Minister Fahy Unveils National Training Plan

May 16, 2014

Minister for Home Affairs Michael Fahy formally unveiled Bermuda’s first ever National Training Plan today [May 16], providing what he called “a road map aimed at strengthening Bermuda’s competitive position in our local and global markets.”

Minister Fahy said, “Helping Bermudians in this challenging job market remains a top priority for this Government. Supporting the training, development and educational needs are only one aspect of our efforts. Ensuring that we have a blueprint for our workforce development needs is another.

“The document I share with you today represents Part I of the National Training Plan. For Government, the importance of undertaking comprehensive planning to ensure a sustainable workforce in Bermuda is a national imperative for us. In that regard, a considerable amount of work, resources and analysis has gone into the creation of the National Training Plan.”

Left to right: Chairman of the National Training Board Mr. Jeff Sousa, Minister of Home Affairs Michael Fahy, and the Director of Workforce Development Mr. George Outerbridge

Fahy press conference

“Prior to the creation of the National Training Plan, what we have historically seen is uncoordinated workforce planning, hampered by the lack of a single comprehensive body to organise key data, types of professions and the training required to support the economy. Thus, the realisation of Part I of this Plan is a significant milestone towards the establishment and alignment of a common framework for the discussions on future workforce numbers.

“The Plan identifies the three pillars of opportunities – current, emerging and transitional.

“Both the public and the private sectors have been carefully examined to determine the current job market as well as short-, medium- and long-term opportunities for employment. The plan considers the short-term to be a period of 24 months, the medium-term, up to five years and the long-term up to 10 years.

“As Bermuda moves to reposition itself as a top destination for business it is my hope that the National Training Plan will be seen as the standard bearer for the coordination and forward planning of the training and development needs of Bermuda’s workforce.”

The Minister’s full statement follows below:

Helping Bermudians in this challenging job market remains a top priority for this Government.

Last week I outlined the many steps that the Ministry of Home Affairs is undertaking to assist those in gaining a more sure footing in the workforce.

Supporting the training, development and educational needs are only one aspect of our efforts. Ensuring that we have a blueprint for our workforce development needs is another.

So today, I am very pleased today to formally unveil Bermuda’s first ever National Training Plan. We view this as a road map aimed at strengthening Bermuda’s competitive position in our local and global markets.

The document I share with you today represents Part I of the National Training Plan.

You will recall that in 2013, soon after I was appointed Minister of Home Affairs, I tasked the occupational advisory groups that are part of the National Training Board [NTB] to develop and ultimately manage and implement a National Training Plan.

For Government, the importance of undertaking comprehensive planning to ensure a sustainable workforce in Bermuda is a national imperative for us.

In that regard, a considerable amount of work, resources and analysis has gone into the creation of the National Training Plan.

Prior to the creation of the National Training Plan, what we have historically seen is uncoordinated workforce planning, hampered by the lack of a single comprehensive body to organise key data, types of professions and the training required to support the economy.

Thus, the realisation of Part I of this Plan is a significant milestone towards the establishment and alignment of a common framework for the discussions on future workforce numbers.

This Government recognises the challenges that we face in our workforce and our economy. In recent years, the recession has resulted in unprecedented challenges within our workforce.

There have been significant job losses, some of which are unlikely to be replaced in the near future. Some variables attributable to our current status included, but were not limited to, the growing skill gaps, increased costs, advanced technology and expanding globalisation.

These issues needed to be immediately addressed and we recognised that our workforce woes were not going to be solved by one single entity. Embarking on the creation of a National Training Plan, would take partnership and collaboration in order to ensure the best possible outcomes for the benefit of Bermuda.

Thus, during this process we were very keen to involve all of our industry stakeholders, including representatives from private sector businesses, hospitality, education and our unions.

They have proved to be an invaluable resource of information. A critical delivery item in the plan was to illustrate career pathways, both traditional and non-traditional, that will ensure Bermudians are also positioned to avail themselves of prospects in the economic resurgence, both locally and globally.

The Plan identifies the three pillars of opportunities – current, emerging and transitional.

Both the public and the private sectors have been carefully examined to determine the current job market as well as short-, medium- and long-term opportunities for employment. The plan considers the short-term to be a period of 24 months, the medium-term, up to five years and the long-term up to 10 years.

Ultimately, as stakeholders and members of the public delve deeper into the pages of Part I of the National Training Plan they will begin to appreciate and understand the steps that must be taken to build new capacity and develop human capital.

You will also see a clearer more coordinated picture of how Part I of this Plan aligns with our overall goals of protecting Bermudian jobs by transitioning to a place of reducing our reliance on overseas labour.

Finally, as Bermuda moves to reposition itself as a top destination for business it is my hope that the National Training Plan will be seen as the standard bearer for the coordination and forward planning of the training and development needs of Bermuda’s workforce.

I want to take this opportunity to thank the team at the Department of Workforce Development as well as the Chairman of the National Training Board, Mr. Jeff Sousa, JP, MP, and the Deputy Chairman, Mr. Vince Ingham for dedicating their time and effort to compiling this document.

We are very pleased with Part I and we are encouraged at the fact that it is a step in the right direction.

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The full National Training Plan – Part I can be read below [PDF here]:

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Comments (3)

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  1. Steve Biko says:

    That’s good, about 30 years too late but good.