New programme to help non-IT professionals boost digital skills

SINGAPORE - A new suite of training programmes launched on Thursday (July 12) aims to help professionals who do not have an IT background gain digital proficiency skills.

The Digital Proficiency Programme (DigiPro), targeted at busy professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs), consists of short modular courses in areas such as cyber security, business data and insights, content creation, as well as personal branding, for a start.

Speaking at the programme's launch at Mandarin Orchard Singapore hotel on Thursday (July 12), Manpower Minister Josephine Teo described it as a step towards building an agile workforce needed to meet future challenges.

The future of work is still being shaped and "no one knows exactly what it will look like, or how to prepare for it", she said.

However, she added, it can be rewarding and it also pays to stay ahead of the competition.

"This means that we will need an agile workforce and agile businesses that are always alert to emerging trends, always checking what works, what doesn't, always seeking to be better," she added.

She said technology would help reduce the reliance on manpower in some areas, but growing companies may still have to hire more people to fill other newer jobs.

With technology boosting productivity, wages can be higher as well, she added.

In order to benefit from this, workers must not be "stuck with old skills in declining businesses", and should be given a chance to reskill and be redeployed, she said.

Mr Tan Kiat How, chief executive of the Infocomm Media Development Authority of Singapore – which supports DigiPro – said the Singapore Computer Society initiative will help to support and develop digitally skilled professionals, taking Singapore closer to its goal of becoming a global digital economy.

"There is a strong demand for tech-savvy professionals across the economy as digital transformation of industries and businesses picks up pace," he added.