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Building a Knowledge-Based Economy Through Upskilling UAE National Workforce

EIBFS’s long-standing commitment to accelerate the UAE government’s Emiratisation efforts has contributed effectively to building a professional Emirati talent pool in banking and finance

By Jamal Al Jassmi, General Manager, Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies.

Jamal Al Jassmi, General Manager, Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies.

Being at the forefront of Emiratisation initiatives, the Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies (EIBFS) has managed throughout the years to create and develop learning solutions that align with the UAE vision and nationalization agenda of developing future-ready Emirati talent that can easily adapt with the constantly evolving financial sector.

Changes to the way businesses operate alongside the ongoing technological advancement are driving rapid change in the skills requirements for the financial services workforce while business priorities are being reshaped through new challenges such as adapting to the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals.

Therefore, it is important to identify and invest in future skills that can create highly skilled employees who can help financial institutions in addressing rapid technological and societal changes through recruiting new talents, reskilling, and upskilling their existing workforce.

Digital and technology awareness, data literacy and analytics, cybersecurity, and blockchain are some of the essential skills for securing the future success of financial services, meeting the talent development objectives of the industry, and tackling the ongoing skills gaps. While technical skills are essential but yet alone, they are insufficient. Behaviors such as creativity, innovation, and leadership skills are important to deliver what algorithms are incapable of.

In order to meet the current skills challenges, effective collaboration between employers, education providers, and the government is being promoted in the UAE through many partnerships and initiatives that aim to achieve sector growth and bring employment opportunities to the Emirati talent.

The UAE government has rolled out many initiatives to support and increase the number of Emiratis in the job market and their contribution to the economy by encouraging the public and private sectors to implement Emiratisation policies through quotas and incentives. Initiatives such as launching smart electronic platforms that provide career guidance, recruitment services, and training opportunities to develop the skills of job seekers.

Supporting UAE’s Emiratisation Drive

At EIBFS, our long-standing goal is to support the UAE’s government’s vision to build a knowledge-based economy through providing world-class education and training in banking and finance at local, regional, and international levels to skill, reskill and upskill UAE cadres to ensure that they remain up to date on current matters and capable of securing high-potential jobs in line with the latest classification system announced by the government to boost the Emirati workforce in the private sector

Contributing effectively towards Emiratisation in the banking and finance sectors is one of our main missions while our futuristic vision to understand the evolving nature of jobs and the related skills and competencies needed for future bankers around digital skills has been reflected in our 2022 Annual Training Plan to keep up with the rapid strides made in various domains such as  Blockchain, Artificial intelligence, Robotic Process Automation, and other emerging futuristic skills needed to develop a talent pool that is agile and future-ready.

The plan also focuses on the rise of Fintech and the future of banking in the region and beyond which will continue to drive disruptive business models in the financial services sector. The scope and application of Fintech have covered almost all key areas in the financial domain such as lending, investments, and payments, along with other domains like Regtech, Insuretech, Wealthtech, Blockchain, and Cybersecurity.

Our Annual Training Plan has been designed to act as a skills map for financial and banking professionals to deepen specialist skillsets to better serve the UAE’s growing banking ecosystem. The plan features a range of international certificates, professional certificates, Insight e-learning, and learning bundles. Trainees can opt for full-fledged courses, micro-learning modules, or self-paced learning options.

We have also partnered with various leading institutes and universities of the world, including the University of Oxford, Harvard Business School, Chartered Banker, UAE Human Resources Authority, UAE Ministry of Education, Chartered Insurance Institute, and Dubai Judicial Institute, among others to bring and offer the best programs and courses in banking and finance to the UAE.

Around 300,000 banking professionals received training at the institute during the past 38 years. In 2021, the institute trained 32,317 professionals of which 36 percent were Emirati bankers.

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