CSR in Skill Development: Avenues, insights and impact

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We are delighted to present a Skill Talk by Dilip Chenoy, Independent Advisor – Startups, Social Enterprises, CSR and former CEO, NSDC – explaining how corporates can positively impact ‘Skill India’ mission by implementing strategic CSR projects. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is one of the ways to actively contribute in transforming India through job-ready workforce for domestic and international industry.  Let’s read on to know more about how wholehearted support from corporates can help achieve speed, scale and sustainability of various skill development initiatives.

Corporate organizations have a crucial role to play in accomplishing the national agenda for skilling India. Besides meeting their demand for skilled and talented workforce, they also address requirements of the industry and engage with the larger community. The Companies Act 2013 has mandated corporates to spend at least 2% of their profits on CSR. First, let’s look at the big picture of CSR and then discuss the 5 models that can be used for skill development and vocational training in India.

csr-in-skill-development

Section 135 of the Companies Act provides the threshold limit for applicability of the CSR to a Company i.e. (a) net worth of the company to be Rs 500 crore or more; (b) turnover of the company to be Rs 1000 crore or more; (c) net profit of the company to be Rs 5 crore or more. Further as per the CSR Rules, the provisions of CSR are not only applicable to Indian companies, but also applicable to branch and project offices of a foreign company in India.

According to the recent NextGen Report*
Spend of top 91 firms in NSE in 2015-16 Rs. 6033 crores vs Rs 4760 crore by top 100 in 2014-15
26 firms in 2015-16 vs 21 firms in 2014-15 exceed the 2% limit.
Top 5 spenders: Reliance : 651.6 Crore; NTPC : 491.8 Crore; ONGC: 421.0 Crore; TCS: 294.0 Crore, ITC: 247.5 Crore

According to the recent CSR India Report*
Spend of 250 firms in BSE in 2015-16: Rs. 7143 crores vs Rs. 5563 crores in 2014-15
93 firms in 2015-16 vs 78 firms in 2014-15 exceeded the 2% limit.
Top 5 spenders: Reliance : 651.6 Crore; NTPC : 491.8 Crore; ONGC: 421.0 Crore; TCS: 294.0 Crore, ITC: 247.5 Crore

*The spends from non-listed firms is not captured in these reports.

It is interesting that these numbers from NextGen, or CSR India, track the top 100/250 firms in the NSE, or BSE. However, there are several SMEs who don’t report this data even though, they have done a lot of work in the CSR space.  So, if you look at the total CSR spend in the area of skill development it will be far greater than the numbers tracked by NextGen or CSR India. Apart from the quantitative data on CSR we are waiting for reports from Economic Times and Futurescape who will be ranking the best companies in CSR. Many of the Tata Group companies, L&T, Infosys and Mahindra and Mahindra, figured in top 10 in terms of ranking and each one of them supports projects in skill development. Each of the top five spenders Reliance, ONGC, NTPC, TCS and ITC have skill training programmes in their portfolio. Perhaps going forward the percentage of such spending could increase. NTPC has a MoU with NSDC for skill development based on the success of the initial programmes this could scale.

I would like to mention three reasons to capture both the smaller spenders in the top 100 or 250 or the companies doing CSR as well as the small companies spending on skill development.

  • It will act as a foundation or a base for others to follow
  • In terms of the projects and the actual spend in the CSR, it will help in understanding the spread and nature of various activities under the guidelines.
  • Some small industries might be using state of the art or innovative ways of doing things; their best practices will be available for larger firms to follow

CSR in Education and Skill development

Education and skill development are fast emerging as preferred choice for CSR initiatives in India. If you go by recent trends, we find that many corporates have integrated their business goals with CSR and there’s a strategic contribution to capacity building and community development through partnering with training partners, NGOs and other organizations.

csr-projects-in-skill-development5 models of supporting skill development through CSR initiatives

oneOne, set up own foundation or fund training organizations and NGOs that are imparting skilling and employment options for differently abled, underprivileged, socially and economically challenged sections of society:  For example, corporate houses that have set up their own foundations include names such as, Dr. Reddy’s Foundation, Axis Bank Foundation, ICICI Bank Foundation among others. The other option is to fund training organizations, NSDC training partners and NGOs; for example, Godrej Green initiative, Hindustan Unilever and L’Oreal. In the area of manufacturing and agriculture there are several companies, especially those in the fertilizer and other agricultural product space that are doing a lot of skill development including working with grassroots level agricultural organisations.

