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, Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development Saskatchewan’s Submission
Career Development requires a concerted effort on the part of everyone to be successful. This involves a shared responsibility of individuals, family, service providers, employers and the community-at-large. When these sectors work together co-operatively the benefits to the individual and society are significant. In Saskatchewan, our preparation for participating at the National Symposium has reinforced the belief that it is essential that a broad-based partnership of committed organizations at the provincial level exist in order to effectively address the needs, challenges and opportunities identified. It is also critical that we acknowledge up front that we have some excellent partnerships already in place and that we can build on these partnerships to expand our efforts to improve the development and delivery of career services and programs on a province-wide basis. In preparation for the National Symposium on Career Development, Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development, a round table with key stakeholders was convened in April 2003 to begin discussions and planning for the Symposium. It was later determined that the information for the pre-symposium paper from Saskatchewan would be based upon feedback from a mail-out survey containing questions suggested by the Canadian Career Development Foundation [CCDF (with a few modifications – see Attachment 1)]. Comments were solicited from the learning sector, labour, business, industry, community-based organizations, several provincial government departments and Human Resources Development Canada-Saskatchewan Region. It was also planned that the findings from the survey could be used for future province-wide strategic planning in career development. Feedback from the survey was summarized to present commonalties among respondents. A Saskatchewan career development profile is included to provide a broad context for the report. The section on unique contextual features of Saskatchewan is important because it provides background for some of the issues and challenges presented later in this paper.
Profile of Career Development Services in Saskatchewan
In Saskatchewan, career development course offerings are part of the K-12 curriculum for Grades 6-9 (Career Guidance) and 10-12 (Career and Work Exploration, and Life Transitions). As well, career development competencies are integrated in the more than forty (40) Practical and Applied Arts courses and the English Language Arts curricula. Career development competencies, based on the Blueprint for Life/ Work Designs, are being infused across all subject areas over the next few years. The Saskatchewan Job Chart, Saskatchewan Job Futures, career fairs, career skills portfolio implementation, and the use of career tools and supports such as RealGame, SaskNetWork, and Career Information Hotline provide additional resources for students, teachers, and counsellors. Job coaches and guidance counsellors provide information on career pathways and supports for students to assist in school-to-work and school-to-school transitions. The post-secondary component of the education system also provides career development. The transition from school to work is supported by the postsecondary system through career counselling, supporting learner’s identification of knowledge, skills and attributes, providing portfolio development support, and identifying and making links with employers of interest. However, it needs to be acknowledged that continuous articulation between the secondary and postsecondary education systems is important to address issues arising from the movement of students through the education system and into employment. The provincial government through the Canada Saskatchewan Career and Employment Service Centres (Can-Sask Centres) also provides career development services to adults. Twenty centres throughout the province provide career, training and employment services and supports that facilitate transitions between learning and work. Services include assisted self-serve resource centres, individual counselling, workshops, employment/training programs and employer services. The SaskNetWork web site provides an online source for career information on Job search (including job postings) job matching, career planning, education and training opportunities, labour market information, selfemployment options and general workplace information for employees and employers. The public side of career development provides another major source of supports and services. Outside of the learning and provincial government sectors, there are various community-based organizations (serving immigrants, Métis, First Nations, persons with disabilities, etc.) and private agencies/organizations, that provide a range of career and employment services. There is some concern amongst career development practitioners, policy makers and individuals that services and programs in the province lacks cohesion, widespread accessibility by all audiences, systematic monitoring and defined outcomes. There is no central point through which planning and information sharing is done that could facilitate joint leadership in career development and assist service providers in moving in a common direction and creating a career development culture for continuos improvement. The gaps in career development services suggest that Saskatchewan lacks a, coherent, broad-based “system” of career development. A vision of a 2
