Indian executives currently placed at various levels of management from different sectors are joining educational programs in business schools (B-schools), to upgrade their existing skills and knowledge to stay ahead of others in an exceedingly competitive job market fraught with volatile market conditions. The executive education courses at the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) are one of the most sought-after among such courses.
In spite of the sluggishness in the job market, the education sector has witnessed a 30-40% increase in applications for various executive programs. Managers from different sectors are striving to upgrade their skills to keep pace with the latest concepts of management, in the process becoming an indispensable resource in the companies they work for.
As per officials of IIM-Bangalore, there is an increase in applications for their long-duration programs, which are generally of a duration of 9 to 12 months. This is because the mid and senior level managers aspire to explore new horizons in their current sphere of employment as well as eliminate chances of redundancy. IIM-Bangalore is considering introducing new programs and increasing the batch-size of existing programs, the officials added. IIM-Calcutta officials claimed that the demand for few of their executive programs has gone up by 70% this year, when compared to that of 2012-13.
Usually executive education courses are sponsored by the companies. However, with a slugging economy and steep cost implication, organizations are shying away from sponsoring such courses and even when they do, they opt for part-funding them. Various executives claimed that they are willing to make huge investments in such courses for themselves to keep pace with the times and avoid chances of being laid-off by the company they work for.
Many institutes are introducing new programs and subsidizing them to meet their growing demand.
As per officials of the Indian School of Business (ISB), the institute has witnessed an increase in demand for various functioning programs such as supply chain management, project management, etc. These programs are generally of six months’ duration. ISB officials claimed that they are contemplating introducing few more certificate-based and short-term programs. These programs are popular among executives in the Information Technology (IT), retail and finance sectors, who aspire to change sectors. The institute is looking to subsidize fees for the courses as well, the officials added.
As per industry players, companies are also opting for part-financing such courses for their valued employees which will be mutually beneficial. In such cases, customized programs with multiple batches are preferred by the firms.
Other than Indian B-schools, international institutes have also seen a rise in demand for such courses. As per officials of Saïd Business School-University of Oxford, the number of Indian joiners in their executive programs has seen a sharp increase (almost three-fold) during the period between 2008 till date. Institute officials claimed that their programs are structured to meet the requirements of the Indian market.
The executive education programs are being offered by both Indian institutes as well as international institutes with campuses in India. The IIMs and ISB conduct both short-term and long-term programs almost throughout the year. International institutes such as Saïd Business School and Harvard Business School offer them at specific intervals only, in India as well as in their parent country.
Source: Business Standard
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