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Continuous Learning in Working Life in Finland

Continuous Learning in Working Life in Finland 1500 999 Elias Luoma

The skill development system of Finland is one of the most successful systems in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The levels of literacy, as well as numeracy of its population, are the highest in the OECD, according to the OECD Survey of Adult Skills. This is because most of the people there continue to learn throughout their life. But to maintain the performances, the system will have to adapt to a quickly changing job market. Various factors like ageing, globalization and technological change are vastly affecting the jobs available in the market. So, it is important to address the challenges needed to manage the changing conditions.

report from OECD assesses the system of continuous learning in working life in Finland. This also includes employment-related learning, which is undertaken by adults to acquire skills for the future jobs. According to this report, Finland’s economic performance was lacklustre in the last decade but it regained momentum in 2018 and most of them have jobs now. But the new jobs are not similar to jobs before the crisis because of various factors. The employment in Finland is growing continuously but it is clear that new jobs are totally different than the previous ones and they need different skill-sets.

So, Finland has to strengthen the continuous learning system in response to the changing labour market. One of the chapters in this report provides information on financing, adult learning provision structure and current governance. It says that the cost of training is shared among the individuals, companies and government. The adult learning system has a wide range of learning opportunities, such as vocational education, general education, employee training, basic education, etc. But still, this will not be enough for the future job market.

Most of the current jobs require high-level skills, and digital skills have a lot of importance in working life. So, the skill development system in Finland should get future-ready. But there are various challenges according to a section in this report. It found that learning participation is low among people with fewer skills or those who are unemployed. A financial participation system encourages people to participate only in formal education and not in informal learning. And, the last one is there is limited or no alignment of education and training based on current job market needs.

The report suggests that if Finland gives access to non-formal learning opportunities, many key challenges will be addressed. But the training should be of high quality if non-formal training is to be made attractive to individuals.

The report also suggests the improvement of learning participation of individuals with low skills. This is because the job opportunities for these people have reduced over the last decade. So, Finland should support individuals with low skills by up-skilling or re-skilling them according to the job market needs. The report suggests that Finland should offer comprehensive guidance, advice and support to all the individuals with low skills. But all the information should be accessible under one roof to make guidance and information effective.

Finland has the best skill development system in the OECD. But technological innovation, AI and Automation will have a great effect on the future job markets. The adults will require new skill-sets if they want to retain their jobs. Finland’s skill development system will have to adapt to the changing job market conditions.

Individual Learning Accounts

Individual Learning Accounts 1999 1333 Elias Luoma

Due to the increase in types of work other than standard employment and fragmentation of careers, new challenges have come up for training policies. Individual learning accounts received a lot of attention from the policymakers as they make the training flexible and portable from one employment status or job to another. A report from OECD examines past individual learning accounts based on the review of case studies and existing literature and helps in developing guidance for the policymakers.

Significantly, the only approach that can boost training participation from the individuals in the changing world of work is the French ‘Compte Personnel de Formation’. And, it is the only learning account that has been implemented. This report from OECD looks at the individual learning schemes (ILS), including individual learning accounts, individual savings accounts and vouchers.

The OECD report focuses more on Individual Learning Schemes. These are nothing but training schemes attached to individuals. The training can be undertaken at any time as they are always at the disposal of the individuals. There are three kinds of such schemes:

  • Individual Savings Accounts for Training- In this type, the resources can be gathered by the individuals for further training. The individuals also get various kinds of support from public authorities.
  • Individual Learning Accounts- In this type, the individuals can accumulate the rights for training over a period of time. The resources will only be used if the individuals undertake training and pay for it.
  • Voucher Schemes- In this type, the training is supported through government payments to the individuals. Most of the individual learning schemes are called individual learning accounts but they function as vouchers.

The objective of individual learning schemes is to increase choice and responsibility of an individual. Another common objective of all schemes is to encourage access for people, who are less skilled, have low or no access to training or working in small enterprises. All the individual learning schemes have some rules and regulations on the training type that individuals can choose. Individuals can choose formal training or non-formal training.

The report has given some conclusions after analyzing various individual learning schemes. According to them, if the policymakers want effective participation of people in training, they need to keep it simple. Many countries have already simplified the processes involved. Financial support should also be higher for promoting participation. It is important to reduce the deadweight losses and this can be done by targeting individuals or groups. This will also decrease the bias against low-skilled individuals. They should also take measures in increasing the participation of under-represented groups. Many schemes don’t consider training provided by the employer. The link between both types of training should be considered. Quality assurance should also be reinforced in training-related schemes.

