A second launching workshop on the Development and Implementation of a National Reference Network for Assessing the Competence of the Workforce by Sectors and Regions took place on 12-13 May 2010 at BIA. The forum was organized within a project of the Human Resources Development Operational Programme, implemented by BIA, in cooperation with the Confederation of the Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria and Podkrepa Labour Confederation.
Over 50 representatives of regional and branch organizations, members of the Bulgarian Industrial Association, state institutions, consulting employment agencies, as well as Human Resources managers from leading companies participated in the two-day meeting.
The attendees were introduced to the essence, aims, structure, organization and management of the project; special emphasis was laid on possible working hypothesis and methodological methods for establishing Reference Units and Advisory Councils, as well as the Pilot Agents selection criteria and several challenges which the project's successful implementation faces.
A number of representatives from branch chambers, regional associations, and state institutions took part in the followed-up lively discussion and expressed their approval of BIA's initiative and their willingness to contribute adequately to the project. The participants posed various comments and raised specific questions concerning the organization and management of the project.
The participants recommended that Reference and Sector Units, specifically designed in tune with the Bulgarian culture and reality, be established, rather than foreign models be transplanted. The business sector preparedness to put into practice the would-be information system for assessing workforce competences was also discussed at length. It was pointed out during the forum that despite the economic crisis, there is still a tangible lack of qualified workforce in the country, which could be eliminated by initiating a more vigorous dialogue among state institutions, teaching organizations and the business.
A National meeting on BIA's project within the Human Resources Development Operational Programme shall be held in June. It will put for discussion the National reference network and units for assessing the workforce competences.