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Vital that we prepare youth for world of work


ELAINE BOURNE, president HRMAB

Vital that we prepare youth for world of work

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I WRITE in response to concerns expressed recently in the media by employers on the seeming inadequate preparation of many youth for success in the workplace.

In addition to academic skills, school leavers need to be able to utilise a range of applied skills including oral and written communication, problem-solving, professionalism, teamwork, and leadership on the job.

These skills are of critical importance, especially now labour markets are hyper-competitive, and there is a greater need to be employable.

The Human Resource Management Association of Barbados (HRMAB) Inc. is aware of glaring deficiencies among some secondary and tertiary level school leavers.

These include the inability to adequately conduct themselves during the interview process, and even writing an acceptable job application letter.

HRMAB is cognisant that the Government should not have to bear the responsibility of ensuring school leavers are workforce-ready, alone.

As part of its community outreach programme, HRMAB is assisting youth with acquiring essential workforce readiness skills.

For the third consecutive year, the association joined with the Barbados Community College, Industry Services Unit and Applied Performance Solutions Inc., to host the Are You Ready For The World of Work? workshop.

From July 5 to 23 some youths were exposed to practical knowledge, tools and skills from several leading human resource and business professionals in diverse areas.

These disciplines included financial management, business etiquette, resume writing, career management, social media, and using Microsoft Office.

This broad-based programme of knowledge and skills will enhance participant workforce readiness as an employee or entrepreneur.

Global competitiveness for limited resources is fierce, and the relationship between having a world-class workforce and staying competitive is undeniable.

There must be a strategic alliance between the education and business sectors to ensure school leavers possess the applied skills and core academic subjects which will prepare them for success in the workplace.

This partnership between business and education will enhance the Barbadian workforce’s competitiveness in the global economy,

ELAINE BOURNE, president HRMAB

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