Labor Market: Revolution and Challenges

Faced with the sudden change that the new normal generated in companies, employees are challenged to increase their skills to work remotely, adapt to more flexible contracts and refine their technological skills and cognitive qualities.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Telecommuting has become an everyday occurrence among companies in the region, which have had to adjust to the restrictions imposed by governments due to the outbreak of covid-19.

According to specialists, this is a time for workers to analyze the hard and soft skills that the market will require and learn them, or improve them if they already possess them. Ideally, in this context of social distancing, it is important to take advantage of online training options.

You may be interested in "Potential Market for Educational Services"

Waldo Tapia, senior pension specialist at the Labor Markets Division of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) in Panama, explained to that "... The world of work is changing radically and both workers and companies are going to have to adapt. There are occupations and tasks that are changing. While the tourism sector is laying off staff, there are others that are becoming a genuine channel for temporary employment. So, in the face of this uncertain future that the pandemic brings, many workers are going to have to adapt, update and re-equip themselves to return to the labor market."

Regarding the profile of employees sought by the companies, Claudia Escobar, manager of ManpowerGroup in Panama, said that "... Companies are looking for people with better reasoning skills, problem solving and teamwork, as well as skills such as oral and written communication."

In the current scenario, it is predicted that the labor market will increase the offers of temporary proposals for projects and with more flexible salaries, Escobar explained to the weekly.

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More on this topic

From Wage-Earning Employment to Project-based Work

March 2021

The labor market reports a structural change, as fewer and fewer people are being paid a fixed salary for their work, while at the same time the number of employees earning per project is increasing.

Although the trend has been reported globally for several years, the pandemic accelerated this process, as the economic crisis generated by the Covid-19 outbreak destroyed thousands of formal jobs.

Labor Market: Bill Moves Forward

February 2021

In Panama, the first debate was approved in the first debate of the legislative project that intends to gradually reintegrate the employees to their companies, the same that have already restarted their activities and that in 2020 suspended labor contracts due to the crisis caused by the covid-19 outbreak.

The bill legalizing the gradual reintegration of suspended contract workers to their companies, which will be in force until the end of the year, has been pending in the National Assembly since February 8, after being submitted to the Presidency by the Minister of Labor, Doris Zapata.

Contract Suspension: Another Extension in Panama

July 2020

In this scenario of economic crisis, the Ministry of Labor has extended for the fourth time and for 30 more days, the provision that allows companies in the country to suspend the contracts of their employees.

Executive Decree No. 100 of July 1, 2020 authorized a further extension of the temporary suspension of the effects of employment contracts, which will apply automatically for a period of 30 calendar days in companies whose operations have not been reactivated according to the plans for a gradual return to economic activity, reported the Labor Ministry.

Workforce Automation: More Threat Than Opportunity

December 2018

Although new jobs will emerge, technological changes will have a strong impact in the Central American region, where there is a high proportion of jobs with a high risk of automation.

According to forecasts made by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), in 2018 it was estimated that 75% of workers in Guatemala and El Salvador are in high-risk automation jobs.

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