According to the World Economic Forum, closing the global skills gap could add US$11.5 trillion to global GDP by 2028, but education and training systems need to keep pace with market demands. In addition, as reflected in a new study from the IBM Institute for Business Value (IBV), job seekers are facing big challenges, and one in four consumers surveyed globally plan to switch employers in 2021. With this in mind, IBM announced a new partnership with 30 global organizations including governments, community colleges, non-profits, and employment agencies, focused on improving underserved populations’ skills and employability. 11 organizations from India will be part of the collaboration and will contribute to IBM’s total goal of 500,000 by the end of 2021 through the IBM SkillsBuild program. The announcement was made by IBM CEO Arvind Krishna at at VivaTech.
“Closing the global skills gap is one of the most pressing issues of our time,” said Arvind Krishna, IBM, Chairman and CEO. “That is why I’m proud of these partnerships, which will help people of all backgrounds acquire the skills they need to thrive in a fast-changing global economy.”
The alliances span 12 countries, close to 30 organizations, including 11 from India – The American Indian Foundation Trust, Andhra Pradesh State Skill Development, CSC Academy, CSRBOX, Edunet Foundation, Training Point, Reacha Foundation, Tata Community Initiatives Trust, Unnati Foundation, Uvi Jagriti Sansthan and Jeevitam-VSS Tech Solutions Pvt Ltd.
These organizations will leverage the online learning program IBM SkillsBuild with their members, mostly underserved populations such as veterans, women, minorities, refugees, and unemployed young adults. The program is designed to empower job seekers within 3-6 months with professional workplace readiness and technical skills, earn badges and credentials recognized by the market, in local languages, and with personal mentoring.
ManpowerGroup to connect job seekers
In addition, ManpowerGroup, a world leading workforce solutions company, plans to connect these job seekers to real career opportunities. ManpowerGroup’s Experis brand – global leaders in IT resourcing – will provide data-driven insight on the tech roles employers are seeking to fill, leveraging its experience developing talent and connecting people to positions in cloud and infrastructure, cyber security, data analysis, digital workspace and enterprise applications. ManpowerGroup’s Talent Agents will offer assessment, coaching and personalized support to help learners from organizations in this collaboration to access growth roles and build employability for the long-term.
This alliance will support IBM’s goal to skill 500,000 people by the end of the year through the IBM SkillsBuild program. In addition, the collaboration will also collectively seek to:
- Provide 15,000 people with special program-based learning experiences, including personalized trainings, and the chance to apply for a job.
- Connect the workforce with real career opportunities, including a commitment to secure 7,000 jobs across different industries.
“70% of employers can’t find the skills they need for roles like data analytics, software development and remote customer service,” said Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup Chairman & CEO. “The only way we can address this acute talent shortage is through partnerships across business, government and education. That’s why we are pleased to partner with companies like IBM who share our mission to create a more skilled and diverse workforce, so everyone is able to have a more equitable share of prosperity.”
IBM SkillsBuild program
“IBM India is committed to empowering our nation’s workforce with the new-age skills required to build careers in the digital age. In 2019, we introduced SkillsBuild program in India in collaboration with the Directorate General of Training (DGT) and Ministry of Skills Development (MSDE) and have trained over 100,000 learners through the program so far. Eleven Indian organizations joining the global alliance will give a huge fillip to not just bridging the skill gap in India, but also in initiating learners on the right career path by connecting them to the best opportunities,” said Sandip Patel, Managing Director, IBM India Private Limited.
“SkillsBuild is a transformative platform that is making high quality collaborative learning available to hundreds of thousands of learners. We have many programs that focus on education and skilling as a way to promote inclusive growth. SkillsBuild is a phenomenal addition to our arsenal. We are proud to be a part of this program,” said Nagesh Singh, Executive Director, Edunet Foundation.
“IBM’s SkillsBuild initiative has given infinite opportunities for self-paced and mentored learning for youths who struggle to get professional courses and guidance in normal education programs. CSRBOX has been able to provide over 100 thousand learners access to future skills via SkillsBuild. This is an incredible contribution towards nurturing youth for India’s future workforce requirements,” said Bhomik Shah, CEO & Founder of CSRBOX.
“We are seeing an increased demand for new skills needed in future tech jobs like artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, data analytics, and cloud computing. IDC believes that the partnerships IBM has announced are essential to helping meet the demands for tech jobs of the future. However, the partnership with ManpowerGroup is a perfect complement to IBM SkillsBuild’s mission of providing training for to underrepresented groups as it provides meaningful career opportunities to badged IBM SkillsBuild participants,” said Curtis Price, VP, Social, Environmental Responsibility and Ethics at IDC.
About IBM SkillsBuild
IBM SkillsBuild is a free, digital training program that helps adults develop valuable new skills and find jobs, regardless of their background or education. It operates in 141 countries, offering over 10,000 courses on cybersecurity, data analysis, cloud computing and many other technical disciplines — as well as in workplace skills such as Design Thinking. Participants can earn IBM-branded digital credentials and a global network of 90 nonprofit partners helps connect learners with local job opportunities. Most learners start with no experience and can be ready to apply for IT jobs within six months through participation in hands-on, project-based learning and mentoring support. As of May 2021, 215,275 people have joined IBM SkillsBuild since its launch and completed 341,000 learning hours.