OCBC Bank to spend $20 million on digital upskilling programme

OCBC Bank to spend $20 million on digital upskilling programme

Singapore's OCBC Bank is to spend $20 million on a workforce digital transformation programme designed to equip its 29,000 staff with the skills required to stay relevant in a technologically-driven banking culture.

The bank says that the 'Future Smart Programme' will make it possible for a cheque processing executive to become a data scientist in three years, spotting trends in payment-related data and making business recommendations.

Jason Ho, head of group human resources, OCBC Bank, says: “The speed at which technology is changing can make us vulnerable - jobs that are here today may be gone tomorrow. Businesses must therefore take steps to ensure that employees have the digital competencies needed to thrive. And it is more than just skills building. New technologies will continue to emerge so it is critical that we create a strong learning culture that encourages a mindset receptive to learning, unlearning and relearning."

The three-year programme is built on a '7-Pillar Curriculum' programme comprising four qualification standards across a suite of 6,000 online programmes as well as speaker sessions, workshops and classroom learning.

To begin with the bank is bringing in industry experts in human-centred design and agile methodology to impart skills on design thinking to employees.

Employees on the course will also be seconded to teams that are running digital projects on a freelance basis.

Says Ho: “We want our employees to be proactive in looking at themselves and asking - 'will I still be relevant 5, 10, 20 years down the road, and what can I do to stay ahead?'"

The OCBC programme comes a day after Malaysia's Maybank launched a mandatory ‘FutureReady' digital upskilling course, investing $7.6 million to increase its employees’ digital literacy as well as equip them with capabilities that will ensure their relevance now and in the future.

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