Manufacturing workforce needs upskilling, tech adaptation

Manufacturing workforce needs upskilling, tech adaptation

Tech company Microsoft and Singapore Polytechnic has collaborated to help achieve Singapore's aim to grow the manufacturing sector by 50% in 2030.

Tech giant Microsoft and Singapore Polytechnic are working together to enhance the industry’s digital manufacturing capabilities through bridging the skills and employability gap in the manufacturing workforce, a vital step in achieving the nation’s industrial growth objectives.

Dr. Chong Chee Wei, Director at the School of Mechanical & Aeronautical Engineering, said that in order to improve employability of the workforce, companies need to equip them with two things.

“First, the right technologies and powerful tools that allow them to perform their tasks efficiently and enable them to innovate for the future. Next, is to upskill the workforce, with the right competency to use this technology so that the industry can harness the greatest benefits from it,” Dr. Chong said.

He added that the collaboration is geared precisely towards this, showcasing Microsoft’s digital solutions in manufacturing at Singapore Polytechnic's Advanced Manufacturing Center.

“In Singapore Polytechnic Advanced Manufacturing Center, we will showcase how the suite of Microsoft digital solutions can be deployed in manufacturing. And we can train the industry workforce and our students to deploy this technology efficiently,” he said.

Dr. Chong also mentioned that the collaboration is not just about technology integration but also focuses on upskilling the workforce to harness the full potential of these technological advancements. He emphasized the importance of this synergy in fostering innovation and efficiency, crucial for the sector’s growth and adaptation to future challenges.

“Well, one of the key challenges is how do we instill a sense of urgency and bring more companies, particularly the small medium enterprises to come on board to embrace new technology for the necessary transformation,” he said.

Looking ahead, Dr. Chong discussed how the partnership with Microsoft positions Singapore Polytechnic as a pivotal player in the evolving manufacturing landscape as it aims to be a hub for transformation and upskilling of the manufacturing sector.

“We can't do it alone. We need strategic partners like Microsoft to embark on this journey together. Collectively, we can provide a comprehensive package in terms of manufacturing solutions, like those from Microsoft, and necessary training to companies and their workforce. And we are confident we can contribute much to the present and the future of the Singapore manufacturing sector,” he ended.

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