10 Things Workers Should Know about Getting Ahead in Their Careers

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Jobs are changing fast because of technological advancements and changing business models. What should you know about future jobs? And what can you do to remain employable? Here are 10 things to start with.

  1. Constantly upskill to value add to your job #SkillsFuture

Through the 23 Industry Transformation Maps (ITMs), Singapore aims to transform industries not only for profit but also to create good jobs for you.

For example, it used to take 20 workers in the marine and offshore industry to manually weld big sheets of metal. Now with automation, productivity has increased with only two workers needed to operate the machine and ensure that the welded sheets are aligned.

  1. Broaden your skills in technology

Jobs are constantly being automated. The catalyst for these changes is technology.

You will need to possess broader skills in understanding technology. An example is a tax technologist, who uses information technology as a core aspect of maximising tax function effectiveness. He must also understand fraud detection systems instead of just tax procedures.

Even a journalist like me now has to learn Hypertext Markup Language, better known as HTML, to make sure this article comes up the way it should be.

Check out NTUC LearningHub’s IT Academy, with a whole range of IT courses such as basic IT skills, data analytics and e-commerce.

  1. Job change is not determined by job scope

Don’t look at the ITMs for a list of transformed or new jobs like the classified section.  Jobs, and even industries, are still constantly changing. So what should you look out for to stay employable? Don’t worry, read on.

  1. Understand your economic value

Learn the principles of business success and what you are bringing to the company, instead of only understanding your job scope.

This way, you have an added edge, bringing more and higher value beyond your job scope.

Not sure how to start? An NTUC’s e2i (Employment and Employability) employability coach can help you out.

  1. Upgrade while you still have a job

We can’t stress this enough… Don’t wait till you’re displaced to take a course – it is harder to get back into the workforce then. Plus, you may have greater difficulty in trying to predict the principles of business success.

Consider taking up some soft skills – problem-solving skills and networking abilities may come in very handy at any point in your career.

  1. Adapt and change

We know it’s easy to let fear limit you into trying new things and ideas, but maybe it’s time to take back control. Make this your personal mantra: Be open to adaptability and upskill through continuous improvement.

After all, nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?

  1. Possess the three ‘Cs’ – Curious, Connected and Competent

Educate yourself beyond your job scope and access the best ideas and opportunities. These will eventually make you great at your job today and prepared for tomorrow’s jobs.

  1. Bite-sized learning is the future today

The current trend of learning is in short, bite-sized courses. These include on-the-go learning such as mobile applications containing learning materials and videos.

One example is the U LEAP (Learning Enabled through Active Participation) mobile application which has courses you can take in minutes. I’ve tried it, you should too.

  1. Learning is free – sort of

Information is readily available online and can be crowdsourced – just make sure they’re not fake news. Learning is increasingly community-based and leverages networks.

  1. The A, B, C, D, E of future skills
    • A for Agile: Be agile to stay relevant in a changing landscape.
    • B for Bold: Be bold and adopt a self-starter attitude. Don’t let fear get in the way.
    • C for Collaboration: Collaborate with industry experts, institutes of higher learning and other learners by tapping crowd-sourced community-based learning platforms.
    • D for Determination: Be resilient and have the tenacity to keep abreast of changes.
    • E for Enthusiasm: See the positive side of the future to understand where the opportunities lie.

Information in this article is derived from the Future Jobs, Skills and Training Forum 2018 Report, available for download.

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