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THE INTERVIEW: Azzli Bin Jamain, WDA Director of Creative and Professional Services Division

F.Y. Teng | Nov. 14, 2013
Serving Up the NextGen Workforce—Singapore's continually enhanced National Infocomm Competency Framework and its role as a driver of the country's ICT industry.

Azzli Bin Jamain, WDA Director of Creative and Professional Services Division

The Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) and Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) worked with the Infocomm Technology (ICT) industry some years back to put together what eventually became the National Infocomm Competency Framework (NICF). Completed in 2009 and continually updated and enhanced since then, the NICF at present serves as Singapore's "national framework for training providers to develop and align their training programmes to" mapping 587 competency standards to 314 job roles in ICT, and complemented by resources for developing "job profiles, recruitment and interview checklists, performance assessment and appraisal frameworks, training roadmaps and in-house training curriculum."

Today, through the NICF,  Continuing Education and Training (CET) Partners, such as the Institute of Systems Science (ISS), Strategic Technology Management Institute (STMI), Lithan Hall Academy and Progreso Networks, more than 90 courses-categorised under: Software & Application; Telecommunications & Network; IT Services; Project Management; CIOs CTOs & IT Managers; Infocomm Security; and, Business Analytics-have been accredited under the Singapore Workforce Skills Qualifications by WDA and rolled out to the industry.

WDA's Director of the Creative and Professional Services Division, Azzli Bin Jamain, recently gave CIO Asia an update on the current state of Singapore's ICT workforce, and talked about where it needs to change, as well as the critical role that the NICF plays in driving the development of the workforce of the future.

One of the top concerns of CIOs is that to do with getting the right people with the right skills for their teams, and putting their teams together, particularly when it comes to new and promising technologies or technology areas or computing paradigms. What is your reading of the ICT human resource pool in Singapore today?
Azzli Bin Jamain: Based on the 2011 survey results by IDA on the ICT industry in Singapore, the number of jobs with the highest vacancies are in the areas of software and application development, network infrastructure architecture and engineering, and infocomm marketing and sales. And the reality is, there is demand for ICT manpower across most job sectors. The industry is growing and we need skilled ICT manpower to take on some of these jobs and roles.

As for specific technical skills or technology expertise needed in the industry, increasingly we're hearing much about skills required related to areas such as data analytics, cloud computing, enterprise mobility, cyber security and Big Data. We're also hearing a lot about emerging technologies and programming languages-HTML 5, Python, being some of them -and the need for professionals with such capabilities in the market.


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