Improving skills and creating jobs through digital transformation – Manila Bulletin

Transitioning to a digital world requires a proactive strategy that relies on anticipating change and providing organizations and employees with the skills they need to thrive. Digital transformation is more people-centric than technology-centric. If you want to adapt to an even more digital future, you need to develop the capabilities of your current and future workforce and close the gap between talent supply and demand. The effectiveness of technology can only be maximized if combined with the right people skills. Although technological disruptions have generally led to automation and the removal of

jobs, it has also always led to the creation of new jobs. However, the crucial element of technological innovation is people. The skill sets needed for work are undergoing significant change as a result of digital transformation.

We can simultaneously improve technology and people if we can use human adaptability to retrain and upskill our workforce. Even the most remarkable and hardworking humans will become less valuable if they are not skilled enough to use and maximize technology. The most creative technology is useless if those who are supposed to use it cannot. The main takeaway is that before considering investing in technology, country and business leaders should consider investing in the people skills that can turn that technology into something deeply meaningful. Highly qualified people and those who can

adapt to changing skills needs have a wide choice of employment options thanks to digitalisation. However, low-skilled routine workers risk losing their jobs and will have to learn to adapt to the digital age. Moreover, technology has the potential to be an effective tool to facilitate education and training for all.

New technologies and improved processes are important, but any digital transformation requires the right group of people. The workforce can be equipped to create efficiencies you never knew were possible by using digital transformation in training and development with the right technologies.

Every citizen should acquire the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to live and work in a world that is becoming increasingly technologically dependent on education and training institutions at all levels. Both for work performance and for fully engaging in a digital society, having digital skills is essential. These include general abilities such as web browsing, email or instant messaging, as well as the ability to use online platforms related to one’s field of work.

Moreover, the effects of digitalization have boosted job growth across the global economy. The adoption of new technologies and the associated job profiles for those affected by changing production/service delivery processes are both expected to contribute to positive employment growth through digitalisation.

What needs to be done is to increase investment in digital skills development through upskilling and reskilling. To fully capture and exemplify the potential of human digital enhancement, organizations should seek to test new technologies with workers. The aim should be to discover new methods of qualification and to examine innovative partnerships and cutting-edge models for vocational skills. Relevant sectors need to work together to understand the need and supply of digital skills with partners from business, education and civil society. Creating People-Centred Technology and Digital Skills in Education


The digital transformation opens up many opportunities to strengthen skills and create new jobs. But in every opportunity, challenges will always exist. One of them is the lack of adequate skills. This is a challenge not only for the workforce, but also for the employees.

Mr. Sayo is Vice President of the Employers Confederation of the Philippines and President of 43rd National Employers Conference