A micro-credential system introduced by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority will help ensure that New Zealand businesses can access employees with the skills they need in a world that is rapidly changing, says BusinessNZ.
BusinessNZ Chief Executive Kirk Hope has welcomed the flexibility and innovation that micro-credentials will bring to New Zealand’s regulated education and training system.
"This is a great new way of engaging with employees and responding to changing employer skill demands, and micro-credentials complement longer-duration full qualifications," Mr Hope said.
"Business is changing and so is the future of work. Employees will need to continue developing up-to-date skills throughout their working lives to future-proof their employability and the businesses they work for. Micro-credentials will allow them to upskill in a way that suits their needs and circumstances without having to undergo a lengthy training process."
"Micro-credentials - shorter bite-sized "bits" of learning - provide businesses and employees with greater opportunities for upskilling when required. This means it will be easier for employees to evolve in their current roles or step into new roles without having to undergo a full qualification or lengthy retraining process," Mr Hope said.
"Most importantly, they will enable industry and businesses to identify areas of priority and unmet skill need and then partner with tertiary education providers and Industry Training Organisations to develop micro-credentials that respond quickly to these skills and knowledge needs.
"The fact that micro-credentials cover smaller sets of skills and learning and allow for emergent skills related to new technology and knowledge to be brought to market quickly is a big selling point. This could be an opportunity for businesses and industries to develop their own micro-credentials as part of their in-house training," Mr Hope said.
"I look forward to seeing how micro-credentials will be embraced and used to extend opportunities for learning, to address skill shortages and assist employees to develop new up to date skills.
"BusinessNZ will work with the NZQA and government to build awareness of the role micro-credentials could play in addressing skill gaps," Mr Hope says.