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Job challenges in post-Covid economy

Your employability is not static but a dynamic and continuous process, former top cop tells students

Debraj Mitra | Published 18.08.22, 07:05 AM
Delegates at the Education Conclave 2022 in New Town on Wednesday

Delegates at the Education Conclave 2022 in New Town on Wednesday

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Employability is not limited to the first pay package, a former top cop told a bunch of students on Wednesday.

“Your employability is not defined by your first pay package or your first job offer. It is not static but a dynamic and continuous process,” said Surajit Kar Purkayastha, former police commissioner of Kolkata and the state’s former director general of police. 

He was one of the guests at the Education Conclave 2022, organised by the Indian Institute of Hotel Management, held in New Town. Sambudhha Chakrabarti, chairman of West Bengal Taxation Tribunal and former Calcutta High Court judge, was another guest.

It was not abnormal to be anxious about a carrier in the post-Covid world, he said.

“It is not abnormal to feel anxious about your future. Especially when the hospitality sector is among the worst hit by the pandemic. But a turnaround is happening. There was a curb on the movement of people. But since his hunting and gathering days, man has always moved around,” he said.

Hoteliers, back to recruiting people, are now facing a quality crunch, representatives of the  industry told The Telegraph on the sidelines of the conference. 

“We let go of our temporary staff (during the pandemic). In a new hotel we had opened, there were many people who were on yearly contracts. We thought once business picked up, they would join again. But that was not the case. They are working with e-commerce companies. They have to work five days a week and earn more. So, that gap is there,” said a human resource manager of a leading Indian hotel chain, with two properties in Kolkata. 

“There is a crunch. In fact, our traditional sources have dried up. Like management colleges. People are going to Qatar, where the FIFA World Cup is happening. They are going on one-year and two-year contracts. Abroad, in Europe, Dubai, the US, UK, sourcing is happening from India. People are going in droves. There is a quality crunch,” he said. 

But finding the right person to hire was a challenge, he said.  “In the colleges, most have gone for online classes. There is an issue with discipline. In normal times, in a two-year course, almost one year is practical training. That has not happened. They don’t have the patience, or resilience to withstand tough situations. We look for attitude, we recruit and train them,” he said.

Another participant at the conclave told this newspaper that he used to work in the hotel industry but lost his job during the pandemic. For the past year, he has been working in the learning and development team of a hospital chain.

“The healthcare sector gained a lot of traction during the pandemic but profitability was hit. Many people losttheir jobs. We are also back to recruiting people now,” said the man. 

Debojyoti Joseph Gomes, the principal of the institute that organised the conclave, said: “Hospitality industry was the worst sufferer during Covid. But the pace of the comeback has also been rapid. Small and big players are back to campuses for recruitments”.

Last updated on 18.08.22, 11:52 AM
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