Microsoft Sri Lanka announced the launch of the Job Opportunities and Basic Skills
(JOBS) Training Program, targeting entry level skill development in the Information
Technology Enabled Services and Business Process Outsourcing (ITES-BPO) industry.
The initiative is a multi-stakeholder workforce development initiative by the Sri
Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) – the national chamber
for the IT and BPO industries – IDM Education Services, Infoshare Guarantee Limited
and Microsoft. The JOBS Training Program delivers skills training in Information
and Communication Technology (ICT), Workplace Communication and Soft Skills required
for selected entry level positions at leading employers including Amba Research,
Dialog Axiata, HelloCorp, HSBC, Innodata Isogen Lanka, MedSource and RR Donnelley.
JOBS is implemented through Unlimited Potential (UP), which spearheads Corporate
Citizenship at Microsoft. UP aims to bring the benefits of ICT to underserved communities
around the world by transforming education, fostering local innovation, and enabling
jobs and opportunities. Through Unlimited Potential, Microsoft has provided more
than US$350 million in cash and software grants to more than 1,000 community partners
to deliver skills training. Microsoft's community initiatives are designed to help
local businesses outline the competency requirements for new talent, evaluate the
skills of students ready for an entry level job and collaborate with local education
institutions to provide curricula and training.
“Building a skilled workforce benefits a country's economy by expanding its pool
of potential recruits,” explained Sriyan de Silva Wijeyeratne, Country Manager,
Microsoft Sri Lanka. “JOBS not only delivers skills training but goes a step further.
It orients training to match the requirements of BPO employers to build industry-specific
expertise and ensure better job outcomes for individuals. Job skills are essential
to developing careers and achieving success in virtually every sector of the economy.
Recognizing this fact Microsoft Community Affairs, together with SLASSCOM, IDM and
Infoshare, set out to build collaborative partnerships between BPO employers and
training providers. We are greatly encouraged by the industry commitment to delivering
sustainable job skills training.”
Mr Vajira Tennakoon, Singer’s Brand Group Manager for Digital Media stated, “We
have been working closely with Microsoft for the past four years and this last year
has been especially productive, as it has helped us grow as a company. With the
support of Microsoft we have advanced to a point where we could launch our new ‘X
Series’ notebook at a level on par with the notebooks in the international market.
Microsoft has given us a technical edge in the local market. The support Microsoft
offered was imperative in reaching this competitive level, and we can look forward
to seeing our relationship with Microsoft growing from strength to strength in the
years to come.”
JOBS articulates Microsoft's pledge to ensure individuals have the requisite skills
to succeed in the workplace through its delivery of customized training required
for six entry level jobs: Customer Service Executive, Data Entry Operator, Transcriptionist,
Accounts Associate, Legal Associate and Financial Analyst. The JOBS training is
both generic and specific to these identified jobs and involves the application
of existing knowledge and skills. Infoshare developed a skills framework using employer
feedback, forming the basis for JOBS training, assessment and certification. This
integration of skill requirements for the separate service areas in the BPO sector
is a first step in establishing an industry standard to ensure training and development
is in line with industry requirements.
JOBS is offered through IDM, Sri Lanka's first ever private sector training institute
and a leading provider of ICT education. Moreover the IDM study centers offering
the JOBS Training Course serve as job centers for individuals looking to enter the
outsourcing industry. Individuals applying for the course are provided comprehensive
job center services. IDM advertises the available jobs and the employers, screens
candidates, conducts training and assessments and directs successful trainees to
job interviews at BPO companies. Trainees are certified by IDM, Microsoft and SLASSCOM.
IDM's Colombo Campus will initially offer JOBS training, subsequently rolling out
the course at centers outside Colombo, including in Kandy and Negombo.
Sri Lanka's IT-BPO industry has set an ambitious goal of $1 billion in revenue to
be achieved by 2015, representing an almost ten fold target increase in annual earnings.
The global outsourcing industry is estimated to have realized only 10 per cent of
its addressable market and has the potential to accelerate Sri Lanka's socio-economic
growth by delivering new business and employment opportunities. However, to seize
these opportunities, Sri Lanka must increase the employability skills of its workforce.
“Sri Lanka ranked among the Top 30 emerging destinations for outsourcing in 2010
which bodes well for the future growth of the industry,” said Madu Ratnayake, Director
and Vice President of SLASSCOM. “Part of our expansion drive focuses on building
workforce capacities. JOBS is an important component in that effort: it delivers
job-focused training, while raising awareness about the industry, the employers
and the potential for long term, lucrative employment in one of the country's fastest
growing business sectors. We thank Microsoft, IDM and Infoshare for taking a positive
interest in the outsourcing industry and for contributing to the growth of the local
SLASSCOM acts as the catalyst for growth for Sri Lanka's IT and BPO industry by
facilitating trade and business, propagation of education and employment, encouragement
of research and innovation, and by supporting the creation of a progressive national
IDM is Sri Lanka's first ever private sector training institute and a leading provider
of ICT education for the past twenty-five years. IDM is affiliated to universities
in the UK, Australia and Canada and offers over 200 academic programs through a
network of over 55 educational centers. IDM is a Gold Partner for Microsoft training
programs in Sri Lanka.
Infoshare is a non-profit social enterprise working to create innovative technology
solutions to help international organizations, governments and civil society increase
the impact and effectiveness of their work. Infoshare provides organizations with
technology tools, training and technical assistance to help address socio-economic