The total employment opportunities generated by the M&E industry is close to four million jobs, according to the report released by The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)-The Boston Consulting Group (BCG). The total employment includes direct, indirect and induced jobs. The industry promises to continue a strong growth of 11-12 percent in the next five years, and is poised to add 7-8 lakh new jobs in the country. 

Over the next five years, the industry is looking to add over Rs 350,000crores of additional revenues (Direct, indirect and induced) to the Indian economy.

The sixth edition of The Big Picture Summit by CII is taking place in New Delhi on the theme Media & Entertainment: The Nucleus of India’s Creative Economy with BCG as the knowledge partner. The report encapsulating the strong growth of the Media and Entertainment Industry and the need to address large talent gaps was released at this summit.

Speaking to the audience in his keynote address, Sudhanshu Vats, Group CEO, Viacom18, Said, “You see India has a workforce of 460 million. As per several estimates, the working age population grows by 15-16 million every year. While we have this massive workforce that’s growing, we also have to remain competitive as globalization and trade grow. There is also a large trend of automation of jobs wherein machines are being used to perform ‘routine’ jobs or tasks that are repetitive; plus, they can do these in a cheaper and better way.”

The Indian media and entertainment industry has grown strongly by 10 percent from 2011 to 2017, and has significant potential of higher growth strides. Currently, direct economic impact by the M&E industry is Rs 135K crores, while the total of indirect and induced benefits to the economy is Rs 450,000Crores, contributing to 2.8 percent to India’s GDP.

Speaking more on the sector and the job opportunities that it holds, Vats added, “Our sector directly employees anywhere between 1.1-1.2 million Indians. In the next five years, we will add approximately one million jobs, basis conservative estimates, thereby playing our role in assuring the challenge. If we achieve breakout growth, that number can also touch five million. However, I would like to draw your attention not to the number of jobs but to their quality.”

To explain the variation between quantity of jobs and quality, he further said, “The skills required to thrive in our sector are the bedrock of most ‘non-routine’ jobs. Creativity, story-telling, emotional intelligence and cognitive ability – all skills that M&E professionals can be proud of are the ones that are automation proof. These are also the skills that can be transferred to other sectors – making us a part of the solution. Of course, we too will face our share of the burden. Some roles will be automated – and the media organization might look very different in 2027 – but our core will still be automation-proof.”

The direct jobs include output generated within the core media and entertainment industry ecosystem. The direct employment generated currently is 1.2-1.5 million. Indirect or flow on impact are the revenue generated in the economy that are caused by subsequent suppliers’ production because of related economic activity. The main drivers of indirect impact are communication, electronic equipment and electricity, contributing 20-30 percent. Induced impact is generated by the income and employment generated in the economy across sectors benefiting from this increased consumption spend.

The industry needs to embrace itself for the consumption explosion and the key consumption drivers for long-term growth are driven by:

• Rise in growing rural demand and media consumption

• Capturing more time of digitally connected consumers

• Strategically supplying to segmented audiences.

With the rising consumer demands, changing business models and digital disruptions, the industry needs to prepare itself for a completely different and perhaps, unrecognizable workforce by 2022. The M&E industry alone will require 1.4-1.6 lakh trained/employable individuals entering the workforce every year for the next five years.  The demand for talent and functional skills in the industry will outstrip supply given the pace of growth in the industry. Hence, M&E industry needs to prepare itself for a completely different and perhaps, unrecognizable workforce by 2020. To accelerate growth, M&E organizations must rebuild their strategies to fit in the shifting, digitally-oriented landscape.

With the changing business environment, the demand for talent and functional skills in the industry will outstrip supply given the pace of growth in the industry. Under this purview, according to KanchanSamtani, Partner and Director, BCG, “It’s the need of the hour, for the industry to identify the creative, technological and analytical skills that will be required over the next 5-7 years to restructure its business model for the up skilling exercise. The talent agenda is the key aspect for the expansion of the sector. To achieve this, there is the need for concentrated efforts required by the government, academia and the industry bodies”.

There is significant potential for growth, with industry creating additional jobs in the next five years. However, industry participants with the support of the government need to drive to build a strong pipeline of talent and ensure large scale up skilling of its current workforce. The Indian M&E industry faces a unique set of challenges in the talent agenda which need to be thought-through carefully and surmounted by industry interventions.

Vats ended his keynote address with a promise for the future, saying, “The private sector needs to be more ‘creator-friendly’ or ‘freelancer friendly’. This means having the right kind of tools and technology to spot and empower talented individuals and then compensate them in a transparent manner. This is the only message I’d like to leave you with. In a future where the labor market will undergo several changes – and more changes – our sector might hold the key to creating a future-proof, agile, dynamic workforce that can take its skills and drive impact across industries.” – Best Media Info