More opportunities for skills training for water industry workers

Water industry workers will get a boost next year in skills training as new areas such as smart water management and data analytics take root in the sector.

The Singapore Water Association (SWA), in collaboration with the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), will be engaging member companies to train professionals in the water industry in terms of jobs, skills, digitalisation and water sustainability.

SWA is a trade association formed in 2004 to represent and promote the interests of Singapore firms in the local water sector. Pump supplier Delton Marine and water treatment plant Ace Water are among its almost 300 members.

The initiative, known as the Group Operation and Technology Roadmap (OTR), will be launched by the first quarter of next year and national water agency PUB will be providing guidance in the process.

The two parties signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) yesterday at the NTUC Centre in Marina Boulevard to work out directives and plans to upscale the sector.

Companies in the water industry seeking partnerships with other companies and industry job seekers will also be able to apply for jobs and network more easily virtually on a new platform launched yesterday.

Known as the SWA Digi Expo, the virtual platform will let employers post job openings to seek suitable talent. It has a chatbot equipped to function in many languages, including Japanese, Vietnamese and Thai, and also has a career dashboard where visitors can have their own customised account.

Access to the SWA Digi Expo is free for industry professionals, while NTUC's partner members can participate as exhibitors at $360 per year. This rate is valid till March 31.

An e-learning platform, known as Swat (SWA Training) e-learning, previously launched in July, allows water industry professionals to learn about different aspects of the water industry, such as smart water management or industry-specific data analytics.

Speaking to SWA and its members, NTUC secretary-general Ng Chee Meng, who witnessed the MOU signing, said he hoped that with it, NTUC could work with SWA to identify operational areas that SWA's businesses could benefit from.

"With the OTR and with your (SWA) involvement in shaping the business that you want, we can hopefully help you with the road mapping that will bring better opportunities to drive efficiencies in your business," he said.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 03, 2021, with the headline More opportunities for skills training for water industry workers. Subscribe