JCTI to launch platform to connect employers and tourism workers, says Bartlett

Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett, says the Jamaica Centre for Tourism Innovation (JCTI), will launch a technology platform in early 2022, that will help to connect certified tourism workers with potential employers.

“In early 2022, The JCTI will be rolling out the database of certified persons, which will enable certified job seekers to upload their resume to the online portal, while employers will be able to readily find and invite candidates with the right skills to apply for positions in their organisations,” the Minister said. “And this is a revolutionary move in our labour market arrangements.”

Bartlett was speaking at the official opening of the 444-suite Ocean Eden Garden hotel in Trelawny last Thursday.

In addition, the Minister indicated that the JCTI is expanding the capabilities of its learning management system to facilitate the delivery of online courses to people in the Caribbean.

He noted that the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in staffing challenges within the industry worldwide, as workers who lost their jobs have transited to other professions. In that regard, Bartlett said the JCTI will be used as a medium to revolutionise the recruitment of tourism workers to help address that shortfall.

“Workers have transited into other areas, creating a level of disruption that is threatening the recovery process. So, we are moving to train and retrain and build the capacity of our workforce here, so that the recovery [of the industry] can be stable and seamless,” he said, indicating that the JCTI has been doing an excellent job of driving the professional development of workers.

The Minister disclosed that some 8,700 people have been trained and certified by the centre since its inception in 2017.

Bartlett went on to share that discussions are underway with local and international partners to further expand the offerings at the JCTI to help tourism workers scale up their capacity, in order for them to be able to provide a higher quality of service post pandemic.

“As investments enhance the island’s tourism offerings, thousands of job opportunities will open for Jamaicans. Therefore, there is a pressing need to address a challenging staff situation that has emerged as a result of the disruption in the supply chain occasioned by COVID. My Ministry is geared towards working with our partners in building out the capacity of all our workers, who are now coming into the industry to do a better job,” the Minister said.

“Already, we have had engagements with the American Hotel and Lodging Institute, the American Culinary Foundation, the HEART/NSTA Trust and Wray and Nephew Academy, as well as Smith Tourism Research, and I just finished discussion with a team out of Seville, in Spain, to enable training in language,” he added.

The JCTI was created to increase access to certification for recent graduates as well as workers in the industry.

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