in that personal and vocational skills constantly change and expand during a lifetime in response to career changes and emerging opportunities. which encompasses the K-12 and post-secondary education systems. exploring and experiencing factors that influence various aspects of a person’s life. The knowledge. The remainder of the population is distributed in a handful of relatively small cities (25%) and rural areas (37%). Services and supports in career development and employment are limited to these larger centres with rural areas being largely under-served. It is seen as encompassing the development of the whole person. This definition will need to be flexible enough to gain the support of all stakeholders. skills and attitudes that evolve through this path of discovery enable planning and decision making not only about work exploration and related employment and vocational choices but also about personal management and life/work skills. 3 .comprehensive system may begin to take shape within a future career development strategy being developed in Saskatchewan for the learning sector. Reaching consensus on a common definition of career development will be a challenge that needs to be addressed in any proposed career development strategy. The second view of career development defines it as a lifelong process of becoming aware of. To be effective. The traditional definition of career development is focussed on the goal of preparing for the world of work. The population of Saskatchewan hovers around one million and a significant proportion of people live in the two major urban centres of Regina and Saskatoon (38%). this strategy will need to engage many stakeholder groups and be responsive to diverse needs. Unique Contextual Features in Saskatchewan Saskatchewan is characterized by a number of distinctive features that have significant influence over the nature of career development services and supports. but places a critical emphasis on gaining the skills and experience for work in order to find one’s vocation in life. Definitions varied along a continuum that started from a more traditional vocational approach focusing on immediate educational and occupational/ employment choices towards a broader approach that also included the development of longterm career management skills that could be applied over a lifetime. The primary goal of this approach is directed to improving one’s employability for obtaining meaningful work. Definition of “Career Development” The Saskatchewan Career Development Services and Supports Survey asked respondents to provide a working definition of career development. Career development is part of lifelong learning.
with an average population growth of 0. Saskatchewan’s population has remained relatively constant. In Saskatchewan. the population in the "baby boom" age group (currently aged 40 to 54) will continue to increase for five to ten years. Saskatchewan Post-Secondary Education and Skills Training: January 2000. The group of people aged 55 to 64 will increase. 1 The labour force in Saskatchewan will be affected by these population projections. 1 4 . as there will be fewer workers available to replace retiring workers. the agestructure of our population is changing. Saskatchewan’s population is ageing and this is evidenced in the projected population trends. p. This is one of the lowest rates of population growth in the country. While our total population has experienced very little growth. Younger age groups – those aged 15 to 24 and 25 to 39 – will experience a slight increase in their populations. and then begin to decline.1% per year. Also. First Nations people account for a larger proportion of natural population growth in Saskatchewan and will represent a larger proportion of our total population over the coming years.46. its demographic characteristics have been changing. Saskatchewan Labour Market Trends Report.000 people per year. or the equivalent of just over 1.Over the last twenty years.
p. 2 Significant efforts will be required to position young Aboriginal people to compete in the market place with its increasing demands for educational attainment and acquisition of skills.96 0 25.Total Potential Labour Force (assuming constant participation rates of Registered Indian population) Registered Indian Labour Force 1998 519. and for all net population growth by 2031. Sixty percent of employers have less than five employees and an additional twenty-nine percent of employers have less than 20 employees. and the size of the labour force in Saskatchewan is expected to peak between 2008 and 2013. including First Nations and Métis peoples. it is limited to hiring. Saskatchewan has pride in the unique relationship it has forged with the Aboriginal community. most small employers have few resources to provide this kind of benefit. But even with increased labour market participation of Aboriginal people and individuals from other disadvantaged groups. with many Aboriginal people living in isolated areas of the province.3 Another distinctive feature in Saskatchewan is the predominance of small employers in the private sector. persons with disabilities and immigrant and refugee persons. The partnerships established with the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN). the projected rate of growth in the labour force slows substantially in the coming years.097 However.38 5 7 1 2018 518. Because of the large proportion of small employers in this province.186 39. Many employers have limited. there are additional challenges to be addressed in career management associated with geographic location.167 Projected 2008 2013 536. partnerships with other First Nations groups. like all other provinces and territories in Canada. 3 Knowledge Matters: Skills and Learning for Canadians. Saskatchewan. firing and remuneration. 2 5 .74 530. The rapidly growing Aboriginal population provides the greatest opportunity to build the work force of the future.61 1 59. Government of Canada: February 2002. While larger employers offer systematic career development within their organizations. if any human resource development capabilities. Employers will need to draw upon the resources of all Saskatchewan people and find ways of attracting and retaining workers with a variety of backgrounds and experiences.896 2003 531. Also.46. If there is in-house human resource supports. Immigration is anticipated to account for all net labour force growth in Canada by 2011.49 0 32. will increasingly have to turn to immigration to address its labour market shortages and other demographic challenges.962 49. Saskatchewan Post-Secondary Education and Skills Training: January 2000. this proportion is estimated to increase to about 29% by 2015. Saskatchewan Labour Market Trends Report. While an estimated 8% to 12% of new labour market entrants (15 to 24 years of age) are currently Aboriginal. very few workers have support available for career development.
