Swisscom steps up commitment to ICT vocational training
Berne, 11 November 2010
Switzerland is faced with an impending shortage of skilled workers in the field of information and communications technology (ICT). Some 170,000 people are currently engaged in a variety of ICT professions. As one of the country's biggest employers, Swisscom is particularly committed to promoting the training and development of new ICT talent. Swisscom has recently begun lending support to the foundation "IT-Berufsbildung Schweiz" (IT Vocational Training Switzerland) founded by the umbrella organisation ICTswitzerland.
Swisscom has taken its role as a trainer in the field of ICT very seriously for years. As a result, Switzerland's leading provider of telecommunications services is currently providing vocational training to some 400 apprentices in the technical fields of IT, telematics and mediamatics. Moreover, around 200 internships are offered to students every year to give them an insight into the field and help them launch their careers. Recruiting well-trained ICT specialists is not only important for Swisscom. At Swisscom alone and despite the large number of apprentices, there are still around 110 job vacancies in the ICT environment, and this figure is on the increase. Experts estimate that Switzerland's shortage of IT specialists already amounts to 1,500 to 2,500 every year. Swisscom plans to combat this drastically worsening shortage of specialists in cooperation with the "IT Vocational Training Switzerland" foundation. By 2015, the foundation wants to help create over one thousand new apprenticeships in the field of information and communications technology and ensure sustainable, standardised vocational development that is recognised across Switzerland.
Promotion of young talent is vital
Information and communications technology is considered a vital area of growth, and not just at Swisscom. Accounting for 5% of gross domestic product (CHF 25 billion), ICT is a field that is vitally important for Switzerland's ability to compete as an innovation and technology hub. Swisscom's involvement in the "IT Vocational Training Switzerland" foundation is only one of numerous examples of the Group's targeted promotion of young talent. For years Swisscom has been supporting the IngCH association, which promotes a broad range of up-and-coming engineers. IngCH not only organises technology weeks at Swiss secondary schools in order to draw attention to the attractiveness of technical professions; together with ETH it also holds technology days for girls, dubbed "Meitli-Technik-Tage", to alleviate any reservations young women might have concerning information technology. Swisscom works together with the OdA ICT Berne association to organise similar activities in the area of vocational training.