350 companies tap ITE's expertise to boost their on-the-job training programmes

Initia Group, which was trying to expand its hair salon arm, was having trouble finding and training talent, and working with ITE's certified on-the-job training centre helped its staff become better trainers. PHOTO: WALKING ON SUNSHINE

SINGAPORE - Tapping the Institute of Technical Education's (ITE) expertise in on-the-job training helped Initia Group improve its sales by 30 per cent and its customer retention rate by 50 per cent.

Initia, which has businesses in both the food and beverage and beauty industries, was trying to expand its hair salon arm, but was having trouble finding and training talent, especially locals.

Chief executive Luke Yi told The Straits Times: "We were looking at doing internal training but we weren't experienced in running any sort of academy, so we decided to start working with ITE last December."

Mr Yi said working with ITE's certified on-the-job training centre helped give it a framework for training and helped its staff become better trainers.

He added: "The certification ITE offers also helps with credibility, making it easier to recruit people."

Initia was one of 350 companies which have partnered ITE to improve their on-the-job training, said Minister of State for Trade and Industry Alvin Tan.

He was speaking at the opening of the ITE Industry Partnership Forum on Monday (Nov 8).

At the forum, ITE announced improvements to its on-the-job training scheme.

It said it will now support companies in developing blueprints for their in-house training, providing a streamlined view of work processes and listing the tasks required for various roles.

ITE also said it will place more emphasis on equipping company trainers with teaching skills through its Train the Trainer programme, which draws more than 1,200 participants annually.

Participating companies will now also give certificates to employees for completing on-the-job training.

In his speech, Mr Tan said the Covid-19 pandemic has shown how important it is for Singapore's workforce to be agile and resilient to remain globally competitive.

He said: "Amid this changing landscape, ITE has played a vital role to help companies empower their workforce, in partnership with the industry.

"ITE has helped companies to build their in-house training capabilities, recognise skills that their workers have picked up on the job, and introduce new ideas to increase their productivity. These initiatives can help our businesses be more agile and sustainable."

At the forum, ITE also signed memorandums of understanding with six companies in the aerospace, logistics and energy sectors.

The companies are GlobalFoundries Singapore, Katoen Natie Singapore, Micron Semiconductor, Omron Electronics, Sunseap Group and Volocopter Asia.

ITE said the new partnerships will help its students gain relevant skills, and keep its staff and training up to date.

It added: "The partnerships will also provide opportunities for ITE students to learn at the workplace and gain career opportunities through internships, industry projects and workplace training."

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