Job Start Future Skills. has created many successful programs and initiatives in the province. Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). the Northern Labour Market Committee. All stakeholders must be engaged in a process that is meaningful and is based on common goals and an action plan that is mutually agreeable. the Canada-Saskatchewan Career and Employment services delivery system. Meaningful consultation. They include the following: Individualized Services Making sure that delivery is based upon a balance of individual and social needs requires that supports and services are individualized rather than generic. The key to success when undertaking these programs and initiatives and maintaining their long-term sustainability lies in the commitment to incorporating the principles of partnership to obtain stakeholder buy-in and support. Collaboration and capacity building are core principles. Some generic kinds of programs would still be useful but should be designed after careful research into current and real needs of the client and service provider populations. the Northern Teacher Education Program (NORTEP) for northern Saskatchewan. Strengths in Saskatchewan One of the key strengths in Saskatchewan is the collaborative approach used to plan and undertake program development and other initiatives. are all examples of the partnerships that Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST) and the Universities have with the Aboriginal community are all valued and advance the career development of Aboriginal people. Gabriel Dumont Institute (the only Métis owned and operated post secondary institution in Canada). Important Issues in Career Development There were a number of issues that were identified by respondents that are considered important in building effective career development services. the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission. the SchoolPLUS initiative. The approach of addressing the specific barriers of the client is more costly and requires greater expertise. joint federal-provincial career and labour market product development projects such as Saskatchewan Job Futures and Sask Job Chart Aboriginal partnerships. Some notable examples are: K-12 curriculum development. 6 . linked with collaborative responses to real needs. Service Provider Training The training of personnel in a wide array of career development and knowledge competencies is a critical component of successful program and service delivery. and countless others.the First Nations University of Canada. Sector Partnerships Program. but results are more long term. the Saskatchewan Labour Force Development Board.
Delivery and effective use of career information is a critical area that needs significant improvement in Saskatchewan. as well as many outstanding Saskatchewan products. reliable and current. Preferably career information should be available in a variety of formats including print. it does not reflect the value of trades training. is accessible to 60% of Saskatchewan which provides an excellent vehicle for information dissemination. computer and the Internet. In some settings. It must be provided in a timely fashion and from a wide variety of sources. Unfortunately. Information obtained through experience is also invaluable and people require exposure to real job situations to assist in the career exploration process. Fortunately there has been considerable work done recently at a national level to develop Canadian Guidelines and Standards for career practitioners. they do not always know how to use them effectively. userfriendly. Standards and Guidelines for Quality Services In general in Saskatchewan there is the absence of standards and guidelines governing the delivery of career and employment services. this linkage has proven to be effective. These standards will need to be examined in the province and if they are deemed to be of value actions planned to see how to implement them. Service providers and point persons for information dissemination are not always adequately trained and they need to be given the time for professional development. Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) 7 . information on educational opportunities is too frequently focussed on university level education and. those who could benefit from them do not always know these products. a high speed Internet and wide area network. For the most part. standards cover a broad spectrum of career development components including: access to services. resource support and accountability. For example. Dissemination and Effective Use of Information Access to information is central to effective career management.Standards and guidelines for this development will be essential for both career development practitioners and managers. as a result. In some circumstances. CommunityNet. Typically. or if they are aware of them. schools have created partnerships with Can-Sask centres to provide career and employment services on site. facilities. The lack of standards can result in career development services being poorly understood and undervalued. in order to achieve a more balanced view of opportunities. Some career/employment information has a narrow focus and does not reflect the broad universe of possibilities in advising on career development options and pathways. audio-visual. There are many excellent career and employment information resources. Career information must be comprehensive. impartial. dedicated trained staff in the delivery of career information is not available. the training of personnel.
