Friday, December 29, 2006

Retailers To Employ 1,000 Jobless Grads Annually. But Why The Delay?

Up to 1,000 unemployed graduates will be offered jobs annually by six retail groups via a commercial training and recruitment scheme initiated by the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs.

The retail groups are three hypermarkets, Tesco, Carrefour and Giant, along with three departmental stores, Jusco, Mydin and The Store.

The first batch of trainees, selected from a pool of unemployed graduates who applied for the scheme, would begin their training for at least six months with those outlets early next year followed by job placements, the minister, Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said.

"The Train and Recruit Programme is a joint public-private sector initiative to reduce the number of jobless graduates in the country by encouraging them to develop a career in the retail sector with outlets such as these as entry points," he added in a statement today.

"Malaysia has a vibrant retail industry with annual growth prospects pegged at around 6.8 per cent, which equates to tremendous employment opportunities with varying levels of skills required to fill the managerial, marketing and administrative posts as new outlets open and existing ones expand.

"Through this programme, we intend to quickly meet the needs of the business community while at the same time promote careers in retailing by giving these graduates hands-on experience in working at world-class retail outlets," he said.

The minister said the scheme also served as a good training ground if these graduates later opted to venture on their own into the retail business.

During the training programme, conducted at the retailers' training centres, trainees will undergo classroom courses on retailing and on-the-job-training which include customer service, merchandise display and inventory management.

Upon completion, trainees will then be interviewed for permanent employment.

Shafie said: "The government has taken active steps to ensure that labour market conditions remain positive and unemployment among graduates kept low via various graduate training schemes.

"To this end, the ministry will continue its efforts in creating more job opportunities while assisting retailers to meet their manpower requirements."

He noted that about a million new jobs were projected to be created under the Ninth Malaysia Plan, of which 2.4 per cent would be from the retail sector.

Interested applicants can apply to the ministry by contacting 03-88826263, e-mail to or go direct to the participating retailers which will advertise the vacancies from time to time. School-leavers are also welcomed to apply.

***** What the minister said is however not new and in fact as early as August this year he had proudly mentioned this scheme. He even said that 700 graduates would be trained in 2006 alone! He also envisaged that 1500 of them would be trained next year although now he has trimmed that figure to 1000. Either the outlets aren't too serious about the whole thing and are being coerced by the government or the ministry has not been 'on the ball' in getting things done. View the minister's August 8th 2006 statement HERE.

Image - dmc500hats



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