JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Global Sector Services (GSS) Apprenticeship programme, aimed at equipping some 400 personnel for higher value-added jobs in the local industry over a four-year period, was officially launched on Tuesday (January 28).
  • One hundred apprentices will benefit from in-house training per year at GSS firms, beginning in April.
  • The objective is to promote the growth and expansion of the sector by building the capacity of existing staff and upskilling them from entry level to supervisory roles.

The Global Sector Services (GSS) Apprenticeship programme, aimed at equipping some 400 personnel for higher value-added jobs in the local industry over a four-year period, was officially launched on Tuesday (January 28).

One hundred apprentices will benefit from in-house training per year at GSS firms, beginning in April.

The objective is to promote the growth and expansion of the sector by building the capacity of existing staff and upskilling them from entry level to supervisory roles.

GSS firms include those operating in the business process outsourcing (BPO), knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) and information technology-enabled services (ITES).

President of Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO), Diane Edwards, in her address at the launch held at the agency’s head office in New Kingston, said that the programme will serve as a lynchpin “in driving Jamaican young people forward”.

She said that the outsourcing industry, which employs upwards of 36,000 persons, is a dynamic and fast-moving sector, therefore, upskilling the workers will enable them to occupy higher-end jobs.

Ms. Edwards said firms in the GSS collaborated and agreed on the modules of the supervisory training curriculum and formally endorsed the course outline on November 15, 2019.

“HEART/NTA, a key beneficiary partner in the GSS Project, graciously offered to build out the training curriculum under the guidance of the industry that will result in each apprenticeship receiving national certification,” she noted.

Programme Manager, GSS, Marjorie Straw, said formal invitations will go out to firms operating in the industry by the second week in February. She said sensitisation sessions have already begun.

“We have been and we continue to engage firms… so that the programmes can all begin uniformly by the first week in April in the firms operating in the sector,” she said.

Chief of Operations, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Adriana La Valley, for his part, said skills development is critical and will better enable workers to supply the demands of their clients in a manner that meets and exceeds global standards.

The GSS programme is being implemented under the direction of the GSS Board and is being managed through the Competitiveness Fund, with direct oversight by the Project Execution Unit at JAMPRO.

Activities under the programme are being funded through a US$15-million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

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