In October 2020, the Ministry of Labour and the Public Employment Service (ADEM) presented the Future Skills Initiative, starting with a flexible and free training programme designed to meet jobseekers’ current and future needs.
The Future Skills Initiative is based on three components:
Upskilling/reskilling of jobseekers
The first implemented measure in the frame of the jobseeker upskilling/reskilling component of the initiative is a new training programme, which includes a practical component. It is addressed to jobseekers who have attended at least six years of secondary education and are fluent in French, and offers the possibility of autonomous distance learning. It consists of a three-month virtual training programme developed in cooperation with the Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber of Employees, and is oriented towards the development of:
- soft skills (communication, creativity, adaptability, etc.),
- digital skills, and
- project management skills.
It is a blend of autonomous e-learning and virtual classes. After the training, participants can follow a six-month internship in the public sector, during which they will put their newly acquired professional skills into practice and gain administrative experience. The training is done in the framework of an existing employment measure, temporary paid employment (OTI), allowing participants to receive a subsidy in addition to the unemployment allowance. Throughout the training and the internship, participants actively continue their job search and remain available on the private and public market.
Between October 2020 and mid-March 2021, 150 participants started the new training programme. Among them, 22 left the programme because they found a job and 37 have already started their internship. Some 60% of the participants are women and 32% are 45 years old or older.
In addition to this extensive upskilling programme, ADEM is also launching increased access to e-learning platforms (digital skills, soft skills, project management) accessible to a wider public.
National and sector-level studies
A second part of the initiative is the development of national and sector-level studies, through which, in addition to the production of key data on the evolution of job offers, ADEM will analyse the evolution of occupations, activities, and skills, in collaboration with employer associations and research institutes. The results of these studies have already contributed to the implementation of the above training programme. They will also contribute to the development of skills strategies and initiatives based on concrete forecasts and provide practical information to individuals, employers, and professional and sector associations.
Upskilling/reskilling of employees
The third component of Future Skills is dedicated to the upskilling/reskilling of employees. To this end, the experience gained through realising the Digital Skills Bridge pilot project (2018-19) will be used. The main objective of this project was to anticipate the impact of technological advances on jobs and to test the usefulness of supporting companies and their employees in the digital transformation of work, jobs and skills.