Building workforce’s competence part of HR strategy
Wed, 03/30/2016 - 12:51am Barbados1
A key aspect of Barbados’ Human Resource Development Strategy (HRDS) is that of building the competence of the local workforce and as such, emphasis is being placed on ensuring that workers build “career security” rather than “job security”.
Pointing out the above recently was Orville Lynch, Human Resource Development (HRD) Specialist in the HRD Project Unit.
“Research has shown that a competent workforce increases productivity, which by extension increases economic development and social development in the country. So if we want to push this country to another level, we must build the workforce competence of our people and we must continue to guard those competencies,” Lynch commented.
“Competencies for 2010 or 1999 would not work for 2016 and 2020, so there needs to be a constant upgrade of these competencies. Having done that, (we look to move away from the idea of) job security – one job for all your life in a par-ticular area. The HR strategy is premised on the notion of building career security, as opposed to job security, which means that you give people a set of cross-functional skills that they can move laterally across the place,” Lynch added.
“So they can move laterally, they can go global. In other words, they have marketable skills to move in different directions throughout their lives, rather than being locked down to one place until they die,” he further stated.
Lynch also noted that in building workers’ competencies, it gives them greater flexibility and versatility, in terms of their own career.
“Once you give people that flexibility, then it increases their employability, meaning they can go anywhere and look for a job, get a job and they can move between jobs and that is what we are looking for,” he stressed.
“The HRD strategy is about increasing people’s choices,” he maintained.
The HRD specialist further noted that the aim is to build people’s competencies, regardless of their status in the educational system. By strengthening the weakest links, Barbados can enhance its position on the Human Development Index, given some slippage in recent areas, he said, as well as on the Competitive Index and the Innovative Index.
Lynch’s comments came at the start of a two-day Proposal Writing Workshop held for the benefit of key staff members within government, the private sector and civil society organisations. The sessions were conducted at the Baobab Towers in Warrens, St. Michael. (RSM)