from both informal and formal sources. as it encourages staff members to improve their own skills and abilities by building on what they know and. Workers also seek to build transferable and portable skills. The growing trend of part-time and nonsequential learners. Learning recognition enhances the performance of businesses. Saskatchewan Learning and various partners/stakeholders are increasing capacity to correctly assess and reward an individual’s prior learning.The workplace is changing. The demands of learners on the education system are changing and have resulted in the development of more learner-focused institutions that provide flexible and responsive programming. Continuous learning is a growing expectation in the workplace and recognition of prior learning is a means to support. has created a need for RPL services that serve as a bridge to the recognition of workplace learning. leads to innovation and improved productivity. ultimately. and Recognition of Prior Learning provides a means to transfer between and among systems. requiring employees to develop and apply new skill sets. often acquiring these skills on-the-job. including learners enrolling in part-time programs while maintaining full-time employment. 8 . encourage and reward that learning.
• Career Guidance courses are compulsory requirements in grades 6– 9. • Realign public perceptions/expectations regarding realistic career aspirations (especially parent’s expectations for their children). teachers and administrators and having them pass it on to students and parents. • Work is beginning to incorporate recognition of prior learning into K-12 classrooms so that young people are able to identify transferable skills and knowledge. • Career development themes have been infused in several subjects in the curriculum and plans are underway to expand this approach to all Core Curricula. • Ensure effective monitoring of career development programs and services to achieve 9 . Prepare young people for learning and work Strengths • Career development and work exploration (including work-based-learning) is offered as part of the K-12 curriculum. It is not intended to discount other career transitions that people will experience. quality career assessment resources within the K-12 education system. educational and career counselling services. The following chart presents strengths and challenges related to a number of commonly known career transitions that individuals would experience in their lifetime. • Training of guidance counsellors at the graduate level is available. • Changing teacher’s/counsellor’s attitudes about education and occupational options for students to ensure that they provide balanced information on both university and nonuniversity career options. • Increase efforts in preservice teacher training to support career development initiatives. • Available information and workshops on learning strategies and skills.Strengths and Challenges in Career Development More supports and resources are required to prepare individuals for learning and work and for making the multiple transitions they will experience in life. Challenges • Encourage more students to take Career and Work Exploration • All students must attain basic skills in career development • Getting information to career counsellors. • There is wide-spread distribution of career resources to schools.
• Needs to be more job mentorship programs. • Little or no followthrough with students once they leave school. • Difficulty in getting that first job w/o formal workexperience. to technical and trades programs. and labour market information.. 10 Facilitate transitions from learning to work • Work-based learning and co-operative education programs assist transitions. • Availability of time . attainment of career development competencies).e. • Saskatchewan institutions are responsive to labour market needs. job postings. workplace essential skills). • Ready for Work support materials prepared in partnership with Sask.e. • Provide continuing training for career practitioners.g. • It is difficult to overcome the stigma employers have in hiring persons with disabilities. • Perception by employers that youth is unreliable. • Lack of knowledge (especially for new workers) about how to move from learning to work. • There are limited jobs in certain regions.Strengths Challenges intended student outcomes (e. • Articulation agreements between K-12 and Postsecondary institutions facilitate transitions along “commonly chosen” pathways – i. • Life Transition courses prepares youth in the secondary level for successful transitions to areas of choice. Labour. • Making work experience and cooperative education programs available to a broader group beyond youth. • Some preliminary work on RPL will facilitate transition for some individuals. • Formal training may not provide learners with the soft skills required to function effectively in the workplace (i. and to university programs. • Can-Sask Centres assist with job search techniques.
