Decades ago, getting a job was pretty
easy. It was in plenty, even allowing
eligible workers to choose where
to work and what to accept as pay
Today, the story is different; getting a job is like
the proverbial needle passing through the eyes
of a Carmel. Jobs are shrinking, factories and
businesses are closing shops, millions of workers
are losing their jobs daily, and those who hold on
to one are not paid as at when due.
The plight of both the employed and the
unemployed are pathetic and heartbreaking. For
instance, the International LabourOrganisation,
ILO, reported that about 205million people across
the world are out of work in 2010 as a result of the
2008 global economic recession. But a new report
released recently by the same body predicted a
further rise in unemployment by 2019.
The report stated that by 2019, more than
212million people will be out of work, up from
the current 201million. The report tagged:
World Employment and Social Outlook Trends
2015, further explained that the slowdown in the
supply of labour is caused partly by the world’s
aging population.
The report added that only 42 percent of the
world’s workforce have stable contracts, or have
permanent contracts among those who earn
salaries, which invariably leads to growing job
insecurity. The dwindling share of steady jobs
comes against the backdrop of soaring global
unemployment, which means that working in
such conditions is no guarantee for prosperity as
they find themselves in dire poverty.
For instance, today, ten percent of the global
workforce lives on earnings of less than $1.25.
No doubt, for the working population, difficult
times lie ahead. The way forward therefore, is to
ensure that policies and programmes take into
consideration the evolution of how we work. With
the numberof older people rising everywhere in
the world, it means the share of older workers
aged 55 or above in the world’s workforce is likely
to increase by a further 270million to almost
750million by 2030.
On the other hand, an aging labour force means
skill mismatch that will cost more to deal with, as
companies will need to shift the workplace to the
needs of older workers.
But more crucially, to effectively tackle this
worsening economic crisis, which has put workers
and the poor in a perilous situation, governments
at all levels must as a matter of urgency apply
necessary measures that will stimulate and
expand the economy so that it can retain and
absorb the increasing number of jobseekers.
In order to diversify the economy and generate
additional sources of foreign exchange for the
country, employers of labour, particularly private
investors, must pay more attention to agriculture
which is the largest employer of labour, as well as
the solid minerals sector as these would diversify
the economy and generate additional sources of
foreign exchange for the country.
In addition, educational curriculum should
be changed from placing emphasis on paper
qualification and white collar jobs to practical
skills and self employment.
Indeed, if the right policies and activities are in
place, there is no reason why local and foreign
investors will not flock in grooves to invest their
capital in the creation of the much needed jobs for
countries with overgrowing jobless population.
Therefore, we need more creative thinking and
smart policies to create new jobs, even in the
most unlikely areas of the economy, bringing
back lost ones, retain and expand existing jobs
and continue the search for more new ones. By
so doing, we will be growing the economy in such
a way that it will continuously absorb more and
more people.