Information technology and human resources professionals have advised young people to develop digital skills that will be relevant for future workplaces.
At a forum themed ‘Preparing for the future of work’ and hosted by Tek Experts Nigeria in Lagos, they identified challenges that could affect the world of work as well as credible and effective solutions.
The Country Manager, Tek Experts Nigeria, Lars Johannisson, explained that with a workforce of 85 million people, Nigeria was home to an enormous labour market.
According to him, these talents must be up-skilled and honed in order to compete successfully in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
He said, “The future of work is upon us and we must now take urgent actions at all levels – government, industry and individual – to ensure the Nigerian workforce always has the right skills and the ability to adapt in real time and succeed in the direction that work is going.
“Work as we know it is currently being disrupted and the advent of AI, and many technological innovations has changed the way we work and at Tek Experts, we recognise that this is the direction the world is taking, thus the need for adequate preparations to be made.”
According to Johannisson, Tek currently hires over 1,000 young IT talent, which makes it one of the largest and fastest growing IT companies in Nigeria.
“Therefore, we have a massive responsibility as a business to train our members of staff and we recognise the need to up-skill our talent, reinvigorate their work experiences and training so that they can not only deliver top-notch customer experiences, but also operate optimally in the place of work,” he said.
Panelist at the forum examined the changes that were in store for the workplace, the workforce, and the nature of work itself.
Guest speakers at the forum comprised Chief Executive Officer, Future Software Resources, Nkemdilim Begho; Senior Manager, People and Organisation, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Aruosa Osemwegie; Head of Start-Ups, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, Tosin Faniro-Dada, and Executive Director, mindthegap.ng / Author of Youthnomics, Tayo Olosunde.
Faniro-Dada noted that the future of work required convergence of skills, adding that employees needed to be self-driven to make significant progress in future workplaces.
For Begho, the culture employers create in an organisation had the tendency to drive skills acquisition and accelerate learning of workers.
Osemwegie, said, “The fact in Nigeria today, and this is what we’ve discussed at length at this forum, is that we urgently need to upgrade our education and our talent development programmes or else we risk sleepwalking into a future of work where a whole generation of workers lacks the right skills or the opportunity to adapt to change.
“This forum is the first step in a long line of things we need to do to prepare ourselves for the 4th Industrial Revolution.”