The Ups In Upskilling

Why upgrading yourself is important for you to stay in the employability game.

By Chris Ong      13 November 2021

As the legendary Bob Dylan sang, “The times they are a changin’”; we can’t hold back neither time nor tide, but we sure can keep up with.

Let’s get real – you need them skills to survive. For anyone (man, woman or even a rat in the race), anywhere (wilderness or jungle, but mainly our urban concrete one), anytime (especially now in the uncertain, COVID-afflicted situation).

Like the OS (operating system) of the latest tech gadget, you need be always upgrading yourself with new and improved skill sets to keep working well in the modern world. Not enough of a pull-or-push factor? We give you 4 other “whys” and 2 “wheres” for upskilling yourself below.

1. So that you stay relevant

Technology keeps evolving, people keep growing, the wheels of the work industry keep turning; it makes perfect sense to stay in touch with what’s going on.

Pragmatically speaking, learning new skills will not only help you remain relevant in your chosen profession or industry, but possibly even outside of your chosen field. It also makes sure you keep updated and suited up with what’s required of you in the ever-shifting job market.

Accumulating new skills and knowledge also means you get to stay afloat easier through unstable economic times, and swim faster with the currents of change for a better chance at success.

Not doing so could leave you trailing in the wake of your work contemporaries or even those wet behind the ears in the job hunt.

2. So that you get more income

We aren’t encouraging materialism here, but having more in your pocket does help you live life more comfortably.

Whether it’s because you want to buy a home to call your own, invest, save for your kid’s university fund, or collect more watches, wheels and wine (we won’t judge), you do need more money.

Picking up new skills can help you level up so as to increase your pay, earn that promotion faster or find a better-paying job easier. More skills, more income.

3. So that you can distinguish yourself from the rest

Not gonna lie, competition is high. More often than not, to land that dream job of yours means having to pit yourself against loads of other folk with similar aspirations as you.

But, like you, your fellow job-seeking peers might have equal or better educational qualifications, work experience, or even drive and passion. What would be a deal-breaker then?

Skills. It’s that one employment factor and advantage that you can hope to have to win over the rest.

Possessing more, extra, different, up-to-date or specialised skills does already help you stand out from the masses. Think of it as like an X-factor, but entirely something you can gain and learn.

4. So that you have more success in a career switch

There might come a time in your life where you have to or want to change your job, either because of a personal choice or circumstances.

That might be a jump to a completely dissimilar job or industry altogether, say, from an information security specialist to a digital marketeer.

It might be difficult, but entirely doable. It just boils down to you embracing a return to some form of schooling, so that you can equip yourself with the right skill set needed for you to move on into for your next, new career in life.

It may be be humbling or scary, but it can also be liberating and refreshing; new skills can lead to new job and life opportunities, and for further success to follow.

So where do you go to start upskilling?

If you aren’t quite sure how to begin, you can always start by referring to the helpful online resource portal that is MySkillsFuture. Here, you can find all kinds of information and courses to help you future-proof yourself.

Once you’re done, you might like to try using your SkillsFuture Credits, or apply for SkillsFuture Awards or SkillsFuture-funded courses at some institutions. Here are two: Management Development and Consultancy (MDC) at MDIS and Amity Global Institute.

For organisational- and business-minded folk, MDC, MDIS’s corporate training arm, is your foremost, viable study option.

Photo: MDC, MDIS

Expect a host of well-designed corporate training programmes in areas such as Business Management, Leadership, Service Excellence, Sales and Marketing, Communication and Innovation.

MDC, 501 Stirling Road, 148951, www.mdc.edu.sg; www.facebook.com/mdis.mdc

SAFRA members enjoy 15% off any regular-priced courses (applicable for SkillsFuture-funded courses) at MDC. Click here for more information.

At Amity Global Institute, it’s all about quality higher education, with a focus on industry-oriented management programmes.

Photo: Amity Global Institute

Collaborating with prestigious universities such the University of Northampton, the University of London, Teesside University and University for the Creative Arts, it offers a wide range of master’s, degree, diploma and foundation programmes as well as professional courses.

Think everything from business administration, management and digital marketing, to information technology and computing, to hospitality and tourism.

Amity Global Institute, 101 Penang Road, 238466, www.amitysingapore.sg; www.facebook.com/amity.singapore

SAFRA members can apply for a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) International Business Management (Top-up) Program (includes a paid internship) for $3,300 (U.P. $11,000) at Amity Global Institute. Click here for more information.