Over the past eight years, the Portuguese footwear sector has hired over 10 000 new workers. A reality that may be further strengthened with the new training initiatives being developed by the Cluster
The Portuguese Footwear Association (APICCAPS), the Training Centre for the Portuguese Footwear Industry (Academia de Design e Calçado) and the Portuguese Footwear Technological Centre (CTCP) are working together to further enhance the training opportunities for the Portuguese Footwear Cluster.
“The footwear is changing on the international scene. Therefore, we need to attract new values, as well as recycle knowledge, so our companies remain at the forefront and become a worldwide reference in the manufacture of footwear, being able to quickly respond to the market needs and by providing an excellent service associated with the product”, highlighted Luis Onofre, President of APICCAPS, adding: “The investment in training will be one of our strong focus the next years”.
Attract young talents. Customized training. Recycling knowledge. Acquiring new skills. These are the areas in which Academia de Design e Calçado is investing, in order to enable training option that are aligned to the companies’ specific demands. One of the main areas now being developed is linked to customized training, essentially designed for companies and the training of workers in their workplace, whether to improve skills or to get new qualifications: “We are significantly investing in this area. We have been working closely with all involved so that when a company needs an employee for a specific area, we are able to find the most adequate professional and guarantee their training and placement in the company”, highlighted Eduardo Costa, Director of Academia. He underlines that the training provided “is free of charge for the companies and allows to fulfill immediate needs”. The professional training is also included: “This is intended to people who wish to improve a certain field of knowledge or obtain a new qualification”.
Other courses being developed by the Cluster aim to “boost the re-entry of the unemployed back into the labor market, through a rapid integration in short-term training initiatives” and the certified modular training, that “aims to update and improve the theoretical and practical knowledge of the adult population”.
The training courses are already underway and provide school and professional certifications, giving an advance to those looking for a full integration in the labor market. There are also Technological Specialization Courses (CET), which “allow the acquisition of training at post-secondary level and aim to respond to the labor market needs at middle management level”, highlighted Eduardo Costa. Later this year, several technological specialization courses will be promoted, in areas such as design, network management, robotics and industrial control, accounting and taxation, international trade or quality management, environment and safety, among others. “These are areas where there has been a growing interest and the Academy is able to provide such knowledge”.
Captivating new talents for the Industry
After the campaign developed in 2017, “Feeling Sexy? Join the sexiest industry in Europe”, several initiatives ae being prepared by the Portuguese Footwear Cluster: “We have several actions scheduled in schools. These are continuing actions. We must be able to present the potential of our industry to the young public and be a real option for their future careers”, stated Eduardo Costa.