KINGSTON — Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Reginald Budhan, has called on local companies to place greater emphasis on training their employees, to improve their competitiveness.
"In the case of companies, you get employees with basic qualification, it is your responsibility to ensure that they continue the development process," Mr. Budhan said.
"You ensure that you build into your organization, structured ongoing training prgrammes, ensure that you set minimum training time for each category of worker and have a system in place to monitor it. Educated people are more likely to innovate," he argued.
The Permanent Secretary was speaking at the World Quality Day symposium organized by the National Certification Body of Jamaica (NCBJ), on Thursday (November 10), at the Knutsford Court Hotel, New Kingston.
Mr. Budhan said that it was through innovation that competitiveness would move from a low level to a higher level.
"And if we fail to innovate, it means that we are going to fail to keep abreast of competition," he argued.
He told the gathering of industry leaders and personnel representing different agencies, that much of the parameters in global trading has shifted toward accommodating the efficient and those who innovate, and Jamaica must move in that direction.
"We are in a far more competitive environment than before, and our companies will have to be able to produce goods and services, not at the standards of when you had a protected market and could hold a certain market share. Now, you have to be able to compete with the rest of the world," Mr. Budhan said.
He urged the business sector to adopt and certify their operations, noting that countries that are ahead in technology advancement have seen erosion of their competiveness when they fail to move with the times.
Manager of the CBL, Sheryl Anderson, said that the focus of the commemoration is to share information with stakeholders, and for companies to come together and network.
"People need to know about innovation, the latest trend and what it is that the globe is expecting, and we have symposia to communicate with our stakeholders. They get the information and, once you can arm people with information, then they can apply it to their situation,' she said.
By Garfield L. Angus, JIS Reporter