In today’s labour market people change jobs and careers far more frequently than they did in the past. People therefore need to have skills which allow them to work in a variety of roles, and qualifications that are recognised across a range of industry sectors and by a range of employers. It is particularly important that lower level programmes and qualifications do not limit peoples’ options in the early stages of their tertiary education for any career.
There are many ways to ensure that people can use their skills in a wide variety of situations. Some ITOs are responding by making qualifications more general rather than being very specific. Armed with more generic qualifications and ‘soft’ skills people can apply their skills in a wider range of industries and jobs and their career paths will not be restricted along the way.
Another way ITOs are working in this area is by tailoring qualifications to meet the specific needs of roles within industries so that potential or existing employees can take up jobs in areas of interest. This means ensuring that programmes and qualifications are relevant and meet the changing needs of industries and workplaces. These programmes and qualifications also provide pathways for people already in employment to gain qualifications and progress within their chosen career.
ITOs have a role to play to publicise career pathways within and across sectors so that people already in an industry, or those thinking about entering an industry, have access to detailed information about what types of jobs their skills may be best suited to. The job seekers also need to be informed about what further training or development might be needed to progress in their chosen occupation or to change to another related occupation, and where to find it.
All case studies are published in Skilling New Zealand: ITO Leadership in Action
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