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Microsoft announces partnership with the Brazilian government to train workers

Microsoft intends to qualify up to 5.5 million Brazilians in three years

Carlos da Costa, special secretary for productivity, employment, and competitiveness at the Ministry of Economy. Photo: Screenshot/Microsoft Teams
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  • The initiative is part of a Microsoft program called “Mais Brasil”, which aims to contribute to the country’s economic growth;
  • Ministry of Economy intention is that the partnership raises Brazilian professionals knowledge at the level of OECD countries.

In a videoconference on Tuesday, Microsoft announced a partnership with the Brazilian Ministry of Economy to connect workers with job opportunities. This will be done through a free digital training for up to 5.5 million people. Also, the goal is to assist in the employability of up to 25 million Brazilian workers, through an update of the National Employment System (Sine, in its Portuguese acronym), based on artificial intelligence.

The initiative is part of a Microsoft program called “Mais Brasil”, which aims to contribute to the country’s economic growth. The platform, implemented in partnership with the NGO Softex, will offer more than 20 technology courses at different levels. Called “Escola do Trabalhador 4.0 (Worker’s School 4.0)”, the e-learning platform uses Microsoft Community Training tool.

The Ministry of Economy told LABS that it expects the service to be available within 4 months, but didn’t specify how the workers will be able to access the platform.

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Microsoft also donated cloud credits to help improve the SINE platform. Sine’s update was led by BizApp and will use artificial intelligence to connect people and their skills to job opportunities and suggest qualification courses. “This partnership aims to look at the individual, evaluate skills and knowledge, connect him or her with existing vacancies, propose courses that will complement if they do not have enough skills to apply for existing vacancies,” explains Tânia Cosentino, president of Microsoft Brazil.

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Cosentino stressed that better qualification implies an increase in income. “We have different programs, this is for qualifying the large mass of workers in our country and it ranges from digital literacy to more specialized training,” she said.

According to the firm, the platform will be available to Brazilians across the country: 58 Microsoft instructors will offer personalized guidance for up to 315,000 people. Carlos da Costa, special secretary for productivity, employment, and competitiveness at the Ministry of Economy said these courses are part of a large update that will happen within Sine. The Ministry of Economy, however, said it would not make such training mandatory for applying for unemployment insurance.

“As the worker takes more courses and more qualification programs, he is better prepared for the challenges of the labor market. Brazil will be much more productive depending on much more qualified workers. Now we begin a new phase for the worker Brazilian population to be at least as well qualified as the median of OECD countries,” he said.

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Costa said that Microsoft was chosen because the company was willing to contribute without the government having financial costs. “The fiscal situation of the Brazilian government is not easy. We will go through this, but now we don’t have capital,” he said. Besides, Microsoft assured that the platform would not require investment in the future. “Many companies offered solutions, but they were only temporary, and they would certainly require more investment in the future,” he added.

Finally, the government was looking for a provider that had a technology that is used by professionals in sufficient volume, in addition to the availability to customize the tool for the Brazilian reality. “Brazil is very specific. Our need for qualification starts at a low level”. Cosentino added that Brazil trains 30,000 professionals less than the market needs per year. This can put the country in a low ranking in global competitiveness ones.

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