The year 2020 will be etched in our collective memories as a very turbulent and tumultuous year. The Covid 19 pandemic has caused manifold damage worldwide and has forced us to reassess several aspects of our life. The word normal as we knew it has been redefined. The world economy has taken a severe beating and practically every sector is bearing the brunt. Several countries are struggling to take compensatory measures that will drive the economy upwards.
In a situation like this, it is easy to fall prey to a feeling of dread and gloom about the future. India has a largely young population and the youth is feeling fearful and unsure about their job prospects. It would do them good to remember that after every crisis that the world has been through, it has emerged better and stronger than before and given rise to new growth opportunities. Budding professionals can use this slow down to their advantage by evaluating and assessing which sectors are likely to recover faster than others and what kind of qualifications will be needed to secure good jobs in those sectors.
Technology and real estate poised for a faster recovery
The trends show that technology and the real estate and infrastructure sector (also called the built environment sector) are likely to make a faster economic recovery. In all the upheaval caused by the pandemic, technology has stood the test of time and proved to be the salvation for organisations and educational institutes to maintain continuity in work. It is also likely to be the foundation on which the economic recovery will be based. If it wasn’t for technology, life during the successive lockdowns would have been insupportable. The pandemic has also brought to the forefront, the importance of owning one’s own home and also emphasised the need for investment and improve in the infrastructure. This is likely to bring a faster recovery to this industry as compared to most other sectors.
Job roles in built environment in a post Covid environment
The built environment sector has faced its share of disruptions and challenges due to the pandemic. Going forward, this sector will also see an increased use of technology to minimise the effects of disruptions and to optimise its profitability. The next 6 to 12 months are likely to be stormy with some ups and downs but this sector has always faced a shortage of skilled professionals and this demand is only expected to increase in the future.
Employability in a post Covid-19 world
The real estate and infrastructure sector will witness an evolution and technology is likely to play a large part in its recovery plan. Skilled professionals were already in demand but now specialisation will be the key to employability. Young professionals who have a specific management degree which enhances role specific skills will be more in demand. Going by the current situation, some of the job roles that are likely to see an increased demand in the real estate sector are:Financial Feasibility
The pandemic has strained the financial feasibility of many ongoing projects. There will be a need for professionals to assess how credit, loans, cash flow reserves etc can impact the profitability of new and current projects. Postgraduates from all real estate streams like Construction Economics and Quantity Surveying (CEQS), Construction Project Management (CPM) and Real Estate and Urban Infrastructure (REUI) are proficient in assessing client requirements and undertaking feasibility studies.
The pandemic has caused delays in project delivery and job roles in this field may see an increased demand as resumption of work after a long hiatus is like to give rise to disputes in contracts and new contracts will need to be framed. Those who have an MBA degree in CEQS have the skills and capability of reviewing construction contracts and establishing effective contract management procedures to reduce the likelihood of disputes arising.
Covid 19 caused a severe disruption in the supply chain in the construction industry. Construction came to a complete standstill due to a shortage of vital components and material. In future, organisations will seek to strengthen any weak links in the supply chain system. Postgraduates in CEQS or CPM have the relevant skills needed to collaborate with site managers, surveyors, engineers, site worker and other professionals to ensure that all supplies and procedures are carried out safely.
Work has already started in the industry and as it picks up pace, it is anticipated that organisations will resort to more automation to mitigate their losses and increase profitability. Digitisation, cloud based products and services, collaboration between all stakeholders on a strong network infrastructure are some technical advances that the industry may implement. Candidates who have a sound technical knowledge of Business Information Modelling (BIM) and related software (like AutoCad, Revit etc) will certainly have an edge over others and be more in demand by organisations.
Every crisis is an opportunity that can lead to a better future. The economy may take anywhere between 18 to 24 months to recover and this pause could be well utilised by students and young professionals to evaluate their options and enrol in sector specific MBA programs as niche skills will be the clear differentiator in giving you a sharp edge over the others to benefit from the emerging opportunities.
About RICS School of Built Environment:
RICS School of Built Environment, Amity University is an industry led academic institution which delivers specialized undergraduate and postgraduate programs to students ambitious to work in real estate, construction and infrastructure sector. It also aids as a hub for research and development of technical proficiency in built environment.