Women in STEM

ILO and Thailand enhance women’s access to technical skills in electronics industry

The International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Ministry of Labour of Thailand have developed a new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) training program for women workers in the electronics sector. Minister of Labour M.R. Jatumongkol Sonakul presided the commencement ceremony for the first graduates.

News | 26 September 2019
Commencement ceremony with Thailand Minister of Labour M.R. Jatumongkol Sonakul
Bangkok (ILO News) – After completing the first STEM training developed by the Department of Skills Development at the Ministry of Labour for women workers in Thailand, the graduates from the Data analytics and visualization for manufacturing course received their certificates from Minister of Labour M.R. Jatumongkol Sonakul today.

While presiding the commencement ceremony, Mr Jatumongkol Sonakul highlighted: “In the next 20 years, technological advances such as robotic automation and artificial intelligence will transform jobs and the skills workers need”.

The International Labour Organization estimates that 17 million jobs in Thailand (44 per cent of employment) are at risk of automation. Women, who are employed predominantly in jobs requiring low STEM skills, are more likely to be affected by the disruption than men.

In order to mitigate this impact of automation on women workers, the Department of Skills Development (DSD) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) worked together on a STEM related skills development programme for women workers. In the context of Thailand 4.0 development plan, the programme aims to invest in women’s capabilities and enhance their access to decent and productive employment. It is also in line with the objectives of the Decent Work Country Programme signed by the Ministry of Labour, employers and workers organizations early 2019.

Designed by the Empowerment of Women in Workplace program of the Department of Skills Development and ILO’s Women in STEM Programme, the training has been implemented in collaboration with a global leader in data storage with large manufacturing facilities in Thailand, Seagate Technology.

The course, targeting women in entry level jobs with low-STEM skills, supports the acquisition of knowledge, competencies and skills needed for women workers to collect, analyse and present in a visual manner manufacturing-related data for decision-making.  So far, 1,050 women workers at Seagate Technology plant in Korat, Sung Noen District, Nakhon Ratchasima province, completed the training programme.

“The International Labour Organizations works with the Ministry of Labour promoting an enabling environment for the growth of decent and productive employment in Thailand. This skills development program the Department of Skills Development in collaboration with the ILO developed puts women and the work they do at the centre of business practices. Investing in women workers capabilities enables women to thrive and equips them with relevant skills to help them advance in their careers”, said Mr Graeme Buckley, Director of the ILO Country Office for Thailand, Cambodia and Lao PDR and Office of the Decent Work Team for East Asia, South East Asia and the Pacific.

“The development of human capital is a priority of the 20-year national strategy which aligns with the Decent Work County Program that aims to develop a country that focuses on human resource development to build its competitiveness. In line with the workforce transformation policy”, said Minister M.R. Jatumongkol Sonakul, emphasizing the need to  adapt to technological and organizational changes.

Data analytics and visualization for manufacturing course

The training program was implemented by the Skills Development Institute 5, Nakhon Ratchasima, and Office of Skill Development of Prachinburi. The institute conducted a Data analytics and visualization for manufacturing training course with 36 hours of training targeting women workers in entry level jobs.
The training course was delivered at Seagate Technology plant in Korat and reached 35 groups of 30 trainees each with a total of 1,050 workers, during the period of May to September 2019. Competencies developed through the training course include:
  • set up functions, enter data and process information on manufacturing;
  • compile, categorize, calculate and verify data or information on manufacturing;
  • analyse manufacturing data and evaluate results to solve problems in the factory;
  • present data using visual aids to line managers.

For further information, please contact:

Mr Jordi Prat Tuca
Technical Officer, Enterprise Development and Skills
International Labour Organization