Writer: Jonathan Cann Managing Consultant at JPCann Associates Ltd, Ghana
The Leitch Report on Skills Development in the United Kingdom introduced the concept of Voluntary Skills Pledge by leaders of businesses or organizations. The main purpose of this was to increase productivity, living standards and quality of services in both the private and public sectors.
The Skills Pledge is a voluntary commitment by corporate leaders to skills training and development of their workforce.
For a nation like Ghana to also compete with other emerging countries such as those in the advanced economies and the BRICS nations will require a massive skills development through training and development programmes that are relevant to the development needs of our nation. This will require that key stakeholders – Employees, Employers, and Government (through Ministries, Departments and Agencies) – make a commitment towards this goal.
Most advanced and emerging economies have attained such economic heights not through over reliance on primary resources but through the development of its human capacity which transforms the least resources into value added products. Ghana cannot rely on its extractive primary natural resources like gold, oil and gas without developing its complimentary human capacity that will harness its resources.
A cursory observation of the current trend in Ghana shows lack of commitment by corporate leaders to training and development of its workforce. The same can be said of public sector organizations.
- It was interesting watching a recent Parliamentary sub-committee on Public Accounts deliberations on the audited accounts of some MDA’s in Ghana. One thing was clear – lack of capacity building in critical areas such as financial administrations, Revenue mobilization, Income sustainability, efficient and effective work practices and leadership in most MDA’s. A casual look at the published financial statements of some financial institutions in Ghana also shows very little training spends on their workforce.
This trend needs to be reversed if the needed productivity, living standards and quality of service is to be achieved by corporate Ghana.
Is Corporate Ghana going to learn from the UK experience or come out with similar national agenda to train its workforce to make them more competitive in a global market?