Skills framework, reference for upskilling, reskilling

Companies can utilize the Philippine Skills Framework (PSF) initiative to upskill and reskill their workforce to boost their competitiveness and succeed in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (FIRe).

“The Fourth Industrial Revolution has made the need for reskilling and upskilling a greater imperative than before. The increasing adoption and utilization of digital technologies in industry are expected to redefine tasks, jobs, and skills as soon as 2025,” Ma. Fe Avila, chief at Philippine Trade Training Center-Global MSME Academy (PTTC-GMEA) Planning and Programming Division, said at the Philippine FIRe Skills Week celebration.

Avila said the wide use of digital tools and technologies in performing tasks is also now considered essential as working remotely from home or from sites other than the office becomes more common.

She cited a 2021 McKinsey report indicating over 50 percent of companies consider reskilling their current workforce, 20 percent of them are looking to hire additional talents, 20 percent for redeploying workers to new roles, and 6 percent possibly opt for outsourcing in the midst of FIRe.

“This study mostly is on big countries. I think this is also true for the Philippines,” she added.

Avila said the same report found that about 42 percent of companies are saying they are currently experiencing a skills gap, while 44 percent expect the skills gap to occur in the next five years.

“So the skilling initiative that we need to implement for our people and our workforce should improve both hard and soft skills, as well as competencies that are industry specific and cross sectoral in application. But regardless of these findings, regardless of the roles or strategies that they take, we will notice that it is about skilling, it is about reskilling and upskilling,” she said.

Avila said the PSF, a robust reference for the upskilling and reskilling, contains skills documents, information about the different sectors, emerging trends, and employment opportunities.

She said eight priority sectors are targeted for PSF development which include logistics and supply chain, information technology-business process management, construction, tourism, food (agriculture and fishery), creative industry, manufacturing, and health and wellness.

In cooperation with other agencies, Avila said the PTTC, the project direction unit for the PSF initiative, has completed three sectors specific skills framework for the supply chain logistics, and game development and digital arts, and animation in the creative industry.

Also being planned is a PSF on tourism, she said.

“Aside from the sector-specific PSF, PTTC initiated the development of the cross-sectoral PSF for business functions because we believe that we have to complement the sector specific skills with the business skills that are needed also by the different sectors. So we completed the business development PSF on marketing and sales,” she added.

Avila further said employers, individuals, education and training providers, and government, unions and professional bodies can utilize the PSF.

“For the employers, it is a very big help in terms of the different HR (human resource) processes in the company like in recruitment and talent management, in staff deployment, and performance and rewards management,” she said.

“It also helps the individuals as far as their education and career plan is concerned, what training they need for skills upgrading and deepening. It will also help them find the opportunities for career progression and conversion,” Avila added.

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