• Opportunities for advancement.g. • Availability of opportunities to acquire needed new skills. • Currently facilitated by supports and services at Can-Sask Centres and at educational Institutions. • Technology based and enhanced learning. Facilitate transitions between jobs • Identifying skills that can be transferred across jobs. • Ease of access to secondary level in multiple delivery modes to complete graduation requirements. Facilitate transitions from work to learning • Access to PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition). • Increased selection of training programs in rural areas. Number of eligible entrants into training • Lack of income support in long-term training (e. Challenges • Limited recognition of informal learning and learning outside of Canada. both in technical and nontechnical skills and areas where additional learning will be required. • Broad-based access to a provincial job bank database (SaskJobs) located on the SaskNetwork. etc.Strengths credits for designated trades • Advanced placement in trades training programs. 11 . • Individuals have already acquired job skills that may be of use in the new workplace. • Support for workers in (re)learning how to learn Older workers need to balance various life/roles • Limited recognition by individuals of the transferability or value of the skills acquired in a previous job. • Increase in ability to transfer credit between institutions. • Can-Sask Centres offer counselling and information on educational/training options and assist with income support through Skills Training Benefit for eligible individuals. • Awareness and comfort with using PLAR. individual will not be able to access EI if he/she left work to pursue further learning).
Facilitate transitions from work to selfcreated work • Facilitate transitions from work to selfcreated work (continued) Facilitated by services and support offered by organizations such as Regional Economic Development Authorities (REDA) and Entrepreneurial Centres. • Stability issues and how much our work is worth. • Individuals not having a strong understand of marketing and promotion.. • Individual has already acquired some skills that can be of value • Appreciation for individual creativity and ingenuity. • Identification of skills that can be transferred across fields and areas where additional skills need to be acquired. Facilitate transitions between fields • Individual has already acquired some skills that can be of value in the new field. • Identifying skills that can be brought to the workplace as well as identifying gaps in skills 12 . • Concerns on the part of employers about reasons for career change. Facilitate transitions from being unemployed or unpaid to paid work • Attitudes on the part of employers and potential employee who has been unemployed.Strengths Challenges • Increased awareness of the available services and supports. • Proactive use of volunteerism to gain employability skills and experience. • Limited recognition (by the employer and the employee) of the transferability and value of skills acquired in previous field. • Individuals may already have acquired some skills that can facilitate the transition to paid work. • Job equity initiatives. how do we value self-created work over work in established organizations). • Human resource practices that assist with job exchange. • Attitudes towards selfcreated work (e. • Secondary level courses in entrepreneurship. • Availability of opportunities to acquire needed new skills.g.
people to remain engaged • Learning the “new in learning/working later in skills” required to adjust life. • Can. programs and bridging programs do supports to individuals not necessarily provide seeking employment? the long-term support that some individuals • Innovative programs that may require to link address soft and hard skills successfully with the development and workforce. developed that provide interventions specific to individual needs rather than generic. of succession planning. to retirement continues • Larger employers do to be an area that is annual retirement planning underdeveloped in the sessions. unemployment and to acquire new skills. transitional programs and services provided.Strengths Challenges • Transitional and bridging • Incentives to leave programs are in place. Facilitate transitions from paid work to retirement • Greater opportunity at • Ways to deal with this point in time for financial limitations. facilitates re-entry plus • Programs need to be maintenance in the workforce.Sask Centres • Transitional and provide a vast array of services. or onesize-fits-all programs. • Some sectors offer • Incorporate effective use regular retirement seminars. 13 .
