(Photo Credit: Chan Chun Sing)
Well, if you didn’t know, (or maybe didn’t even care…) today was the first day of the NTUC’s 3-day National Delegates’ Conference (NDC).
But what’s so special???
The NDC is a culmination of the direction which the NTUC had set out to achieve at the last NDC in 2011. Similarly, at the end of this NDC, the NTUC will lay out its plans and direction which it will work towards for the next four years.
And why should you care?
You should care because, like it or not, at the end of the day the plans will affect you and me. The direction and plans which the NTUC will choose to take will very much revolve around the challenges which it will face in the coming years. These directions and plans also will affect the economic and social progress of the nation, which impacts workers.
Hence, NTUC Secretary General Chan Chun Sing shared with the media the 4 challenges which the labour movement faces in the coming years:
- Business environment has changed
- Employment landscape has changed
- Workers have changed
- Future of tripartism needs continuous work
1.) Business Environment has changed
As a result of the rapid product cycles, workers are beginning to change their jobs more frequently. Hence, there is a need to continually upgrade the skills of workers at a pace never seen before. Of course, this means that workers must be mentally prepared for such changes. However, with the changing of business environments at a fast pace, and with product cycles becoming more uncertain, it is likely that companies would invest less in training their workers.
2.) Employment landscape has changed
The proliferation of technology inadvertently displaces many lower-end jobs while many economies will experience a shortage of high-skilled workers.
Hence, it is necessary to continue up-skilling and re-skilling workers to prevent structural unemployment.
3.) Workers have changed
The younger generation – Gen Y – of workers today seek jobs that not only pay well, but also represents causes. Additionally, longer life expectancy also means more mature workers.
Freelancers and those who take on contract jobs are growing. Chan said that the labour movement must evolve to attract and serve the needs of these new groups of workers.
4.) Future of tripartism needs continuous work
The strong tripartite relations cannot be taken for granted, hence, the trust amongst them, must continue to be fostered, while a new generation of tripartite partners groomed.
According to Chan, details of the directions and plans will be shared with the media tomorrow, 28 October 2015, while a new 21-member NTUC Central Committee – the highest decision-making body – will be elected on Thursday, 29 October 2015.
Surely, every move that the labour movement takes will impact you and me, what’s there not to care about?