Public sector workers should be given minimum hours of training – JCSA president

President of the Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA), O’Neil Grant, has suggested that public-sector workers should be given some minimum hours of training per year, enabling them to become more valuable to their organisations.

Mr Grant said this would inevitably lead to a more rounded workforce, where employers would not only see an increase in productivity but also invaluable returns on their investments.

“We champion education and training a lot within this organisation. One of the things we have been advocating for, and we are seeing signs that it may happen, is that every single worker, regardless of where you work and the job that you do, should be allowed some time for training per year,” he said.

“Every single worker, regardless of where you work and the job that you do, should be allowed some time for training per year”

— O’Neil Grant, President of the Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA)

“If that happens, what it means is that people will continue to upgrade their skills or be given new skills in the workplace where they can now broaden their horizon and be more indispensable to the public sector,” Mr Grant added.

“We are also hoping that the Government’s training budget will be housed in one central authority, which is the Institute for National Development. If this becomes a reality, we should be able to see other spinoffs from that, with the creation of places where persons can go and study,” the President said.

“When you make the investment to train a person for a particular skill you will then know what you have at your disposal to meet a certain demand,” he noted.

“People will continue to upgrade their skills or be given new skills in the workplace where they can now broaden their horizon”

— O’Neil Grant, President of the Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA)

The President said that in such a scenario, the entire country also stands to benefit as the Government would now be able to move workers into the specific skill areas in which they are needed and, especially, with the knowledge that they had been trained.

Mr Grant said that another option could also be the expansion of the online study programmes where persons do not have to travel very far distances and where they can be enrolled in courses at their own leisure.

He said that once the courses are completed and persons are accredited, then a profile is created where employers would have no problem finding persons to fill skilled positions.

“Rather than persons having to go through a lottery to vie for a position, they would be invited to participate in an interview based on their profile. We are hoping that as an association, we will be able to get this done,” Mr Grant added.