4 Ways Vocational Training Can Bridge the Skills Gap

Mary Joseph
Mary Joseph June 14, 2023
Updated 2023/06/14 at 2:27 PM
How vocational education can bridge skill gap

4 Ways Vocational Training Can Bridge the Skills Gap

Vocational education refers to the instruction that prepares individuals to work as skilled technicians or tradespeople in specific crafts or trades. It can also be seen as the type of education that readies people for the workforce.

Vocational education plays a vital role by providing students with practical skills that are in demand for employment within a relatively short timeframe.

Certain vocational programs can be completed within a few months, allowing students to acquire knowledge from their courses and gain hands-on experience through real work opportunities under the guidance of skilled mentors.

This unique combination not only enables students to establish valuable professional connections but also increases their chances of securing employment much quicker compared to traditional university students.

Furthermore, the enduring significance of trade skills and the consistent demand for skilled professionals further emphasize the importance of vocational education.

Why  Is Vocational Training Important?

As technology advances, consumer behaviour undergoes a transformation. The global pandemic has led to the emergence of new work methods, inevitably resulting in an increase in the skills gap. Employees will increasingly find themselves facing a disparity between the skills required for their original positions and those needed in their current roles.

This type of unemployment, known as structural unemployment, is particularly pronounced in industries that are at the forefront of technological innovation and constant change.

Addressing the skills gap can yield significant advantages. Companies that allocate resources to appropriate training programs experience twice the income per employee compared to those that do not invest.

Additionally, they enjoy profit margins that are 24% higher and generate a 6% greater return for shareholders.

However, for most companies that invest an average of $1,000 per employee per year, these benefits remain unrealized.

How  To Deliver Vocational Training That Can Bridge the Skills Gap

Lay A Solid Foundation:

Prior to constructing anything, it is essential to ensure the presence of a strong base.

How? Employ surveys to gain a deeper comprehension of the target audience for your project and generate learner profiles. This approach will assist in comprehending the factors that drive the staff, their levels of expertise, and their preferences when it comes to training.

Make It Available:

Address the requirements and preferences of learners by delivering training that is relevant, significant, pleasurable, and easy to access. One effective method is to utilize videos to engage your audience. Research shows that individuals remember 95% of information conveyed through video, in contrast to only 10% when reading text.

Make It Stand Out:

Engage the audience to enhance their information retention and duration, all while ensuring an enjoyable experience! One effective method is to incorporate storytelling, as facts integrated into a narrative are significantly more memorable, with a likelihood 20 times greater.

Achieve Proper Delivery:

To effectively counter the “forgetting curve,” it is crucial to carefully consider the complete implementation of the training process, encompassing the stages before, during, and after key learning moments. One effective approach is to embrace mobile technology, ensuring that learning materials are easily accessible from any location.

As learners increasingly depend on their mobile devices for communication purposes, and with a rising need for training outside traditional classroom settings, prioritizing mobile accessibility should be a primary focus when creating learning content.

Examine And Consider:

Tracking and measuring effectiveness against well-defined objectives becomes crucial when you begin with a clear vision of the end goal. The process involves identifying metrics, purpose, collection methods, benchmarks, and significant milestones at the outset. It is equally important to ensure that data collection does not disrupt the learner’s journey.

By utilizing insights derived from data, you can assess whether you have achieved your desired business outcomes and determine areas where enhancements can be made to elevate the training program.

How Vocational Training Can Bridge the Skills Gap

Inspires Creativity:

Vocational training offers a valuable advantage to those who acquire the necessary skills, as it enables individuals to tap into their creativity and stand out in various ways. Remarkable examples include astonishing cake designs, furniture creations, and fashion innovations.

Surprisingly, materials like African prints and Jeans are being transformed into unique shoes and bags, demonstrating the ingenuity of individuals with vocational training. Witnessing such extraordinary products has expanded my perception of what can be achieved using clothing materials.

Vocational training not only equips people with practical skills but also nurtures their ability to generate fresh ideas and invent new designs and products. Therefore, if you aspire to foster innovation, I highly recommend considering vocational training as a promising endeavour.

Promotes Multiple streams Of Income:

People pursue vocational skills for various reasons, and one significant motivation is financial gain. I know someone who operates a vocational training school where individuals are charged a fee. Additionally, there are individuals who secure contracts for baking wedding and birthday cakes, crafting shoes, tailoring school uniforms, or offering hair services like cutting or braiding for fellow students on campuses.

These endeavours undoubtedly generate income, which can be utilized to support oneself in higher education, assist parents and siblings, or even serve as capital for future business ventures if one chooses to build a career based on those acquired skills.

Boost Academic Qualification:

Some foreign educational institutions have admission criteria that go beyond academic grades. They consider additional qualifications and skills possessed by prospective students. For example, demonstrating proficiency in specific vocational training can be advantageous for individuals seeking admission to such schools.

A well-known example is Dr Benjamin Carson, the author of ‘THINK BIG,’ who obtained a position as a houseman at John Hopkins Hospital due to his passion and talent for classical music. It was during his time at that hospital that he successfully performed a significant operation on Siamese twins, which propelled his career and gained international recognition.

Acquiring vocational skills today can not only increase your chances of being accepted into higher education institutions but also enhance your prospects of securing your desired job in the future.

Boost Employability:

Youth who participate in vocational training tend to differ from their peers who do not engage in such activities. They acquire various skills and lessons on a daily basis, including humility, respect for elders, self-discipline, teamwork, diligence, determination, problem-solving, time management, communication, negotiation, ICT, and interpersonal skills, among others.

These teachings have a profound impact on their perspective on life and their interactions with others. Additionally, they are better equipped to face the challenges that arise during their time on campus and even after graduation.

Many students who lack exposure to real-life situations often struggle emotionally when confronted with even minor pressures or issues such as failing a subject, dealing with difficult roommates, managing academic workload, or facing financial constraints.

By undergoing vocational training, individuals can proactively develop the necessary strengths to effectively handle these challenges that arise during their college years and beyond.

Conclusion:

Vocational training refers to educational instruction that offers practical experience in specific fields like ICT, Agriculture, and Home Economics. It emphasizes hands-on learning, allowing individuals to utilize their cognitive abilities and manual skills to create and manufacture various objects or products. Engaging in vocational training brings numerous advantages for young people as they acquire valuable skills in their chosen area of expertise.

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