Workforce Development

Workforce development used to be considered the ‘poor cousin of education.’ It was thought of as something an employee would provide training in/for to produce more and better-prepared workers. Thought leaders have since pushed for a more expansive view and this is impacting on the way we undertake our training and development.

Workforce development is now considered to be more than a single programme or initiative. It is an ‘interconnected set of solutions’ to meet employment needs and it prepares workers with needed skills, emphasises the value of workplace learning and addresses the hiring demands of employers from the outset. The goal is to place workers in jobs where there are career development opportunities.  

In Aotearoa there are plenty of options to help you gain or improve skills. Some of the more common ones include:

  • Off-the-shelf training courses — one-size-fits-all courses run by training companies, e.g. a generic course on customer service
  • In-house training — usually done on the job, by a more experienced employee. Employees can learn at their own pace and apply new knowledge immediately
  • Job shadowing — involves one employee following another employee, like a shadow, to learn all the aspects of a job
  • Conferences, seminars, workshops and courses
  • Online courses — a cost-effective way of introducing new ideas and approaches. Especially useful when you need to train a large number of staff across different locations, e.g. to demonstrate compliance with health and safety regulations.

With the new year just around the corner it is good to assess what your workforce development needs are and who could provide that training. In our sector, Public Health related training is the priority. Check out the Massey University Level 5 certificate of Public Health, if you think you want to apply for  the next intake (and find out about the Fee’s Grant), email suaree@toitangata.co.nz and she talk with you about any queries you have.