twoTwo, modernise the ITIs and vocational training institutes with latest tools and technology, software and support services such as training of trainers. Corporates can adopt the existing institutes and help them through knowledge transfer, finances or infrastructure. They can also set up new institutions that provide state-of-the-art facilities for imparting training and hands-on learning. To cite an example, Mercedes Benz sets up an ‘Advanced Auto Body Repair Training Center’ in association with Don Bosco ITI in Pune or the work done by Tata Motors in the Northeastern part of India. In the Automotive sector Maruti, Ashok Leyland and Tata Motors have also adopted a number of ITIs. Software companies like Adobe, Microsoft and IBM offer training software at subsidized prices to both training institutes as well as educational establishments. This support could also be extended to engineering colleges as well.

threeThree, enable livelihoods in rural areas by creating opportunities to work without migration.This is where corporates can provide market access for products and services, facilitate micro finance in order to supplement training and skill development. For example, HSBC and Mann Deshi Foundation support micro finance and have built in training and skill development in their lending programmes. e-Commerce ventures such as Snapdeal and Flipkart provide access to producers as well as artisans for selling their products online. Since the HRD Ministry is expanding the provision of vocational training in government schools across the country, some of the education projects being supported by corporates under their CSR programmes could be expanded to include the vocational education component as well.

 fourFour, contribute towards scaling up skill development initiatives by funding activities across the skill development value chain, capacity building and managerial support. Corporates can also sponsor professional counselling for building awareness and mobilising people for enrolling in skilling courses with the right mindset. Given that there is a huge impact on NGOs as a number of corporates are setting up their own Foundations, or hiring CSR professionals so the existing NGOs are facing a challenge of scaling up and meeting requirements of qualified  human resources etc. Corporates could provide specific funding for capacity development. There are many examples of firms encouraging their employees to provide volunteering services and support to projects run by NGOs to help them scale up and or  to be able to manage the projects effectively.

oneFive, encourage startups, self-help groups and micro enterprises through seed funding, mentoring and incubation support. Besides sharing knowledge and best practices, corporates can sponsor projects that have demonstrated high impact through innovative models and technology-enabled initiatives in skill development and vocational education. They can also support entrepreneurs who are working on initiatives to support work-integrated training through entry level skilling and upskilling. Specific skills intervention for self-help groups could increase their efficiency and outcomes. Innovative ideas that could help scale at the village level could be supported through the incubation phase and also mentor support be provided.

A number of large MNCs are also including India in their global projects or partnering organisations in India in the space of skill development. Some Examples of such CSR projects in skill development are

  • Accenture has a global ‘Skills to Succeed’ program customised for India
  • Boeing has skilling programs in high-end engineering space
  • Cognizant has tied up with NSDC Udaan besides empowering women and PwDs through other projects
  • Uber and NSDC tie up for training drivers and focussing on skills in the logistics sector

While the progress so far has been good, there is a need for synergy and scaling. I would like to reiterate the need for aggregating the disjointed work being done right now. One way could be to look at the various initiatives being done in a particular geography and connecting the dots so that scaling could be done. Further there is a need for a comprehensive strategy to conduct impact studies and monitor the projects and these impact studies should be shared in the public domain. The challenge is to scale and sustain the project; hence the need to share data of suitable models and outcomes that can help channelize additional CSR funds becomes all the more critical!.

25 Comments

  1. sir i request for you i am Mohan Malik secretary of dream world charitable trust in odisha berhampur ganjam pin-761010 sir i interested to this program, so pleas give me this program

  2. parambir singh Rawat on

    sir Deep India Trust is working in the areas of Educational support to disadvantaged rural children and skill development training to rural youth in Uttrakhand. Ww are interested to have association with your esteemed organisation ,so that we can impart quality education to poor rural children and skill training to youth.

