This tag is associated with 49 posts

The Supply Of Skilled Labour Matters Too

If the problem of mismatch between jobs and skills – in which “the number of layoffs has surged to more than 13,600 in the first nine months of the year, the highest since the global financial crisis some seven years ago” (TODAY, Nov. 19) – is conceptualised as a mismatch between the supply of skilled labour in the classroom with the demand for it at the workplace, then the responsibility to fix this manpower crunch does not fall solely on the industries, even with their growing demands for skilled labour. Instead more attention should also be paid to the schools, to the schools offering technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in particular, on whether graduates are equipped with the right skills and knowledge, and whether graduates are prepared for a more ambiguous future. Continue reading

Consider The Benefits Of Skills Training Too

Absent from the discourse about skills training in the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the benefits for both the workers and the companies, in improving labour productivity, in increasing retention and advancement opportunities in the same workplace, and in enhancing long-term growth prospects. Far too often – as it is with the latest SME Development Survey, which found that 85 per cent of the SMEs surveyed said they were “hindered in their efforts to upgrade the skills of their workforce” (TODAY, Nov. 3) – the emphasis remained on the costs of skills training to the company, and framed in terms of the lack of time and capacity, other priorities, and the impact on the “day-to-day operations of their company”. Continue reading

The Threat Of Job Obsolescence

Necessitated in part by the threat of job obsolescence – since “changes unleashed by digital, robotic, and genomic technology, renders economic structures obsolete rapidly” (ST, Oct. 14) – the addition of seven subjects to hands-on learning at the GCE “O” and “N” level examinations is encouraging. And even though there is no doubt that educators will tailor their approaches to help students master skills or gain knowledge for the future, this same threat of job obsolescence also means over-specialisation will be a challenge too. In other words, students cannot be pigeon-holed too specifically into pathways without some generalisable abilities, if these pathways may not exist in the future. Continue reading

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