Recognizing workers skills in Samoa

The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Labour and the Apprenticeship Council of Samoa have been running a trade testing scheme, offering workers who achieved their present status in their job by experience only, a platform to obtain formal recognition of their skills.

News | 19 February 2013
Workers who successfully pass a trade test will get an authoritative certificate of proficiency in their trade at varying levels of skill which will give them a recognized status, not only in the industry in which they are employed but also, in the case of workers employed by Government Ministries and by the Public Service Commission.

Ms. Tiamatautu Fili from Savaii Metal Industries Hardware, who recently completed the programme with a trade certificate in plumbing & sheet metal fabrication, became only the second female graduate since the trade test scheme programme began in 1972.
A mother of three, with another on the way, Ms. Fili said she is very fortunate to have a very supportive husband who was able to assist with housework. “I did not have any problems at all being the only female in a male dominated environment”, she added. She looks forward to the day when she will be able to run her own business or use her trade to find employment abroad.

The ILO was invited to be part of the graduation ceremony. Mr. Aliferti Bulivou, Programme Officer, ILO Pacific said “This scheme aims at up skilling those already in the workforce and could be replicated in other Pacific Island Countries.” “We are looking forward to seeing more women joining the trade testing scheme as Ms. Fili has proven that there is no barrier to women working in a male dominated environment.”

To be eligible to take a trade test candidates must have at least five years’ experience in the trade in which he/she seeks to take a test in. Trade Testing is available in the following trades:
  • Construction and Joinery Furniture
  • Plumbing and Sheet Metal
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Welding and Fabrication
  • Fitting and Machining
  • Electrical