DOLE Sustains Program Thrust on Job-Skills Matching
“The year 2013 saw the huge efforts made by the Aquino administration in our nationwide struggle towards overcoming what we deem as the ‘core’ labor and employment issue... the widening gap and disparity on available jobs and needed skills in the Philippine labor market,” Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Rosalinda-Dimapilis Baldoz expressed the commitment of the government in developing measures to address job and skill mismatch in the country.
Consistently, the issued 2014 Thrusts and Priorities of DOLE focus on the continuous advancement of job-skill matching in the country. These set of identified priorities is still centred in the four convergent programs identified by the government’s Human Development and Poverty Reduction Cluster including education and curriculum review; development of a Philippine Qualifications Framework (PQF); career guidance advocacy; and optimizing the utilization of the Phil-JobNet.
Today, the Philippines already adopts the K to 12 Program. The enhanced basic education curriculum is deemed to be sufficient to prepare students for work. Graduates of senior high school will have middle-level skills that will better equip them to be gainfully employed or become entrepreneurs. Pursuant to the establishment of the PQF through Executive Order No. 82 s. 2012, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) will release this year its registry of qualifications in four indentified sectors i.e. Tourism, Agri-Fishery, Food Processing, and Maritime.
In the recently concluded National Human Resource Summit held on 17 December 2013, two of the convergent programs are at the forefront of this event – the third program on the development of a career guidance advocacy plan and the fourth program on enhancing provision of labor market information (LMI) through the optimization of the PhilJobNet. The summit saw the presentation of the JobsFit Labor Market Information Report 2013-2020 which will be subsequently published in the second quarter this year. The DOLE plans to develop and publish new career pamphlets on in-demand and hard-to-fill occupations as well as industry career guides on the emerging and key employment generating industries enumerated in the JobsFit report.
The NHRS also showcased the launching of the Career Guidance Advocacy Plan 2013-2020 couched under the third convergent program. “Starting this year, the Department, together with Department of Education (DepEd), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), TESDA and Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) shall implement the six activities enrolled in the Plan”, Baldoz said. Thirteen of the sixteen National Federation of Career Guidance Advocates of the Philippines (NFCGAP) officers were also inducted in the Summit. “With the successful induction of NFCGAP officers, we will see more intensified and proactive efforts in operationalizing the Career Guidance Advocacy Plan to its full extent”, Baldoz said.
Secretary Baldoz also revealed the DOLE’s latest venture on job-skills matching called the “JobStart Philippines” Program. It is designed to enhance employability of at-risk youth and set to be tested in four Public Employment Service Offices (PESOs) involving around 1,600 youth starting this January 2014.
“As the primary duty bearer in addressing labor and employment issues in the country, we are accountable of advancing the commitment we have made... Thus, we continuously work on the attainment of inclusive growth through decent and productive employment of the Filipino workforce”, she ended.