Fagbohun urges students to learn new skills to stay competitive in post-covid-19 job environment

By Omon Smart

Vice Chancellor, Lagos State University (LASU) Prof. Olanrewaju Adigun Fagbohun, SAN, NPOM, has joined his voice to those of other experts, in calling on Students and Alumni of the institution to embrace new and relevant skills to stay competitive in the post-Covid-19 labour market.

The Vice Chancellor spoke at the Mentor Zone 2020 Session organised by the Lagos State University Career Development Centre for Students of the University with the theme “New Trends in Employee Recruitment: Post Covid-19”.

While giving his remarks at the virtual training, the Professor of Environmental Law noted that the Covid-19 pandemic has compelled a new reality in the workplace which sees many companies shifting to remote working and making employees to work from home using new technologies. As a result of this, employers, he said, are now looking for employees who can fit in to the new flexible system, not just efficient ones.

“As we participate in this training, there are questions that you must ask yourself: where are the job opportunities in post Covid-19? What skills and attributes are employers going to be looking for? How do you personalize your resume such that employers will identify you as someone they are looking for? What tips for online applications do you need to function effectively in the new work environment?

“For those of you in this training, you are getting yourselves prepared for the post covid-19 world of work and I congratulate you for equipping yourselves,” he said, while also thanking the speakers and discussants for giving back to their alma mater through the training.

Modupe Bankole, the Guest Speaker, and an internationally recognised Human Resource Professional, in her lecture, revealed that the acquisition of 21st Century skills is non-negotiable for graduates to clinch their dream jobs today, as change is now the name of the game.

“The future of work encompasses change in work, the workforce and the workplace. For work, with increasing robotics, cognitive and AI technologies, work can now be done with and by machines; for the workforce, with new platforms and contracts, employers are looking for who can do the work, leveraging on the continuum of talents from full-time, to manages services, to freelancers, gig workers and the crowd; while the workplace is now anywhere the work can be done, and not necessarily in the business office space.”

Bankole further revealed that as far as recruitment is concerned, work roles and titles will change as employers demand for roles that allow flexibility and mobility across functions for organisation’s efficiency, the implication of which is that multi-skilled candidates will be preferred.

For students and alumni to remain relevant, therefore, she urged them to acquire the 21st Century skills, including Learning Skills (critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication), Literacy Skills (information, media, and technology) and Life skills (flexibility, leadership, initiative, productivity and social skill).

“In a world of continues disruptions, continuous learning and self development is key. According to Alvin Tofler, the illiterate of the 21st Century will not be those what cannot read and write. But those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn,” she concluded.

Discussants, Kehinde Kenku and Dr. Azeez Rasheed were not left out as they trained the over ninety participants on leveraging on social media platforms like LinkedIn to market their skills while urging the University’s Managers to embrace innovations and technologies to keep the institution going.

The Session was moderated by the Director, LCDC, Dr. Igot Ofem.

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