Fortune favors the Bold: Attacking the global skills gap at Davos 2018

Share Article

Fortune favors the Bold: Attacking the global skills gap at Davos 2018

Malik Zakaria, Founder & CEO of FieldEngineer .com,an on-demand telecom, systems, and networking workforce platform, welcomes the Davos initiative that oversees large-scale global companies collaborate on a world-widetraining platform. The on-demand workforce is set to be the big winners!

The World Economic Forum in Davos saw a host of global political and business leaders gather to address the most pressing issues of our time.  But Davos is so much more than a talking shop.

Real, life-changing, bold initiatives get kick-started at the Forum and each year sees a wave of announcements and progress reports on projects that began life at previous editions of the event.

As an example, two years ago, the tech business leaders in the Forum's IT Governors Community recognized a collective need to address the global tech skills gap and the job displacement that would arise from increasing industrial automation, as observed by MIT's McAfee and Brynjolfsson in their recent tome, 'The Second Machine Age'.

As a result, Cisco's Chairman and CEO Chuck Robbins led a group of global businesses – including Cisco, CA Technologies, SAP, Tata, Hewlett Packard and others – who put aside their competitive instincts and collaborated on a Forum project that could benefit them all and target the global IT skills gap.

The result was officially launched at Davos last week. A global Skillset portal that is aimed at helping workers assess their IT readiness and identify their training needs.  The initiative targets helping one million people with resources and training opportunities by January 2021. Skills covered would include networking, big data, machine learning, and artificial intelligence.

At the press conference announcing the portal, Chuck Robbins said: "In our dynamic world, technology has opened up many avenues for growth. However, we are also seeing how innovations such as artificial intelligence and automation can impact the workforce. It is our obligation to make sure that people are given the means to learn new skills and remain competitive."

Malik Zakaria concurs and expands on Robbins's perspectives, "in order to drive the digital revolution the next generation of skills required by freelancers will be to take advantage of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data science. FieldEngineer delivers on this amalgamation by seamlessly enabling clients around the world to engage engineers directly for both on-demand and project-based work-orders."

At FieldEngineer, we welcome the vision underpinning this initiative by The Forum. It's especially important because it brings together the capabilities and strengths of so many IT companies all committed to helping create the highly-skilled workforce needed not only for the jobs of the future but also to meet the digital challenges of today.

That commitment to industry collaboration for the greater good was highlighted at the press conference by SAP's CEO Bill McDermott who stressed: "Our purpose is bigger than ourselves and our companies. This one reskilling portal will reach many millions of people – far more than anyone of us could hope to achieve individually."

It's a vision and commitment we share and strongly endorse at Field Engineer and we are in good company.  Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum hailed the Skillset platform as the first-ever IT initiative to bring competitive training content from multiple companies together on one independent platform to serve the common good. 

Schwab said: "We need responsive solutions and coordination from all parts of society – governments, citizens and private industry alike – to re-envision an educational system based on lifelong learning that can fully prepare workers for the jobs of the future. This initiative is a clear example of industry leaders taking concerted, collective action to address a major social challenge at scale."

Last month we wrote about the growing importance of the on-demand workforce, which contributed some $1.4 trillion to the US economy last year - and that's a group of workers that we can be confident will take advantage of training and upskilling opportunities.

Indeed, it is a stand-out fact in the Annual Report of the Freelancers Union of America that the majority of the on-demand workforce – some 55 percent – has learned new skills in the last six months.  This compares to just 30 percent of paid employees.  Those in the on-demand workforce understand the need to keep adding to their skillset, and that one of the best ways to be in demand is to be at the forefront of technology.

That's one of the reasons why our FieldEngineer platform allows telco service providers or equipment companies to search for freelance field engineers by skill set, by certification, as well as by location. That way they can find local engineers with the right certifications and qualifications for each particular job.  With some 35,000 engineers already on our platform – covering more than 160 countries – we already helped some 10,000 telecoms engineering projects to be completed.

FieldEngineer thinks the Davos initiative to make it easier for workers to assess training needs and then access training content and programmes will be strongly welcomed.  In particular, we are certain that there will be no shortage of independent field engineers eager to take advantage of the opportunity presented by the Skillset portal. What's more, once armed with their new skills and qualifications, Field Engineer's on-demand portal and platform is ready to welcome new recruits and accelerate their path towards success.

Media Contact: Mufti Ahmed,, 212-257-1713,

News distributed by PR Newswire iReach:


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print