There are some forums established for dialogue with Aboriginal groups. and listen to First Nations. multiple (and perhaps non-traditional) career development supports and services. Establishing a balance in the interface between the individual and society is essential for the creation of successful programs. recruitment and retention of Aboriginal people into the labour force is critical. Access to services for those who require extra support to succeed in developing their life/work skills is often difficult or inequitable and these individuals fall through the cracks. converse with. Career counselling services are limited in availability outside of the education and human services sector to larger employers.Lifelong Learning Challenges and Responses Lifelong learning is a challenge. stigma against persons with disabilities and members of a racial group) to assist with career development.g. nor are they convinced of its value. They need to be invited to participate in planning activities pertaining to the resolution of education and labour force issues in Saskatchewan to ensure that their input informs future action. The demand for these services far outstrips the capacity to deliver and more funding is required to expand these programs. Given the rate of growth in the Aboriginal population. Accommodations are required for those learners with special needs or those who experience barriers to employment (e. workforce and individual needs when assessing needs in lifelong learning. informal and non-formal experiences need to be established and stakeholders require training in the use of these assessment methods/processes. Métis and other Aboriginal groups. traditions and context. Unfortunately. the Saskatchewan Labour Market Network and the Aboriginal Representative Workforce Council. The challenge is how to effectively engage them in these established forums that encourage and promote their participation. These groups need to be supported in developing programs for themselves that reflect their cultural values. as well as retraining options need to be available that keep pace with technological and economic changes. regardless of age or position. There are some options to consider that will make adult access to career development better including more 14 . Career development services need to negotiate that relationship between the individual and society in the service of their clients. Another challenge is balancing issues such as social. and do not restrict learner access. for those who require this kind of awareness raising. The most important challenge is to raise awareness about the universal need for lifelong learning. Because many changes in employment will occur over a person’s lifetime. there is no easily developed method for targeting information to segments of a population. Workers who are between jobs currently have few opportunities to acquire needed new skills. Not all segments of the population are aware of what lifelong learning is.. There needs to be a conscious effort to meet with. Reliable and valid methods for assessing learning acquired through formal. such as the First Nations and Métis Labour Market Planning Forums led by Saskatchewan Learning.
15 .innovative approaches to service delivery – based on information/communications technology – and by stimulating private markets for career development.
Workforce Development Challenges The population demographics in Saskatchewan. etc.. not enough young people are entering trades and technology occupations. In particular. Such approaches as flexible working conditions and establishing the legislative and legal arrangement conducive to hiring retirees maybe considered. Giving tax incentives to youth up to the age of 29 to remain employed in Saskatchewan has been suggested by some people as a way to entice these young workers to stay in the province. Some people perceive the “grass is greener” in other provinces because of higher wages but are not fully aware of the higher costs of living outside of Saskatchewan. on an equal footing. career development service providers can help by making connection to employment opportunities elsewhere to assist youth in developing careers in a particular sector that is limited in Saskatchewan. Other considerations. job satisfaction and career path associated with trades and technology occupations. While assuring that job seekers are aware of all other career and employment opportunities that are available in Saskatchewan. Employment and career opportunities in some sectors are limited in Saskatchewan. roofing. Residential 16 . More information needs to be available that provides a realistic view of the opportunities. tile setting) and learners need to go elsewhere for training. Another issue is that apprenticeship training in some trade areas is not offered locally (i.More opportunities for training need to be made available in the workplace. Small employers have few resources to train their existing staff and they risk the chance of losing employees who are looking for career advancement because they cannot afford to train them. framers. and out-migration of youth and the working population present considerable challenges in workforce development. As the rural economy changes there will be a significant need in the near future to retrain rural workers. Some people lack the appropriate skills for learning and require opportunities for developing the motivation to learn and the skills to manage their own learning. Employers who are either experiencing a shortage or see an upcoming shortage want occupations within their sectors/industries (e. speech pathologists. an ageing population. need to be able to access information about the requirements for success in a wide array of careers.g. financial rewards. rather than presenting all post-secondary options. especially in rural areas. involving both university and non-university training paths. and those who influence their education and career decisions. towards university as a post-secondary option. Remaining competitive with other western provinces is difficult because wages are comparatively low in Saskatchewan. as part of the courses offered at each of the four Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology campuses) or in the province at all (e. There is an implicit or explicit bias. Students. Saskatchewan is anticipating a shortage of skilled workers in the future. such as retaining potential retirees from the current workforce.e. have not even begun to be addressed.) promoted. Recognizing foreign and out-of-province credentials would allow immigrating workers to experience quick and seamless entry into the provincial workforce upon arrival. including the trades.g.
