Year 2016
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Just-in-Time Education – Closed

As part of the urban challenge Talent voor de Toekomst (‘Talent for the Future’), the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area is pursuing innovation in the education sector.
Of all children starting primary school now, 65% will end up having jobs that currently don’t exist. Employers increasingly demand specific skills and specifically trained personnel.
The world is changing at a dizzying pace. The Dutch education system and labour market need to evolve swiftly and flexibly in order to keep up with the fourth industrial revolution and to remain at the top of Europe’s economic regions.

The economy is gradually picking up again, but many people remain sidelined. Particularly for the middle segment of the workforce (MBO level in the Dutch system: secondary vocational education), conditions will get even harder in the years to come.
At the same time, there is an increasing demand for trained workers with specific skills, for instance those that match the rapid technological developments. Employers are having trouble fulfilling vacancies for specifically trained personnel. This adds to the challenge of stimulating and facilitating mobility between sectors, for instance a move from the care sector to the hospitality industry. As a result of the changing demand for skills, there is an increasing mismatch between supply and demand on the labour market. At present, the education system is not geared to ‘lifelong learning’. Instead, people are trained according to a ‘just in case’ model, acquiring only the knowledge and skills which they are anticipated to need for particular jobs. We want to shift to a system where people develop the required skills and knowledge in the practical field, or ‘on the job’ – that is, according to a ‘just in time’ model.

The issue:
Develop a tool to help close the skills gap between the MBO-trained segment of the workforce and specific positions by means of ‘learning on the job’.
One option would be that employers offer MBO graduates a trial period as an opportunity to develop the skills required for a position.

Specific criteria that the startup should take into account in devising its bid:

  • The focus is on MBO, post-MBO (not only youth but the total MBO-trained workforce) and lifelong learning;
  • Must apply the just-in-time principle: develop skills on the job in response to employer demand, for a real position;
  • There must be a validation system for the acquired skills;
  • It should not be tied to curricula/a specific time in the school calendar or other regular education methods.
  • Make the training courses ‘employer-driven’ (must fulfil an immediate employer’s need), responsive (continuous improvement of the training course) and on-demand (not tied to school calendars or the curriculum but available to start at any moment);
  • Continually measure the effect of the solution to help improve the process of matching demand and supply on the platform;
  • Focus area for Startup in Residence is the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area.

Specific supplementary (suitability) criteria/competencies to be met by employee(s) of the startup in order to bid on this issue, evidenced in the bid by means of a reference:

  • The platform should in any case be offered in Dutch, optionally also in English if this proves relevant. A good command of the Dutch language is therefore required.

Issued by: Amsterdam Economic Board, Economie