Minister for communications and information Josephine Teo has officiated the launch of Step IT Up, a programme aimed at allowing Singapore's public and private sectors to draw on non-technically trained individuals in Singapore for their tech talent and digital transformation plans.
Through Step IT Up's accelerated talent conversion programme, trainees will be able to receive the technical know-how, confidence and assurance of a career conversion to thrive in a competitive digital economy particularly as the industry sees mass layoffs. Speaking at the launch of the programme, Teo noted that Microsoft and Amazon have begun cutting a total of 28,000 jobs across the globe, citing slowing sales and a possible recession. Alphabet, Meta and Twitter have also announced layoffs in the past few weeks.
"The question, of course, on everyone's minds, is should we be worried about opportunities in tech? Is it foolhardy to continue encouraging our people to look at opportunities in tech?" asked Teo. She responded by saying that it was important to recognise that technology will continue to undergird the growth of our economies.
"Right-sizing the workforce for these tech companies is a painful exercise, particularly for the affected individuals and their families. But without a more disciplined approach to headcount growth, tech companies risked becoming more bloated and less agile," she said.
She continued by saying that besides tech, other sectors such as banking and logistics are still ramping up the hiring of tech talent, as such Singapore will continue to invest heavily in reskilling and upskilling in the tech arena.
"There is also recognition that technology will continue to undergird the growth of our economies," said Teo. Teo also highlighted other arenas which are important for development such as the green economy and pursuing sustainable goals, where technology is expected to play an increasingly important role.
Kiren Kumar, deputy chief executive for IMDA said, "Tech talent continues to be in strong demand as Singapore based companies drive their digital transformation strategies.”
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