Last updated: 30 November 2022
Published on: 01 March 2022
By Jill Arul
With the advancement of technology in the 1990s, computers became an essential item in the workplace and over the next decade demand for high-skilled technical professionals increased by 18 per cent in Singapore.
As tech continues to evolve from manually keyed-in spreadsheets to advanced data analytics and artificial intelligence, professionals too need to upgrade their skills. With demand for tech talent steadily rising, the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) ensures the nation’s digital future is secured with the TechSkills Accelerator (TeSA) initiative.
Over several programmes, TeSA supports professionals as they upgrade their skills to pursue a career in tech. In particular, the TeSA Company-Led Training (CLT) programme provides fresh and mid-career professionals the opportunity for training in areas like 5G, Internet of Things, cloud computing, cybersecurity and more.
Empowered by experienced mentors and on-the-job training, trainees of the TeSA CLT programme are set to emerge globally competitive and prepared to pursue successful careers in tech. Read on to find out how two trainee, Ms Celine Lim and Ms Kanchan embarked on the TeSA CLT programme to grow their capabilities and skills and contribute to Singapore’s tech ecosystem.
Sailing towards success
As a system analyst at her previous job, Ms Lim was able to fulfil her tech interests by solving problems using software and digital tools. Involved in the software life cycle from the beginning to the end, Ms Lim gathered user requirements and analysed problem statements reported by users. She would then propose and discuss potential solutions before developing the relevant software.
Despite enjoying her work, Ms Lim hoped to enter a new field and dive deeper into software development. In 2019, through the TeSA CLT programme, Ms Lim joined PSA Singapore with the intention of learning more about the maritime industry and acquiring new skills. Before long, she was in the thick of production and development.
The six-month programme under the wing of an experienced buddy not only provided Ms Lim with the relevant domain knowledge, but also offered her the room to grow into her role. In particular, Ms Lim’s assigned buddy helped guide her as she learned how to use development tools and address live operational issues.
“The structured programme helped me quickly pick up new tech competencies and skills and apply them right away on the job. During my training, my buddy was always available to guide me when I needed help so I did not feel so alone.”
Ms Celine Lim
Despite being initially unfamiliar with various software practitioner’s techniques like devops, CI/CD, agile etc, Ms Lim pushed through with the help of her team mates and further hone her skills by taking on the role of software engineer in the product team. Now, as a software engineer, Ms Lim helps to enhance port and supply chain efficiency by working on iBOX, an award-winning depot management system that digitally connects the port with container depots globally.
With the technical skills and industry knowledge gained through the TeSA CLT programme, Ms Lim recognises the value of on-the-job training. On top of her prior experience as a tech professional, Ms Lim benefitted greatly and completed the programme with skills and competencies, and remains competitive in the industry and Singapore’s tech ecosystem.
Becoming the ‘Ace of Rookies’
Over a decade ago, at just 16 years old, Ms Kanchan already recognised the value of technology. In fact, in secondary school as part of an exclusive group of 40 students, Ms Kanchan pursued computer science as a subject and had the opportunity to learn how to code, develop an application and watch her work come to life as a practical solution in the real world.
After her undergraduate studies, Ms Kanchan continued her digital journey and joined IMDA’s TeSA CLT programme with tech company Cognizant. Ms Kanchan started with three months of training to acquire technical skills like Java programming before moving to in-depth on-the-job training and experience for seven months.
Over the course of the programme, she learned how to design a test case, minimise defects and leakages and look out for common issues. Quickly overcoming difficulty with Java, the robust on-the-job training Ms Kanchan received laid the foundation for later success in her testing role.
“I felt like I had room to learn and grow. The environment allowed me to make mistakes and grow from them.”
Awarded the ‘Ace of Rookies’ honour at Cognizant for her demonstration of fast learning and embracing Cognizant’s culture, Ms Kanchan’s future in tech is full of potential. Today, the technical capabilities, practical training and group interactions she benefitted from through the TeSA CLT programme put her in good stead to advance her career at Cognizant and contribute to Singapore’s tech landscape.
With targeted on-the-job training, the TeSA CLT programme trains and grows the capabilities and technical skills of local professionals—. By partnering industry players to develop tech talent, IMDA grows the nation’s pool of local tech professionals and offers Singaporeans the opportunity to remain competitive globally in the digital economy and pursue high value jobs in tech.
Are you looking to grow your own tech capabilities? Find out more about IMDA’s TechSkills Accelerator (TeSA) Company-Led Training (CLT) programme here.