Market-oriented skills for youth employment
wasi ahmed |
Mar 29, 2022 8:46:10 p.m.
It is generally recognized that with the growth of technology, particularly information and communication technology (ICT), youth employment everywhere is becoming increasingly conditional on rapidly emerging skills needs. various in the workplace. It is therefore urgent to prepare young job seekers for the requirements of the market. Countries around the world are facing this challenge as young people not only need to be guided to prepare accordingly, but facilities also need to be created by governments for this purpose.
Although this is an inescapable reality for all countries, the crux of the matter is to what extent young people are able to embrace this reality. A report prepared by UNICEF in collaboration with Generation Unlimited and PwC, published recently, indicates that young people around the world are not able to identify or acquire the skills needed for today’s job market. , contributing to the global skills gap and exacerbating youth unemployment. It indicates that young people are unable to identify the skills they need for future job opportunities. They are also unable to access relevant vocational training and employers do not have a standard way of verifying the skills that job seekers claim to possess. The report notes that there is a mismatch between education and training requirements and systems. “A global skills gap, economic decline and a labor market that demands more complex and diverse skills than ever have contributed to a 12% decline in youth employment over the past two decades. Governments and businesses must come together to give today’s youth — future workers and employees — the skills and opportunities they need to access meaningful employment and thrive in the labor market. work today,” said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore on the occasion of the release of the report.
Young people looking for work are perhaps more vulnerable today than ever. There are fears that the compounded threats of worsening inequality, lack of opportunity and disruption from Covid-19 could have protracted consequences for young people around the world.
The report suggests four actions that business and government leaders could take to address the skills gap and youth unemployment:
⦿ Create a skills mapping system to define skills, categories and ways to measure skills. The system must be scalable and adaptable to local and national applications. A skills tracker is essential for identifying gaps and advocating for education and training opportunities.
⦿ Use workplace training to support a national skills development engine. By linking elements of enterprise-based training programs to a government-led national strategic framework, stakeholders can help establish a high-quality, scalable and cost-effective national skills development program.
⦿ Build a national digital skills verification trust. Young people should be able to easily and securely record and store skills development credentials. Stakeholders can help by developing a central blockchain repository to track acquisition.
⦿ Develop regional and national skills forums to improve information sharing among key stakeholders, including employers, educators, governments, associations and young people.
The report notes that closing the skills gap requires “the whole of society”. Partnerships between government, business, multilateral organizations and young people themselves are essential to succeed in this task.
In this regard, experts highlighted the need to align academic learning with industry or workplace requirements at different levels. Observers say this is not only necessary for high-end white-collar jobs where skill matching is an integral part of job-related activities, but also for semi-skilled jobs.
The introduction of a digitized system in the management of companies and the maintenance of the whole chain of innovation, production and marketing at a level of good functioning call for a major change in the landscape of employment. The digital dynamic is rapidly transforming the employment scenario in all sectors, including financial services, healthcare, entertainment, transport and, of course, information and communication technologies. Millions of jobs requiring advanced digital skills will be created over the next decade, experts predict; but many countries predict a shortage of skilled workers to fill these jobs. While young people are often seen as “digital natives”, the reality is that the majority of them lack job-relevant digital skills. This is more the case for poor and developing countries. For decades, these countries relied heavily on unskilled or, at best, semi-skilled labor at home, as well as jobs overseas. Bangladesh is no exception.
This and other related issues were highlighted at a two-day event titled Movers’ Summit in the capital, jointly organized by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Earth Foundation. According to organizers, the Movers program is a market-driven skills development initiative that aims to eradicate youth unemployment by developing advanced skills in young people and connecting them to income opportunities. While emphasizing the need to acquire targeted skills for the employment of educated young people and to draw a roadmap for them, the speakers during the event underlined the importance of innovation and digital technologies to make to changes in the labor market at home and abroad.
The task is huge, even daunting, and moving in the right direction is all that matters in the long run.