Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz last week bared that the DOLE, through the National Wages and Productivity Commission, has effectively expanded its package of productivity programs consistent with the strategy to further strengthen DOLE capacity to assist firms towards the road to productivity.

In her keynote address at the awarding ceremonies of the 2013 Productivity Olympics at the Century Park Hotel in Manila–where the DOLE and the NWPC recognized micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) from the agribusiness, industry, and services sectors for their best productivity improvement practices–Baldoz announced she had instructed the NWPC and its Regional Tripartite Wage and Productivity Boards (RTWPBs) to upgrade and expand the package of productivity programs so that more MSMEs could avail of these.

“This is in relation to the strengthened implementation of DOLE’s wage policy reform, which advocates for a tighter link between pay and productivity,” she said, emphasizing that what makes the DOLE’s strategy more unique from the rest “is that all our productivity advocacy and capacity building interventions are offered free to the MSMEs.

She said that in 2010, the DOLE had first consolidated all training programs, and developed and deployed improved modules on quality and productivity technologies to strengthen productivity advocacy.

“We have also expanded coverage of the value-driven ISTIV Productivity Awareness Program to include  constructive and cooperative worker and employer relations modules from ILO’s Succeeding in Business Program.  The module is now called ISTIV Plus,” she said. I-S-T-I-V stands for Industrious, Systematic, Time-conscious, Innovative, and Strong Value for work.

Baldoz also said the Service Quality for Hotels and Restaurants Industry Program towards zero-error in attending to customers’ needs now also covers the tourism value chain, which includes airports/ports; gift shops; transport service; tourist guides; and local police. Preliminary demonstration of this enhanced module was done in Dapitan and Dipolog Cities, and Boracay Island.

“We are currently expanding our partnership agreement on Service Quality with the Department of Tourism to cover the value chain of the tourism industry. In recognition of providing quality service as a strategy to attract more tourists, the DOT has adopted a modified accreditation system, which requires tourist service providers, such as hotels, restaurants, and resorts to demonstrate quality service in order to secure DOT accreditation.  The DOT has institutionalized this arrangement,” Baldoz explained.

Other reforms the DOLE is implementing:

(1) Expansion of the training approach from the enterprise to the value chain to ensure a more holistic and seamless approach to training and to create a viral effect on the other industries in the chain. This is relative to the implementation of the 2nd tier or productivity-based incentive scheme.

(2) Launching of the DOLE’s green productivity program dubbed, Green ME (My Enterprise) Program, a strategy to enhance productivity performance and environmental sustainability.

(3) Provision of a productivity perspective in the development of training modules relative to the shift in new labor standards enforcement framework towards voluntary compliance. The newly-recruited 372 labor law compliance officers–who have been trained to advise, assist and guide enterprises towards voluntary compliance and, eventually, continuous improvement, growth, and competitiveness–will implement the new labor law compliance system using a mix of developmental and regulatory approaches to benefit MSMEs.

(4) Convergence of labor management cooperation schemes (NCMB) and productivity improvement programs (NWPC) to tighten the link between the promotion of LMC and capacity-building on productivity.

“MSMEs interested to avail of the new Integrated Productivity Program, or the ladderized approach, to productivity must undergo the foundational courses of Productivity 101 on basic productivity concepts and measurements, values awareness, and the 5S of good housekeeping. These are requirements for the more advanced productivity training programs,” Baldoz further elaborated.

Finally, she said the RTWPBs have been tasked to monitor post-implementation of productivity improvement programs as part of their strategy to tap potential Productivity Olympics nominees.

“With our expanded menu of productivity improvement programs, I hope many more MSMEs will embark on their own productivity journey for the country to attain competitiveness, progress, and inclusive growth,” she said.

END

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