    Thanking you

  3. Arun Pratap Singh on

    Respected Sir,
    Our NGO Sri Brahma Gramodhyog Sansthan works in field of Agriculture and allied sectors, technical education for self employment of rural backward and BPL youths, livelihood programmes,senitation and pure water availability ,rural women and girls upliftment, upliftment of socioeconomic status of ST,s in Uttarakhand etc.
    We want to conserve and protect Indigenous cow breeds as well as want to establish an ITI institute in district Kushinagar of UP in India. This district is one of the most backward district of UP.
    We also want to start a project for livelihood and upliftment of socioeconomic condition of ST,s in Jaunsar region of Uttarakhand state of India.
    For the above purpose we want financial support by you.
    Kindly guide us.

  4. Arun Pratap Singh on

    Respected Sir,
    Kindly Associate our NGO Sri Brahma Gramodhyog Sansthan with your renowned organisation for the above mentioned purpose.By which we could be able to provide best quality results.

  5. venu janjirala on

    Sir
    Good Morning
    i had computer training institution in karimnagar telangana
    past 20 years
    we are conducting lot govt programes and retail

  6. mukesh kumar gola on

    Dear sir
    We are training provider under smart NSDC and currently working on skill development programmes.
    we request to you please give a chance to associate with you in csr projects.

  7. Dear sir,
    We are training provider under smart NSDC and currently working on skill development programmes.
    we request to you please give a chance to associate with you in csr projects.
    From – M.D.Sharma- m.d.

  8. Dear sir
    Our NGO are training provider under smart NSDC and currently working on skill development programmes.
    we request to you please associate with you in csr projects in the state of Jammu Kashmir & Ladakh.

    From Chairman
    Educational Technologies Trust(ETT)

  9. Kumaresh Nayak on

    Dear Sir,
    I am interested to take run csr projects in odisha. we request to you please give a chance to associate with you in csr projects.
    from:- Kumaresh Nayak, chairman
    INTEGER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
    (A Division of M/s Shanti o pragati charitable trust ), Kendrapara, odisha
    Contact No.- 9439739666
    9861447008

  10. Dear Sir,
    I am interested to take run csr projects in Dausa (Rajasthan). we request to you please give a chance to associate with you in csr projects.
    from:- VIJAY SHARMA (DIRECTOR)
    PAHAL COMPUTER INSTITUTE
    Gupteshwar Road, Dausa, Rajasthan
    Contact No.- 9667836947

  11. Respected Sir,
    I am interested to take run CSR Project in Gorakhpur (U.P.). we requested to you please give a chance to associate with you in csr projects. we are the TP with NSDC.
    from:- Man Singh (Secretory)
    HELPING HAND WELFARE SOCIETY
    Bansgaon Gorakhpur UP-273403
    Contact No- 9559229981,7398404980

  12. JKD ASSOCIATES on

    Dear Sir,
    I am interested to take run csr projects in odisha. we request to you please give a chance to associate with you in csr projects.
    Our Experience pmkvy2,esdm,pmgdisha,star,suda,osfdc.
    Biswajit Dash (Director)
    Organization name – JKD Associates
    Contact No.- 9853444505/9776444505

    • Sasmita mishra on

      Dear sir,
      I am interested csr proj in odisha. Am experienced osfdc,osm,ddugky progm.
      Org name – swasik computer

  13. SHASHWAT SWAROOP PAL on

    Dear Sir/Madam
    I am interested to run CSR projects in odisha. we are working since last 4 years in rural areas to develop education among the students from all categories of the people. specially we have seen that due to lack of finance & proper education most of the students are unemployed. though they have diploma or degree but they are not capable to grab a career which causes them unemployed. in our working years we have successfully placed many students in different industries and able to make some of them employed.
    Of we will get proper support then we can create a better environment in education and able to reduce unemployment situation.
    Name- Ratnakar Foundation Trust
    Director – Shashwat Swaroop Pal
    exp- NDLM, ESDM, PMGDISHA

  14. Dr. Leena Rajani on

    Dear sir,
    I belong to Gujarat and working as a lecturer in self finance college. As its my passion to work for society I want to join csr. So please give me guidelines and inform about procedure.
    Thanking you.