Individual learning schemes can increase the access to training for individuals, who get less training from their employer or don’t have access to training, by giving training rights to them. ILS, by attaching training rights to workers instead of jobs, even make training rights transferable between jobs.

What is Data Science?

What is Data Science? 2098 1399 Elias Luoma

With everyone integrating digital technologies wherever possible, structured as well as unstructured data is getting generated at a rapid pace. The organizations can also store large amounts of critical data at very low cost because of evolving technologies. Now, this data has to be analyzed to get the desired results. This iswhere individuals use data science to find trends, analyze, manage and process data and generate insights that can be used by an organization.

So, what is Data Science?

Data Science is a field of study that puts together programming skills and knowledge in mathematics and statistics for extracting insights from the structured as well as unstructured data. It involves recording and storing the data and then maintaining and analyzing it effectively.Data science is one of the most important fields in any organization. Due to the adoption of digital technologies involving AI, machine learning and big data, datascience is in high demand as a career choice. Data scientists use their skills in technology and social science to analyze data and make actionable plans for companies by using industry knowledge and contextual understanding.

But with technology evolving rapidly, the successful data scientists know that just analyzing data and programming skills are not enough; they have to master the data science life cycle for maximizing the returns for their organization

Data Scientist

Data scientists have immense technical skills and can make complex algorithms to analyze and organize data that is used for answering questions and driving strategies in the organizations. They should be result-oriented and curious along with having industry knowledge and communication skills so that they can explain technical results to the non-technical counterparts. They should also have a strong background in linear Algebra and statistics in addition to programming knowledge for building and analyzing algorithms.

Reasons to Become a Data Scientist

Companies collect lots of data easily from customers but after collecting, they are unable to manage and analyze the information. Data scientists can help companies grow quickly by analyzing and categorizing the data. Data scientists are not only needed by big tech companies but also by small industries as more and more data is easily accessible.

In the digital industry, data scientists are in huge demand as companies want a professional to understand the data they collect from their customers. With the help of data scientists, they can check how effective a marketing campaign is, tap into new markets, reduce costs and also, launch a product based on the analysis of data. Data science will only become more and more popular as our world adopts newer technologies and integrate AI and Machine Learning.

Citation: https://datascience.berkeley.edu/about/what-is-data-science/

Getting Skills Right: Future-Ready Adult Learning Systems

Getting Skills Right: Future-Ready Adult Learning Systems 2064 1376 Elias Luoma

In many countries, population ageing, new technologies like AI, machine learning and big data, automation and globalization are changing the way the world is working. A new report from OECD– “Getting Skills Right: Future-Ready Adult Learning Systems” argues that these aspects affect the jobs available and the skill-sets these jobs require. The adult learning systems have to be ready if the companies and individuals have to reap the benefits of changing working conditions. This is necessary to help people develop their skills according to the changes in the world of work.

Most of the people, who are affected by the changes, are already working, so the development systems have a key role in up-skilling or re-skilling the people. But there remains a main challenge and that is adult learning systems cannot be defined. There are various ways for acquiring the skills, from basic education through the workplace to liberal adult education. So, future-proof learning systems require improvement in the readiness of the system and coordination between them for preparing people for the future.

According to a survey, in OECD countries, just 41% of people take part in training in a year. Besides that, people, who are unemployed for a long time, have fewer qualifications or with the risk of losing the job due to automation, are less probable of participating in the training. OECD further analyzed that among people, who take training, 14% wants to learn further but couldn’t due to some reason. And, out of one-fifth of people, who do not take any training, are willing to take it. Some of the reasons given by people for lack of participation in training include lack of time, work pressure at the job, no support from the employer, or financial issues.

The report emphasizes the importance of training to individuals so that they can acquire the skills needed for the job market. In some European countries, funds are collected for training and then distributed to fund employee-training. But along with that training, employers should also provide learning opportunities so that individuals can develop important skills needed for progress in their careers.

There are various issues in upgrading adult learning systems and those should be solved quickly so that people acquire new skills to adapt to the future of work. The report from OECD suggests some measures that can be taken to tackle this problem. First, the effectiveness and quality of training have to be improved in all the countries. Companies can help people to make choices about training. The benefits of adult training have to be promoted effectively and support for the unemployed and low skilled people should be offered. The employers should be encouraged to contribute towards adult training programs through tax incentives and training levies. These measures, if taken, will definitely enhance the skills of adults and help them in the changing future of work.

