Orient Magazine Issue 81 - April 2021 - Page 44

FUTURE OF WORK :
WORKFORCE TRANSFORMATION & TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS

Workforce Transformation & Technological Developments

By Julia Ng Lee Hoon , Group Director , Enterprise Development Group , Workforce Singapore ( WSG )
In this article , Workforce Singapore ( WSG ) shares how they are committed to helping companies in Singapore transform jobs and future-proof their workforce .
The Future of Work is now . Across workplaces around the world , people have experienced the epochal changes that COVID-19 unleashed . Singapore was not spared those seismic shocks to its labour market , businesses and social fabric . But crises often bring on a transformative effect as well . Working remotely , using more technology , communicating and collaborating virtually , conducting business online , and learning digitally all became the order of the day . Jobs were lost , found and transformed , sometimes within a very short span of time . While the economic scarring has been significant , the future , as envisaged some decades ago , has arrived earlier than expected as a result of the pandemic and hence why we say , The Future of Work is now and something for which Workforce Singapore ( WSG ) is committed to helping companies in Singapore transform jobs and future-proof their workforce .
In Singapore , the transformation was already well underway but picked up speed during the pandemic . Structural shifts were taking place in the world
– global growth was subdued ; global productivity growth had been sluggish and global value chains had been shifting . Singapore ’ s national lexicon already featured “ Smart Nation ”, “ SkillsFuture ”, “ Adapt and Grow ” and “ advanced manufacturing base for the world ” much earlier on – this just moved into pole position when COVID-19 hit .
The Committee on the Future Economy ( CFE ), convened in January 2016 , developed strategies for the next decade . Industry Transformation Maps ( ITMs ) were also started that year . They served as roadmaps for driving change not only within the industry but across companies and in turn impacting the economy . There were multiple converging forces including the increasing adoption of cuttingedge technologies , digitalisation , shifts in demographics , and greater connectivity as well as a broadening of the workforce since alternative work arrangements became possible with a gig economy .
www . wsg . gov . sg / SGUnited . html # forenterprise for more details .
In Singapore , the transformation was already well underway but picked up speed during the pandemic .
The immediate need has been to provide jobs for various categories – fresh graduates , professionals , managers , executives , technicians ( PMETs ), mature workers and midcareer workers , as well as workers who wish to switch away from the very sector they have been working in . WSG is at the forefront of these initiatives , including career conversion programmes such as the Professional