ICTs create new jobs, make labour markets more innovative –World Bank

Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are transforming the world of work, creating new job opportunities and making labor markets more innovative, inclusive, a report by World Bank has said. Click here for the latest labor info.

According to World Bank’s Chief Innovation Officer for Global ICT Development. Chris Vein,ICTs are influencing employment both as an industry that creates jobs and as a tool that empowers workers to access new forms of work, in new and more flexible ways.

He said: “The emerging ICT-enabled employment opportunities matter because countries around the world are looking to create more good jobs, which have positive economic and social implications for workers and for society”

The report said ICTs are providing new avenues for job creation that could help tackle global unemployment.

“For instance, the development of the mobile phone applications industry has created new opportunities for small- and mediumsized enterprises (SMEs). A firm that provides a digital application to the Apple app store, for example, gains access to over 500 million app store account holders.

“ICTs connect people to jobs. Online employment marketplaces are helping an estimated 12 million people worldwide find work by connecting them with employers globally. Babajob in India, Duma and M-Kazi in Kenya, and Souktel in the Middle East and North Africa are examples of job search services using internet- based and mobile tools. Such services empower workers by making labor markets more transparent and inclusive; for instance, Souktel targets low-income and marginalized communities”

The report also said that ICTs create opportunities, but also pose new challenges for workers and employers, by enabling new forms of work, adding that ICT also changes the structure of jobs, the way people develop their career, and the way they work.

“Many ICT-enabled jobs are temporary or contract-based, for example, leading to a separation of work from social safety nets such as health insurance or pensions. But, for young people especially, they offer a way into more formal careers, as well as providing a supplementary income”, the report said.

“The potential gains from ICT-enabled work are not without risks and challenges, but the implications of ICT for work are inevitable and will benefit those students, workers, firms, and governments who prepare for them.

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