor, through training centers, their skill and talent enhancement is taken care of.

NHAI will play an important part in accommodating workers for the forthcoming projects – as India expands in the construction sector, skilled and talented individuals under NSDC (CSDCI) can then become a part of the bigger picture. The first step needs to be initiated by the government – emphasis on creating job opportunities for the newly skilled intellects has to occur, and policy efforts need to seek the right direction.

Private organizations can contribute by creating Excellence Training Centers; can become the ‘next go-to’ once workers are well-equipped with the basic skills. Exposure to AR/VR can stimulate and retain interest in construction, and also give an extra edge to the interested learners.

Money becomes a necessary resource for sustenance, and to facilitate the development, central and state governments should give preference to policies with respect to procurement of goods and services. ‘Udyami helpline’, is a single point facility that gives information regarding setting up an enterprise, for getting loans from banks, availabilities of subsidies under various ministries etc.

To upgrade bottom-line and management practices of MSMEs, consistent efforts from ILO are visible since long. Their global program SCORE, in partnership with Ministry of MSME (Sustaining Competitive Responsible Enterprises) for MSMEs trains on workplace cooperation, quality productivity, workforce management and OHS. In India, since 2011, more than 100 MSMEs have participated and reported improvements in areas such as material wastage, wait and isle time, energy consumption, reduction in injuries, labour turnover and worker complaints.

All of this –

  • Enables MSMEs to accept new orders with confidence
  • Directs concentration towards core business activities
  • Strengthens the construction ecosystem

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