The Confederation of Indian Industry's (CII) Employability Bridge drive is expected to help close to 100 companies in the South to identify potential candidates for fresh recruitment from over 30 colleges, predominantly in Tamil Nadu.

Employability Bridge is an initiative, soft launched early this year by CII, to train students from the college level “to develop the employability quotient in them” in order to bridge the gap between industry and academia. The initiative leverages technology to train students both online and offline and to reach out to as many stakeholders as possible. “The idea is to extend the reach of CII member companies to the talent pool available in the tier II and tier III colleges in particular,” says Mr N.K. Ranganath, Chairman, CII Tamil Nadu State Council and Managing Director of Grundfos Pumps India Pvt Ltd. In the process, students in those regions will also get to know more about career opportunities available for them across industries, he added.

“As of now we have about 2,000 students enrolled from six colleges in tier II and tier III cities in Tamil Nadu.” The target is to have onboard at least 10,000 students from 30 colleges in the Southern region for the first batch.

CII has already done a pilot in which 100 students were trained and got picked up by Mahindra Satyam.

Talking about the revenue streams for this venture, Mr Ambalavanan Ramachandran, Director of Surgeforth Technologies, who is the programme management partner for Employability Bridge, said each student will have to pay a minimum of Rs 1,500 and up to Rs 7,000 depending on the platform one wants to be trained in. The colleges are also required to pay Rs 45,000 a year to get registered with. Finally, the recruiting company too will pay a fee on the basis of the number of students it recruits.

“As this is not a commercial venture, the money thus earned will be ploughed back into the system so that more students, colleges and companies will be benefited by the initiative,” said Mr Ranganath.