Indian Women: New IT Revolution and a Nation of Freelancers

How can Indian Women make India a country of Freelance Sevice Providers in the New-age IT Revolution? Read the Article.
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Indian Women and New Age Jobs
Indian Women and New Age Jobs

Indian women, our silent but greatest assets,( and I am not saying properties, so, woke people please hold your horses) but, before talking about that let’s start with a question?

Have you heard about the Great Resignation?

For those who have not, it’s basically a post-pandemic phenomenon where people are leaving their old but more demanding jobs for new but more comfortable jobs. In western countries, this shift has led to a situation, where there are many vacancies for which no one is applying.

Now, I know what you are thinking, yes, rich countries and rich people choosing comfort over money. What’s new about that? 

You may also think that in a job-hungry country like India such situations are only, but a dream.

Now, here you are wrong. Because a kind of Great Resignation also happened in India. But, keeping up with our culture, it was like all other things, highly skewed towards working women.

Millions, either left or lost their jobs during the pandemic due to various reasons, reasons about which we are going to talk about a little, and finally a silver lining in all this.

Indian Women and the Unemployment Dilemma

Even before the pandemic, the share of working-age women in the labor force was 21.17% during 2019, according to World Bank data. To our surprise, this was 31.95% of total working-age women, back in 2005. So, as we became more and more economically well off, the first thing Indians did was to lock their women up in their secure homes. 

To compare it with our neighbor Bangladesh, which recently surpassed us in per capita income (PCI) despite having a more population density, India, which was better in 2005, became more and more left behind as Bangladesh increased its working-age women participation from 28.87% in 2005 to 36.30% in 2019. 

This gloomy picture of the Indian labor force became even more problematic during the pandemic with a dip to 18% according to the same World Bank data. 

We all know the reasons for this precarious situation. To mention a few of these are, the burden of family responsibilities and child-caring majorly falls on women. Along with that the stigma associated with working women is also a major factor. But, we can learn more about these reasons from the videos of The Swaddle instead of Talking here, so I am gonna skip it and going to focus on my topic.

New IT revolution

Now you may be wondering, why did I put the IT Revolution and Freelancing in the title and then start ranting about women’s unemployment? 

Well, it’s all connected, let me explain it with a personal experience. 

Recently, I attended an online content writing certification program. The teacher, a woman, started the course with the introduction of all the coursemates. And this was really surprising for me when I found out that I am the only male in this class. To make it even more surprising, all the women, except one, were married and highly educated. All of them had the more or less same reasons for doing the course, which revolved around job loss, pandemic, family responsibilities and the idea of working from home for some extra income. So, this is my whole idea.

According to AISHE (All India Survey on Higher Education) data by the Ministry of Education, of the total enrollment for higher education, 49% are women (in 2019). In subjects like Arts and Science, women outnumber men. But at the same time, according to UNDP data from 2015, 67% of graduate women in rural areas and 68% in urban areas are unemployed.

Now consider the potential we have, which we are not using right now.

Today, we are seeing a new boom in the IT sector. India, which during the 90s, used to be in the first class of the train of Information and Technology Boom, seems to have deboarded somewhere along the journey. But today, we have been given this chance to board the train once again.

 Search on Google or Facebook, you will realize the enormity of demands for labor in new IT sector fields like Content Creation, Digital MarketingDigital Writing including Academic writing and Copywriting, etc. All these jobs can be done from the comfort of home, on a very flexible schedule, and pay a good amount of money, considering our average income in the country.

Making India a Nation of Freelancers

Once again going to Bangladesh, our neighbor realized this silent but great asset’s potential a few years. Hence, they started training their female workforce for the textile industry. Today, Bangladesh is a major textile exporter and a major competitor to Indian textile exports. So, it’s no wonder that they surpassed us in terms of per capita income(PCI).

But going back to our main debate, what if we divert these graduated but unemployed women workers, whose numbers go in Millions, towards new-age jobs. What kind of market disruption it will cause? 

With the lower living cost and cheaper labor rates, there is no way any other country can compete with our English educated, ready for work female labor force.

Today we import all technical goods from China (the factory of the world). Trying to save the domestic market by not joining trade deals such as Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership(RCEP). But, how long it can go. The other way around is of course taking the very basic lesson from capitalism and focusing on areas in which we hold a competitive advantage, as the service sector.

Therefore, the right step in the right direction at right time can help India in becoming a superpower. Given the last 75 years time, men could not do that, but, maybe it’s women’s turn now.

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