Functioning in an increasingly globalised environment, many companies feel that foreign degree holders have better technical skills for jobs compared to the Indian university graduates, says a survey by British Council.
As per British Council's 'India Employability Survey 2014', as much as 39 per cent of the companies in India said that foreign university graduates are better prepared for the jobs than those from Indian ones.
Further, the survey conducted among 200 Indian and foreign companies in the country found that 41 per cent have hired at least one foreign-university graduate in the last two years.
Sector-wise, consumer goods (60 per cent), services (52.2 per cent), infrastructure, telecom and energy (50 per cent) firms are the most likely to have hired at least one candidate with a foreign degree.
Industrial (34.5 per cent) and IT (35.7 per cent) firms are the least likely to hire foreign degree graduates, the survey said.
"As organisations strive to compete and drive business growth in an increasingly global marketplace, they place significant importance on international education in talent they recruit," British Council India director Rob Lynes said.
"Hiring foreign-university graduates is an integral part of talent plan for a large percentage of firms," Lynes added.
About 41 per cent of companies surveyed prefer to hire graduates from American universities, while 25.8 per cent do so for universities in the United Kingdom.
Subject-knowledge related to the job was ranked the most important skill by the companies. This was followed by communication skills, the ability to apply one's knowledge to solve real-world issues and critical thinking skills.
Inter-personal skills, the ability to work with diverse groups of people, leadership experience and the ability or willingness to work hard, were placed lower down the order.
"Foreign-degree holders appear to be more disposed towards having strong 'technical' skills, critical thinking, the ability to use knowledge to solve real-world problems," Lynes said.
On the other hand, Indian-university graduates were found to be relatively stronger on the 'soft' skills, such as working with diverse groups of people, and inter-personal skills, he added.
"While the US leads the way on almost every major skill, the UK is a clear second in terms of communication and inter personal skills and Germany come close to second along with the UK in most other arenas," Lynes noted.