Mindset around training changing, Deputy Mayor claims
We're moving into a mindset when people are willing to retrain rather than have a job for life.
That was the view of Kit Malthouse AM, Deputy Mayor for Business and Enterprise, who was speaking at the Economy Committee meeting in London this week.
Malthouse believes that older workers are more willing to update their skills nowadays, but criticised the "structural problem" that exists within the training and education system.
"We've moved away from the old Japanese model of having a job for life. We're moving to a new mindset when people are willing to retrain, sometimes at a later age - either at the company or externally," he said.
"Still, there's more that can be done. There's been a structural problem within our training and education system for a while now. We' ve allowed the people who are going through the system to decide what they want to do rather than employers taking centre stage and highlighting the skills that they are looking for. The constant complaint I hear is that I can't find what I need, which is why we're so big on the apprenticeship system and why we set such a high target.
"The employer defines what they need and they then set the apprentice up on a provisional basis - the individual then receives the training so by the end of the year they can join the company and do the job on a full-time basis.
"Interestingly though, foreign investors love coming to London because of the high density of graduates available so it's not all doom and gloom."
The assembly also discussed the issue of what skills were necessary to help people who had been made redundant get back into work.
Paul Fisher, district manager for East London Jobcentre Plus, stressed the importance of advice and informing the individual of all the options open to them.
"The key to this is to have working partnerships with key bodies so that we can pull a key response which can be tailored to each situation," he said.
"We have a dedicated support fund to help people with training and skills and help them get back into work after being made redundant. We normally go into the person's workplace before the redundancies are made and inform them of the opportunities they have. We want to help people move from one job to another seamlessly."