Postal and Telecommunications services - Training and retraining

Briefing note | 01 September 2011

Sector Postal and Telecommunications sector


In the context of rapid change in African telecommunications, two Regional Training Seminars on Skills and Employability in Telecommunications Services were held at the École Nationale Supérieure des Postes et Télécommunications, in Yaoundé, 30 July-4 August 2007. One course focused on enhancing commercial activities and customer service, while the other examined technological developments.

participants at the skills seminar
Training needs in the telecommunications industry have been completely transformed around the world in the past decade by the development of the Internet and mobile telephony, along with other new technologies, privatization and deregulation. Further changes are underway as Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP), mobile, public switched data network (PSDN), and public switched telephone network (PSTN) technologies are coexisting and beginning to converge in Next Generation Networks (NGN). New competition is also emerging from VOIP service providers. These developments have significant implications for employment, labour relations and work organization in telecommunications services, as enterprises adapt to changes in their markets, and their workforces need to develop new competencies to ensure their continued employability. In Africa, these developments will have a significant impact in the next few years, as efforts to bridge the digital divide are helped by the boom in mobile telephony, and new infrastructure necessary for high-speed Internet connections.Success in postal and telecommunications services is dependent upon developing significant, future-oriented skills, in which ILO constituents cooperate in a positive approach towards training for employability and change. Lifelong learning can help avoid skills shortages, improve job quality and satisfaction, enhance opportunities, meet consumers’ requirements and improve quality of service. It is essential to encourage dialogue on the content of training, commitment by workers to their own skill development, and equal opportunities in access to skills development.