  15. Ravi Bhartia on

    Dear Sir,
    I would like to offer you a place on rent for providing skill training in the heart of Jaipur.
    We own a building in the industrial area which is located in the center of jaipur in the name of Sudershanpura Industrial Area, my building is located on the main road of the industrial area which is very much accessible from the both sides of the road and is easily located.
    The building has a space of over 10000 sq.ft area divided into four floors with attached washroom on each floors.
    If your company or any of you is interested in taking the place to impart training or any other activity then it is the best place located in Jaipur for this purpose.
    Please feel free to contact me on the below contact number.

    Regards
    Ravi Bhartia
    (Chartered Accountant)
    Jaipur
    Ph. +91 9314641610

    • Ravi Bhartia on

      We are interested in providing skill training in Jaipur.
      I am a qualified Chartered Accountant in Jaipur with work experience of over 15 years in indusrty.
      If given a chance we can open a training institute in Jaipur and we have our own place of over 10000 sq.ft. loacted in the center of Jaipur to run the training program.
      Looking forward to a response from your esteemed organisation.
      Regards
      Ravi Bhartia
      (Chartered Accountant (ACA))
      Jaipur
      Ph. +91 9314641610

  16. KCS C/O Farm Research and management foundation,Plot No-11,Ward NO-8,Vill-Darha ,Po-Asarganj,Dist-munger,Bihar ,TP id_TP008558 on

    Dear sir/ Madam
    I have well trained farmers under pmkvy ,but I need to take them for better learning and practice in organic state Uttarakhand or Sikkam ,For which i need C.S.R fund

  17. Respected Sir,

    Sub: Submission of proposal for Sanction of Skill Development Training – in the Developmental area of AP – under CSR activity – Regd.,

    Sri Ram Educational Society (SRES) is a non-profit organization, Registered as a Society in the year 1997. Under Societies Registration Act. 1860. Who is devoted to make a difference in the community? We provide high quality programmes that benefit the poor and vulnerable communities. Our focus is helping people in Education, Health, Environment, Women and Youth Empowerment.

    We are imparting Skill development training to the SC, ST, BC, Minorities and Women etc., as a step towards independent living. In coordination with the Line Departments such as PMKVY, EGMM, MEPMA, Rajiv Yuva Kiranalu, Tribal Welfare Department, Youth Welfare Department, SC Corporation and District Employment Office etc.,

    We ask that you consider supporting our proposal for skilling of youth in your operational area. We serve the best to the needy people in and around your operational area. We can assure you that we can take up the skill development activities in all rural and urban areas of Vijayanagar, Visakhapatnam, East and West Godavari and Krishna Districts.

    We thank you for your consideration of our request, and look forward to hearing from you in the near future.

    Thanking you Sir,

    (Badeti Venkateswara Rao)
    Secretary cum Correspondent
    Sri Ram Educational Society

    # 75-6-21, F-8, Jetti Delux Apartment,
    Opp. Indian Bank, Prakash Nagar,
    Rajamahendravaram – 533101.
    East Godavari Dist. Andhra Pradesh

  18. SRI RAM EDUCATIONAL SOCIETY on

    I M INTERESTED IN CSR PROJECT

    (Badeti Venkateswara Rao)
    Secretary cum Correspondent
    Sri Ram Educational Society

    # 75-6-21, F-8, Jetti Delux Apartment,
    Opp. Indian Bank, Prakash Nagar,
    Rajamahendravaram – 533101.
    East Godavari Dist. Andhra Pradesh.
    Email – sresap97.csr@gmail.com, sresap97.ngo@gmail.com
    Contact No: 7013049719, 7901398262

    Project Manager
    T. Daniel Rajkumar
    Contact No: 7901398265

  19. Dear Sir/Madam,
    I am Rakesh Verma and running a Computer Institute which is just 60 Km from Delhi. I am also interested in doing CSR project so that our people can also take benefit of this scheme.
    Your help will be highly appreciated.
    Please give a chance to do thing better.
    Thanks and Regards,
    Rakesh Verma
    9991 252 252

  20. i am anil daksh running computer course . parlor silai (nulm ) daksh institute sagar m.p 470002 ii am interested csr project our corpate area 3000sft

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