coordination and collaboration that are required to support an effective. the government is developing a Provincial Literacy Strategy.construction “speciality trades” have yet to be designated although work is being done in that area. oftentimes performance evaluations are not linked to employee career development planning. including the private sector. An evaluation of the province’s Basic Education Programs occurred in 1999 and. In recognition of the need to address improvements to literacy programs and services in Saskatchewan. The business community needs to be engaged to identify challenges and participate in planning to find solutions. Employers need to address negative racial attitudes that prevent the development of a positive and welcoming workplace climate in order to retain Aboriginal employees over the long-term. a Basic Education Redesign Task Team was created in March 2001 to oversee the implementation of the recommendations. There is a lack of awareness of workforce development issues in many areas. employers require support in planning. Human resource practices are outdated within some sectors. An awareness and resolution of workplace equity issues needs to occur to remove barriers to hiring Aboriginal workers. There is a low level of literacy/education in some sectors of the population. A piecemeal approach can result in redundancy. developing and implementing strategies for effective employee recruitment and retention. Even if the provision of career guidance may result in a client moving out-of-province. The consequent redesign of the Basic Education curriculum is addressing the needs of the changing demographics of the province’s Aboriginal population and meeting labour market demands. In occupational areas where prospects for employment are non-existent in Saskatchewan. For example. accessible and sustainable system. inefficiencies and gaps. counsellors may need to direct clients to information that will enable them to pursue the appropriate educational opportunities and advise them as to where to relocate in the country to find gainful employment. Also. Aboriginal people must be afforded every opportunity to train and access meaningful work experiences and work opportunities. Workforce development requires attention to all elements of the equation. Employers often need assistance with developing human resource processes. Saskatchewan is aiming for a representative workforce now and in its shared future. Employers often do not have the capacity/capability in-house to undertake these steps. These employers need to be made aware of the Sector Partnership Program that will link them within an industry/sector/occupational grouping that 17 . as a result. many of whom also have very limited work experience. “employers + job seekers = employment”. A provincial strategy needs to be developed that engages service providers and employers to raise awareness and develop a holistic response to these issues. it is an essential part of the role of service providers to support clients in the achievement of their goals. The Strategy outlines new approaches to planning.
provides funding support for planning. Recruitment practices may prevent creative problem-solving and better serve profession turf protection at the expense of serving clients most effectively. There are a number of supports emerging to address the limitations some people face while seeking self-employment. More incentives are required to attract and support people to undertake selfemployment opportunities. The strategy should identify priority areas for action and roles and responsibilities of different sectors (government. 3. educators and career service practitioners to identify and begin dismantling the systemic barriers to positive change. Develop a provincial strategy for the delivery of career development services in Saskatchewan. For example. More work needs to be done to encourage employers to support and hire workers that experience barriers to employment. Subsidizing wages and providing training-on-the-job and job coaching support would serve as motivation for employers. Many companies require support to effectively identify the current set of knowledge. industry. More Effective Career Development Service Provision The following represent recommended actions by respondents to the survey to improve career development service provision (they are not arranged in order of importance). policy makers. and the volunteer sectors). education system. unions. certified journeypersons cannot teach vocational courses to high school students unless they have professional teaching certification. including working definitions of key terms and services. 1. judgements and values in their employee base and use this for human resource development and succession planning to met future requirements. skills. Using a team approach coupled with the definition of shared purpose and common goals would be a good beginning. as well as a model for the delivery of these services. Employers undertake minimal succession planning. Continue to seek input from key stakeholders and build inclusive communities – everyone has something to contribute. business and labour. Encourage and provide a forum for direct dialogue among employers. Continuing consultations with employers. 2. recent immigrants and special needs clientele is essential to determine their needs and to ensure their awareness of services and supports that are available. high school students who receive vocational training from a professional teacher who delivers the approved apprenticeship curriculum do not receive credit within the apprenticeship system unless the teacher is a certified journeyperson. seniors. 18 . developing and implementing recruitment and retention strategies.