The Future of Women at Work

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In the last few years, technological advances, automation, AI and machine learning have caused a lot of changes in the job market. As Artificial Intelligence and other digital technologies are integrated into almost every aspect of work, the employees will have to adjust their plans and adopt new skills and strategies to remain ahead in the curve. The adoption of automation and AI will change the way many of us work. While it offers new job opportunities to everyone, women are the ones who will face new challenges.

According to the McKinsey Global Institute report, between 40 and 160 million women in the world will need to change occupations by 2030. If women need to weather this disruption of jobs, they will have to learn new skills and become tech-savvy. But women often face barriers and they will need support for moving forward in the work.

A new report from McKinsey Global Institute, “The future of women at work: Transitions in the age of automation”, finds if women can make these transitions smoothly, they can be more productive and better paid. If they do not succeed, they will have to deal with the growing wage gap.

This new research explores patterns in jobs gained, jobs lost and jobs changed for women due to the adoption of automation. According to it, men and women face a similar scale of job gains and losses but these happen in different areas. But seeing the past technological disruptions, women might be at lesser risk of getting displaced by automation compared to men. There will also be job gains because of automation. Women in most countries may gain jobs at a higher rate compared to men, based on the current share of occupations and sectors held by them.

Women’s jobs are likely to suffer from partial automation than getting completely displaced by automation. As the workplaces adopt newer technologies and some of the activities get automated, the ways women work will change even if they remain in current jobs. Because of partial automation, the lives of working women could change. Certain skills will become more important and more women can work flexibly.

Technology can help in breaking down many barriers that women face and it create new opportunities for them. But women are far behind than men when it comes to access to technology, jobs in the technology sector and skills to use technology. Due to this, women might miss out on the benefits of digital innovation. Men and women will have to work together closely in the future of work. It is important that women participate in technology creation as it has various benefits.

Lots of challenges are needed to be addressed. Women should have access to basic technology, such as the internet as well as mobile technologies and their digital skills should be developed. Also, their fear of lack of internet and digital skills has to be addressed. When these things are considered and women develop their skills, the future will have lots of new opportunities for them.

Hydrid jobs

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With the job market getting disrupted due to automation and AI, it is necessary to combine skills and move up the career ladder. The job market might be booming right now but this can quickly change in the coming years. The expansion of digital technologies is rapid and this has transformed the character of jobs needed to sustain in a competitive environment. The acceleration of automation is eliminating the jobs that are performed by humans. The jobs that remain in future will be the combination of separate positions. So, if you have to retain the jobs or get new opportunities, you need to learn new skills.

Burning Glass Technologiesprepared a report, which argues that hybrid jobs are the future. Companies are paying around 20%-40% more for hybrid roles compared to traditional counterparts. Hybrid roles are also growing at double therate of overall jobs. For a matter of fact, learning a single skill can increase your salary by around 40%.

But what are Hybrid jobs? How building hybrid skill sets will help you in a rapidly evolving job market?

Hybrid jobs are specialized roles that demand multiple skills sets in unrelated fields. These skills are in multiple disciplines and are often a combination of non-technical and technical skills. According to The Hybrid Job Economy report from the Burning Glass, some of the hybrid jobs are new but some jobs already exist and are merged to form new roles. But depending on the organization and jobs, the hybrid roles may vary. For instance, a company will not look for administrative staff, who can only take calls, maintain schedules and help visitors. Rather, companies need staffs, which have a hybrid skill set, which includes updating company websites, social media, making spreadsheets and designing presentations.

Many organizations are looking for a hybrid skill set, which is the combination of completely opposite skills. Automation will have a greater effect on the job market. As a result, job seekers will have to learn different skills to reduce their chances of getting unemployed. The companies are ready to pay a higher salary to those with multiple skill sets. It has become important to be successful in the digital world.

No one has to go to school or university again to take advantage of the future jobmarket. To learn new skills, so that you remain competitive in the market, you can take online certificate programs. There are so many websites providing theseprograms either for free or nominal price. You can also take online courses to addto your skill sets and enhance your resume to show the employers that you have hybrid skills and are ready to adopt to newer technologies.

Reskilling through Online Courses

Reskilling through Online Courses 2021 1345 Elias Luoma

The digital technologies such as AI, machine learning and robotics are growing and changing so rapidly that many workers worldwide are finding themselves either under-qualified or under-skilled. McKinsey Global Institute report says that by 2030, 375 million jobs would be displaced by automation. According to their study, about half of the activities done by workers in certain categories could be automated. This is something that is worrying majority of the workforce across the globe. If you want to meet the demands of jobs requirements by companies, you need to reskill yourself.

