The National Rail and Transportation Institute (Vadodra) was recently renamed as the Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya, and is all set to conduct its first batch of students starting August 2023. The deemed university, which was originally instituted in 2018, will be the first to impact education on specific aspects of transport infrastructure and the logistics sector. The new central university will offer two degrees – Bachelor of Engineering (B.Tech) and Masters of Business Administration (MBA), the application process for which has already begun.
With the Prime Minister Gati Shakti National Master Plan and the National Logistics Policy instituted with special focus on skill development, the University is a part of the systematic skill development plan of the government that was announced in this year’s Union Budget and the one before that. The educational institutes established will strive to meet the demand for skilled manpower and reduce the gap between industry demand and the existent workforce in the supply chain sector.
“Against the backdrop of both the National Logistics Policy (2022) and the Gati Shakti masterplan (2021), there was a need for talented manpower in the transport and logistics sector, which, I believe, can be met by this educational institute.”Dr Manoj Choudhary, Vice-Chancellor, Gati Shakti Vishwavidyalaya
Adding that the university was unique in its focus on imparting education on the transport sector, Choudhary also said that railway engineering was just the starting point of courses for the university and it planned to accommodate teaching on other modes of transport in future — such as aviation and shipping.
According to the university website, it is collaborating with USA’s Cornell University, Russia’s St Petersburg State Transport University and the Japan Transport and Tourism Research Institute, among others, for short-term exchange programmes.
Skill development is vital for the supply chain industry, specifically in India, due to several reasons.
A skilled workforce is able to drive higher efficiency and productivity in everyday supply chain and logistics operations. It is able to not only identify areas of potential but also the bottlenecks, and is able to implement various steps to take control of the situation. This further helps in reducing costs and lead times, as well as increase the customer satisfaction score.
Moreover, with the new age technology like AI, Blockchain, ML, Robotics, Data Analysis etc. being installed at various nodes of the supply chain industry, there is an absolute need of a workforce that can operate such technology and, if and when needed, helps to further enhance the benefits that can be extracted from it. Adoption of new technology and adapting to it, as an organisation, becomes much easier when you employ skilled workforce.
In the new world, supply chains are becoming increasingly complex with the number of actors multiplying at each level. For a successful supply chain it is vital that operations are optimised to the highest level and risks are reduced to the minimum level. A skilled workforce is needed for developing contingency plans, establishing robust supplier relationships, and implementing resilient supply chain strategies to minimize the impact of unforeseen events.
If the Government of India’s plans of establishing skilling and educational institutions in various states of the country go as planned, the time is not far away when majority of India’s skilled workforce for the supply chain industry is at par with the global peers.