There is a plethora of information available but the best means of producing. skill development and staff commitment to professional development and delivery of services have a major influence upon the types and quality of services that government is able to provide. etc. or newly landed immigrants. etc. Career development services have to be accessible to people who are not moving linearly through the education system on to employment but may be accessing services at any one of a number of transition points. Employers require support in identifying the knowledge. Increase the array of services available (in person. Finding ways to value and recognize prior learning is becoming increasingly important for educational institutions that promote and support a life long learning culture. job seekers. This communication and networking needs to occur at the provincial. in turn. Simultaneous efforts are needed to build awareness of existing resources. and making accessible. regional and local levels. 5. 8. At the workplace. Training. 9. labour market information has a strong focus on employment and occupations but is not necessarily easily interpreted by individuals entering into the system from the outside (adults outside of the educational system. In addition to the existing Teacher Externship program. career information in a variety of formats is essential to enable employers. Program/service evaluation has been limited but is necessary to provide evidence to support continued. institutions. be better able to informing their students about these opportunities. only one course is offered.). teachers should be provided with more opportunities for first hand on-site experience in many occupations. Career development service providers need to communicate and network to develop a better understanding of what each of the agencies/institutions is doing and reduce duplication of services. if not increased. skills. and create understanding of benefits using diverse media. 6. judgement and values required in the organization to avoid a mismatch between job and skills. Ensure service providers are kept current on issues and best practices. At the graduate level. industry. Information obtained through evaluation also feeds into quality assurance mechanisms and identifies gaps or inefficiencies in service provision. This would help them to be better informed about the broad range of possible occupations and their requirements and. 19 . the technical skills of employees are supported and recognized. workers. technology assisted and self-directed) to individuals. Teachers also are in need of preservice training in career development as there are no courses currently provided at either of the two provincial universities in Saskatchewan. employers. 7. services and supports. communities. and educational institutions to make a range of informed decisions. investment in career development services. but the full scope of capability of workers may not be known. Supports for building capacity to use PLAR and other RPL processes are essential.4. For example.
2. transferable skills and life/work management skills. These were: 1.Most Important Elements of Career Development Services and Supports to be Addressed From a lengthy list of important elements to be addressed there were several that were given a high level of importance. 3. Career development must shift focus from top down to a cooperative effort of communities/ government/education institutions/industry as equal partners. Services and supports need to be individualized to address needs and potential barriers of all clients and to ensure that there is equal access to employment opportunities. Develop a long-term comprehensive strategy and plan with required resources and supports. across occupations and fields. 20 . 4. Develop essential work skills.
from traditional work to self-created work. what are the most important elements (2-5) of career development services and supports that need to be addressed in Saskatchewan? 21 . between jobs. How can providers of career development services and supports be more effective sources of expertise and support for employers and policy makers. from unemployed to work or from paid work to retirement). What are the workforce development challenges in Saskatchewan to which career development services and supports could respond? How could career development services and supports respond to these challenges? 5. • Facilitate successful transitions (for example. practice and employer stakeholders. school. home and community. from learning to work.ATTACHMENT Saskatchewan Career Development Services and Supports Survey Questionnaire 1. • Facilitate learner/worker participation in lifelong learning and career management in the workplace. Incorporating the perspectives of policy. work to learning. What is your definition of “career development”? 2. as well as for their clientele? 6. What are the lifelong learning challenges in Saskatchewan to which career development services and supports could/should respond? How could career development services and supports respond to these challenges? 4. What are the career development services and supports that your organization/department offers? Who do you serve? What do you see as the most important issues related to career development services and supports in Saskatchewan? If applicable. focus on the current strengths and challenges of services and supports that: • Prepare young people for learning and work. between fields. 3.
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