Reskilling means learning new skills entirely, which may not be relevant to the skills you have currently. For example, if a graphic designer left the job and went to learn hairdressing and make-up, it would be called reskilling. This is because he is learning something entirely irrelevant to his job. Reskilling teaches a person new skills so that he can adapt to the changing needs of the job market. When an individual gets an opportunity to reskill, he can easily change the career path. With the technology evolving faster, reskilling can help a person progress faster in the sectors that are expanding. Because of automation, the number of people, who require a “reskill”, will only increase as time passes.

Online Courses

The best way to reskill yourself is through online courses. Thanks to internet technology, you can take any online course from the comfort of your home and office. There are various online courses, which can help you to gain knowledge of the latest technologies available. According to a study, the online platforms that impart skills and knowledge are seeing 35 percent growth in terms of enrolments. The industry experts suggest that the job roles require the workforce to upgrade the skills constantly due to evolving technologies such as Big data, AI, robotics and machine learning.

Learning from big universities is now possible on your smartphones at reasonable prices. Due to this, there is a great demand for online courses across the globe. Some of the courses that are in great demand on online platforms include data science, AI, blockchain, digital marketing, etc. Learning new courses online is very simple and anyone can learn and reskill themselves by watching videos and attending live lectures. Initially, online education providers introduced only short-term courses, ranging from four to six weeks. But after seeing the demand, they started offering one-year and two-year degree courses.

These days, online learning platforms are also tying up with corporate companies. These companies want to own flexible modules for their employees. They want their employees to upskill or reskill so that the employees can fit into a new position if the older one becomes redundant. Online reskilling programs are very beneficial to the people as they can save time and energy of an individual by not attending the classes physically. The online training program equips the employees with advanced skills so that even if there is job displacement due to automation, they can adjust to a newly created role.

What Jobs Will be Gone by 2030?

What Jobs Will be Gone by 2030? 800 529 Elias Luoma

There is a considerable amount of anxiety among people across the globe. Thesedays, people are talking about automation, its effects on the future of work and whether their skills would be enough to keep jobs in the ever-changing scenarios.The advanced digital technologies like robotics, machine learning and AI have helped in automating various tasks. Automation increases efficiency, productivity, safety and reduces the chances of errors and hence helps in economic growth. But AI and automation will also affect jobs, employment and the overall nature of work. The greater concern of people is which jobs will have high potential when most of the work will be automated in future.

Many activities in the present scenario could be automated by 2030. Even the job-matching sites like Monster and LinkedIn are already changing the way people look for work. Many workers provide their services on digital platforms such as Fiverr, Upwork, Etsy, etc. They are showing to the world how work could be undertaken and from where it could be done. Along with the potential benefits, these shifts create confusion among the business leaders, policymakersand even the workers.

McKinsey Global Institute found that almost 50 percent of the activities for which the people are paid can be automated using the demonstrated technologies. In 60 percent of businesses, almost one-third of the activities would be automated. This implies transformations at the workplace and changes for the workers. The feasibility of automation is important but that is not the only aspect that will affect the pace of automation adoption. Other factors that will influence the adoption include the advantages of automation, cost of developing automation solutions and deploying them and labor market dynamics. A research estimates that between zero and 30 percent of hours worked can be automated by 2030, depending on the pace of automation adoption.

However, the effect of automation on employment differs in terms of occupation and sector. Activities that are more vulnerable to automation are those that are physical and carried out in predictable environments. This includes preparing fastfood, operating machines, goods movers and loaders, agricultural field workers, ground cleaners, dishwashers, etc. A few categories of activities like data collection and data processing can be done faster and better with the help of machines. When these activities are automated in future, many jobs, such as accounting, property paperwork and back-office works would be displaced. However, when these tasks are automated, employment would not decline in these occupations, rather the workers will be performing new tasks.

Jobs that are less susceptible to automation include those, in which an individual has to apply its expertise, manage people or interact socially. Tasks, in which machines cannot match human performance, are less vulnerable to automation. Occupations in unpredictable environments including plumbers, baby sitters, gardeners, etc. will also not see much automation by 2030. This is because they cannot be easily automated and also, these jobs do not command higher wages, making automation not so attractive business proposition.

Many people are concerned about the employment opportunities in future. The workers are worried whether enough jobs will be available once the automation takes over the tasks from them. Technology creates employment shifts but it alsocreates new jobs. But the workers have to upgrade their skills in order to sustain in the market.

