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IDB calls for overhaul of labour training strategies

Research by Inter-American Development Bank has found that employers in The Bahamas are having difficulty finding the people with the right set of skills. The bank suggests that on-the-job training strategies tailored to current and future labor market needs could benefit employability and productivity. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015
Thursday, July 16, 2015

New on-the-job training strategies tailored to current and future labour market needs could benefit employability and productivity in The Bahamas. The country currently faces a skills gap that is becoming an obstacle to productivity and limits workers’ employability, according to the Wages and Productivity Survey (WPS) and the Inter-American Development Bank Labour Market Study (LMS).

According to the report, most employers report difficulties in finding the right set of skills for their jobs.

The most frequently named difficulty was under-qualified applicants (34 per cent), followed by applicants’ lack of experience (29 per cent) and lack of soft skills (28 per cent). The employers stress that there is a disconnection between the education and training systems with the needs of the industries, and that a collective effort is needed to overcome the skills shortage.

The report also found that 47 per cent of the firms did invest in training, but not to the level they think is needed. Larger firms and industries in the financial sector were also more likely to conduct workers’ training. The main areas for improving skills are production, soft skills and computing.

To tackle this situation, the Inter-American Development Bank suggests that training systems should evolve into new models that better integrate the participation of public institutions, the training sector and companies.

Best practices in skills development usually combine frequent interactions between the employers, demand-based training, and the linking of educational providers and students in a national institutional framework that facilitates continual adaptation of education and training to private sector skills needs.

A two-day International Forum organized by the Secretariat of the National Development Plan in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank , the Ministry of Labour and National Insurance, and The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers’ Confederation under the theme: “TransFormation: Skills for Work,” is taking place 16-17 July 2015 at the British Colonial Hilton.

Bahamas Foreign Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell was in Ethiopia this week to attend the third International Conference on Financing for Development.

Prime Minister Perry Christie has announced that Baha Mar Ltd and affiliated entities are to go into liquidation. Watch or read the Prime Minister's announcement here.

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