Ontario should focus on expanded educational capabilities: HRPA

Group presents four key ideas to build strong workforce ahead of provincial election

Ontario should focus on expanded educational capabilities: HRPA
Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford speaks during a pre-election rally in Ottawa on April 16. REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Ontario should be focused on expanding educational capabilities, strengthening human capital investment, establishing a more efficient government and re-imagining workforce regulations, according to a report from the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA).

Ahead of a provincial election June 7, the association released Ideas 2018: Making Ontario a Human Capital Leader looking at how the political parties can ensure the province continues to be competitive and attract and retain the best talent.

"The decisions made by the next government will determine our economic future," said Scott Allinson, vice-president of public affairs at HRPA. "All parties must commit to making our workforce more competitive and make decisions that will both prepare our youth for tomorrow's workforce and create more well-paying jobs right here in Ontario."

More than 41 per cent of respondents said their entry-level hires over the last year had not been sufficiently prepared to do the jobs they were hired for by their pre-hire education, found the survey of more than 3,000 HRPA members. Recommendations to address this challenge include:

  • Make experiential learning mandatory
  • Encourage small and medium-sized business to participate in experiential learning programs.
  • Reimagine Ontario's education system by teaching students the integrated capabilities needed for future jobs rather than individual subjects.

HRPA is also calling on all political parties to reform the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario to prevent frivolous claims, which bog down the process for those claims with merit, according to the association, which called for steps to be taken to streamline the process, including introducing mandatory pre-screening for all complaints before any action is launched.

"It's essential that all workers are treated fairly and in accordance with the Human Rights Code, yet 94 per cent of our members agree that Ontario must implement reforms to better identify repeat and unfounded claims," said Allinson. "The current system is overburdened and is costing organizations thousands in unnecessary legal fees and these reforms will help address this and ensure claims with merit are quickly addressed."

The full report can be found here: Ideas 2018: Making Ontario a Human Capital Leader.

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