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Automation Giving Birth to Moonlighting Careers with Special Reference to IT Industry

Journal of Strategic Human Resource Management

Volume 8 Issue 3

Published: 2019
Author(s) Name: Geeta Sachdeva, Seema | Author(s) Affiliation: Assist. Prof., Dept. of Humanities & Social Sciences, National Inst. of Tech., Kurukshetra, Haryana
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Abstract

Aims: 21st century is the century of knowledge and only those individuals or organizations which harness this knowledge would only be successful in their endeavours. New and unique technologies are coming everyday and trying to capture as much market-share as possible rendering the existing one’s as obsolete. This gives rise to an important question of the time that what would be the future of those individuals who are working in this information technology industry and trying hard to remain competitive with various kinds of up-gradations in their existing intellectual knowledge base. Relevance: While analysing the recent lay-offs in the IT industry in the financial year 2015-16 and 2016-17 by big players like Cognizant, Cisco, Capgemini SA, it can be inferred that jobs are being automated very rapidly and IT industry may soon cut down its human workforce to bare minimum requirements. This makes the IT workforce look for various alternatives for their survival and future security. This has been investigated many times by various analysts that jobs are being eradicated quickly in the IT industry but only a few have critically examined the new opportunities that can be or are being created due to these dynamics of industry. Research Methodology: A qualitative multi-reports meta-data analysis has been used in this paper for data synchronization to gain fruitful insights into this issue. Collection of data has been done from real time case studies available in the literature and other online resources. Findings: It has been found that although the speed of workforce cut-down with big players in the market has been exponential but parallely there has been a creation of new kind of jobs for whom special kind of knowledge, skills and competencies are required. Individuals working in this industry are looking for various coping strategies to remain abreast with the dynamics of rightsizing of the organizations. They prefer either of the alternatives from Skill Diversification, Skill Enrichment, Planning and working towards new ventures, Going to Academia parallely for knowledge enhancement etc. Conclusion: This has been found out that all this can only be possible if an individual is excellent at multi-tasking. This is giving rise to a new phenomenon of multi-jobbing which is also referred to as moonlighting in the context of emerging human resource development. Organisations are also trying to keep track of the moonlighting practices of their key knowledge workers for ensuring their retention because key knowledge workers are the primary assets of the firm which decide its growth and prosperity even when there are unpredictable dynamics in the industry. Recommendations: The following recommendations can be made on the basis of the findings; The potential of doing multitasking/ moonlighting needs to be measured at the time of recruitment itself in order to minimise the lay-offs. 1. Right fitment of individuals is necessary for optimum utilization of work-potential. 2. Organizations need to plan in advance the transition of jobs and the job incumbents as per the changing requirements of the market. 3. Re-skilling needs to be considered when examining new profiles in the organization and exploring causes of moonlighting or freelancing employees.

Keywords: Automation, Moonlighting, Knowledge Workers, Knowledge Economy, IT/ITes Professionals, Skills in Demand and New Opportunities in IT Industry

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