India: Making a virtue out of necessity

Training and Development Centres of the Bavarian Employers' Associations (bfz) • Support for the regional industry clusters of India's automotive sector

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With over 20 years of international experience, bfz is one of the largest German training providers. Faced with a huge shortage of skilled workers, Indian companies are using German expertise within the framework of the dual training system to update their training institutions and to increase the skill levels of their staff.

The cluster approach is very promising when it comes to trialling structures and processes over a short space of time within a clearly defined area. When successful, project findings and experiences should then lead to a transfer of expertise into other clusters. Currently there are more than 1000 such industry clusters in India.

Short training courses and mentor programs

As part of the project SINADE (Strengthening of Industry-oriented Approaches for Dual Education and Training), which is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), ten representatives from each of the individual clusters are to receive training in Germany during a six-week stay. These experts from companies, public educational institutions and cluster organisations shall then form the core group which implements new measures in the clusters and in particular establishes Common Faculty Centres (CFC). At these centres, private and public institutions can access training and continuing education for their staff, and contribute with their ideas to ensuring that training content is tailored to the specific requirements of the relevant stakeholders. A further objective is joint examination processes and standards. Short training courses and mentor programmes for cluster managers are intended to ensure successful training management of the cluster over the long term.

In India, the way in which collaboration functions between public institutions and the private sector is often inadequate. This also applies to vocational education and training. For this reason, SINADE’s main aim is to establish joint training and continuing education structures and to create networks of representatives from different organisations so that the interests and requirements of all partners concerned can be adequately taken into account.

Online courses supplement face-to-face training

Due to the coronavirus crisis, it is rather unlikely that training in Germany will begin this year. However, Indian partner associations and cluster organisations in the SINADE project are now running online courses for a larger group of participants on the subject of vocational education and training. In advance of this, participants were asked about which subjects were appropriate and what they would like to have covered. It quickly became clear that the technical prerequisites for the relevant learning provision were already in place and a high level of familiarity with online learning platforms already existed in India.

At the request of the Indian partners, bfz has now developed six professional technical courses lasting 90 minutes. Each course covers, for example, employee management, assessment of training requirements in companies, technical maintenance, and energy and building technologies in companies. Further online training has been developed specifically for aspiring cluster managers in the SINADE-Project. This will run from the end of July 2020. If participants complete the online training successfully, then these courses—initially born out of necessity—are also to be offered in the future as part of the project.

The involvement of bfz is also bearing further fruit. As a result of bfz’s work on the SINADE project, a major Indian technology group has just recently become aware of the German training provider and is now seeking collaboration in the automotive sector.


This sucess story was first published in the iMOVE publication Developing Skills for Employability with German Partners • 8 Success Stories from the Mobility and Logistics Sector. The brochure was published in November 2020.

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The bfz are a member of the Training and Development Centres of the Bavarian Employers' Associations (Bildungswerk der Bayerischen Wirtschaft e. V.) group (bbw group).

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