Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Skillnet Ireland ranked best in world for upskilling initiatives

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Paul Healy, CEO of Skillnet Ireland, said the agency is helping businesses in the country ‘meet the challenges presented by an ever-changing world of work’.

Skillnet Ireland, the national talent development agency, has been ranked first in the world for best practice in upskilling initiatives for enterprise.

This is according to a European Commission report published recently that analysed upskilling and reskilling policy initiatives across the world. The report also ranked Skillnet Ireland first out of 47 global operations for its impact on businesses and contribution to the economy.

The recognition comes just ahead of the formal ending of the European Year of Skills, an initiative to address skills gaps in the EU and reskill people with the focus on digital and green technology skills.

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Patrick O’Donovan, TD, said today (3 May) that the initiative that began on 9 May last year recognised that digital and green transitions represent “both an opportunity and a challenge” for the workforce.

“It is necessary to equip everyone in the workforce with the skills needed to face these transitions. This is why it is so important to have a system of continuous learning that allows people to upskill in a way that suits their needs,” O’Donovan said.

“The importance of continuous learning throughout an individual’s life is essential in a rapidly changing world, paving a way for individual wellbeing, continued economic success and a sustainable future for Ireland.

“To that end, I want to congratulate the excellent work done by Skillnet, as Ireland’s national workforce development agency, which has seen them ranked as the number one best-practice upskilling initiative worldwide – something to be very proud of.”

‘Ever-changing world of work’

Just last month, Skillnet Ireland revealed that one in five businesses polled by the agency were experiencing difficulties in sourcing people with climate action and sustainability skills.

According to the survey, 65pc of businesses stated that staff would require training for the digital transition, while 59pc indicated that employees would benefit from upskilling in the areas of climate action and sustainability.

For larger employers, the key tech upskilling demands identified were in robotic process automation (54pc), cloud computing (47pc), artificial intelligence (42pc), marketing (70pc) and sustainable supply chain management (69pc).

Two-thirds of large employers reported that they have been encountering persistent challenges when trying to hire new talent with the appropriate skillsets.

Paul Healy, CEO of Skillnet Ireland, welcomed the recognition of its contribution to workforce development policy in Ireland and to helping business to “meet the challenges presented by an ever-changing world of work”.

“I would like to acknowledge the commitment and ingenuity of our industry partner organisations across our 70 Skillnet business networks and national talent initiatives,” Healy said.

“We look forward to continuing working together to make sure that Ireland has a future-ready workforce to navigate the digital and green transitions and enabling companies to build a competitive edge in these rapidly evolving areas.”

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