Setting Educational Goals

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Goal setting should not be underestimated and is important if you want to be successful in the long run. This is because it would be difficult to reach a destination without defining where it is. Goals will take you forward in life and help you achieve your dreams. It is important for everyone to understand the significance of setting goals and apply that knowledge to be successful in life.

In education, goals help students in achieving their academic success. By settinggoals, you can achieve realistic objectives. By identifying the goals and the reason for achieving them, you can determine what skills, strength and motivation are required for achieving that goal. Setting education goals will also motivate you to develop strategies, which will allow you to perform at the required level. An individual can begin with setting small goals, like learning a topic by the end of the week. When you continue to achieve smaller goals, it will become a habit. Then, you can plan long term goals for achieving the success you dreamt for.

Reasons Why Setting Goals is Important

Goals let you measure Progress

When you set goals, you can easily measure your progress as you have a benchmark or fixed point with which you can compare your progress with. For instance, a student makes a goal to complete 20 topics of a subject in ten days. In between, he forgets how many topics he has finished and how much is left. Instead of panicking, that student counts the number of topics he has already completed and determines his progress instantly and knows how much he has to finish in the days left.

Goals Motivate You

Your goal is the root of all the inspiration and motivation you have felt in your life. When you make a goal, you have something to get excited about. Every day when you get up, you will have your goal to focus on. You will have to put 100% dedication, hard work and effort to achieve that goal and these are the things that will motivate you every day.

Goals will keep you Undistracted

Distraction is the main reason why many people do not achieve what they want. But when you set goals, you have mental boundaries and you stay away from distractions that come your way. You always stay focused on the tasks that will help you in achieving your goals. Regardless of what comes your way, your goal will always keep you away from it.

Setting educational goals will always help you learn something new in a specific timeframe. In this era of automation, it is very important to keep learning and getting equipped with new skills and knowledge. Without any goal, you will keep wandering through life and fail to achieve what you are capable of. With a goal orplan, you will be responsible for your actions and efforts. It might also encourage people to develop problem-solving techniques and critical thinking skills, which will help them sustain in this evolving economy.

The Big Five Personality Test

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Everyone responds in a unique manner to the same circumstances. Have you ever thought what can be the reason for it? Behavior can vary from person to person and it can be due to either personality traits or environmental factors. Many people have researched the reason why a person behaves the way he does. There are many models and theories on personality traits that separate people on the basis of their personality. One such model that exists is The Big Five Personality model, also called the OCEAN. This model gives the idea that five dimensions make up the personality of a human.

The Big Five Personality Test is the most commonly used and accepted model for determining the traits of an individual. These traits are determined after the study of an individual’s responses to personality queries. The researchers can see the responses from people to different personality items by using factor analysis technique and then think about summarizing an individual. After looking at the samples of people around the world, they came to the conclusion that there are unlimited personality variables but only five are unique in explaining the answers about personality questions. They are Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness and Neuroticism.

Openness to Experience

Openness is a trait that describes how much an individual is open to new ideas. This differentiates people, who are imaginative and creative from people, who are practical and conventional. People who have a high score in Openness are creative, intellectual and adventurous. They play with ideas and discover novel experiences. People, who score low in Openness, are practical, traditional and focused.

Conscientiousness

This personality trait describes an individual’s level of persistence and self-discipline. The level of Conscientiousness shows whether a person will be successful at work or will be addicted to bad habits. People with a high score in this trait tend to be curious and stubborn. Low Conscientiousness people are flexible but lack reliability and are tend to be in their comfort zones.

Extraversion

Extraversion describes the tendency of an individual to get attention from others and create energy from external means. Extravert people like to enjoy with people and are always looking for attention. People with a high score will be enthusiastic and action-oriented. On the other hand, introverts don’t like to engage socially and conserve their energy. They like to be alone and don’t need much stimulation and attention.

Agreeableness

Agreeableness trait shows how much a person will prioritize other’s needs over their needs. People with a high score like to get along with other people and are kind, generous and trustworthy. Low agreeableness individuals are competitive and challenging and often seem untrustworthy.

Neuroticism

Neuroticism relates to a person’s emotional stability. It measures the tendency of a person to respond to negative emotions such as sadness, fear, guilt, shame and anxiety. High scorers are vulnerable to stress and negative emotions and often emotionally reactive. People with a low score can handle stress easily and are tend to be emotionally stable, calm and free from negative feelings.

With companies needing highly skilled and emotionally stable workers, the HR professionals are often seen to use The Big Personality test for placing employees in their company. If these professionals have a deeper understanding of personality behaviors, they can help their company to have a positive and productive work culture.