Ibec, the group that represents Irish business, today launched a major new campaign - Smarter World, Smarter Work – in Trinity’s Long Room Hub, which calls for a range of reforms to position Ireland for major labour market changes. Ibec said that while new technology will create many new quality jobs, some jobs will inevitably go. We need to actively plan for this reality. Over 60% of children today will work in jobs that currently do not exist and estimates suggest that students currently in the education system will have held an average of 10-12 jobs by the time they reach the age of 38.
In response to these labour market shifts, the business group is calling for a new approach to flexible working, better support for those out of work and labour market rules that actively encourage work and job creation. This demands a reform of childcare, retirement and pensions policy, and an overhaul of our social protection system.
The campaign sets out a positive vision for the future of work, and identifies the priority actions needed to deliver this. It proposes a range of actions across four key areas: Investment in skills and employability, flexibility at all life stages, a dynamic labour market and smoother career transitions (see attached pdf for details).
At the launch event, Ibec also set out detailed recommendations on how to equip graduates with the skills to thrive in the new world of work. A new report, Future ready: improving graduate employability skills, calls for more investment in education, additional support for academic staff, a uniform approach to work experience and placements, and a greater involvement of business in curriculum design and delivery (see attached pdf for full details).
Ibec Director of Employer Relations Maeve McElwee said: “Rapid digitalisation, changing lifestyles and demographic shifts mean jobs and careers are being transformed. This brings great opportunities, but also risks. A new era of quality job creation and improved living standards is possible. But we need to embrace technological and workplace change in business and right across society.
Ibec’s report on graduate employability skills focuses on how to better support students entering this new labour market. “Employers are generally satisfied with graduates’ range of skills, but less than 45% are satisfied with graduates’ entrepreneurial and business acumen skills. To address this, business, government and educators must work much closer with each other. Employers need to provide work placements and work-related projects, engage with students in the classroom and help with career clinics" Ms,. McElwee concluded.
- SWSW Graduate skills report WEB.pdf - 887 Kbytes