Public servants to fill leisure sector HR dearth long shot: Dinesh
Daily Mirror
29 Sep 2015

Getting public servants to switch careers to the leisure sector to address the human resource shortage in the sector would not be the way to address the issue, according to National Human Resource Development Council Chairman Dinesh Weerakkody. “The suggestion made by Economist Dr. Coomaraswamy to get public servants to switch careers and move to fill the jobs in the leisure sector would not work and the public service would end up in having more disengaged staff,” said Weerakkody. Dr. Coomaraswamy had proposed that government servants be given a voluntary opportunity, with training, to switch to the leisure sector to address acute human resource (HR) shortages. “Good HR is all about getting the right skills in the right place for people to do their best work. Only certain skills and abilities are transferable and some are not, therefore what Dr. Coomaraswamy is suggesting is not workable for the tourism industry,” Weerakkody added. He expressed that the education system must be reoriented from supply to a demand-driven process. “What we need to do is for the public-private links to be strengthened and to reorient the higher education and TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training) system to refocus from supply to demand,” he said. In his view, the limited government training investments should be channelled towards job entry training and skill upgrades instead of delivering entirely new skills to mid-level executives. “Many of the skills challenges we have could be addressed by letting the government be the financier rather than the executor and the private sector could be incentivized and driven to provide education and training,” Weerakkody added