Student pairs during the Digital Explorer project in October 2019; Credit: IMS Luxembourg

On Thursday 13 February 2020, around 100 students, parents, education personnel and company employees gathered at the House of Startups for the "Digital Explorer Conference: Jobs of the Future".

Organised by IMS Luxembourg and Care Luxembourg, the Digital Explorer Conference provided an evening of reflection on changes in the world of work linked to its digitalisation. The emergence of new professions and the acceleration of the pace of change, mainly due to digitalisation, have raised questions such as how we can prepare and support this evolution to understand the new digital challenges. IMS Luxembourg and Care Luxembourg have joined forces to attempt to answer these questions through the Digital Explorer project, co-financed by the Ministry of National Education, Children and Youth and the Ministry of Labour, Employment and the Social and Solidarity Economy, as well as the European Social Fund. 

The evening reflected on the first edition that took place last autumn and offered participants keys to understanding the profound changes that await the world of work in the next five to ten years. Indeed, during DayCare in October 2019, 22 pairs of students aged between 16 and 18 and company employees were trained for one day as part of the first Digital Explorer Conference. In addition to this first immersion in the world of work for students, each pair had to sketch out the jobs of tomorrow in a world in full digital transition. Guided in their reflection by co-creation tools, the pairs were able to draw the outlines of a digital vision, the fruit of their observations, and thus try to provide elements of answers to initiate this digital transition within companies. 

In the opening session, different figures were invited to speak, including Mike Engel, Director of the Maison de l'Orientation, and Claude Tremont, Head of the Employment Department at the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social and Solidarity Economy. Respectively, they underlined the importance of guidance and the necessary changes in both the national education system and the labour market to ensure the integration of new generations into the labour market.

Three pairs formed during the last edition of the Digital Explorer project were then invited to talk about their experience during a round-table discussion. Employees and students were thus able to share what had most impressed them on that day and express their opinions on how they imagine working in a few years. In addition to cross-generational exchanges of views, the plurality of professions and sectors of activity enriched the debate: the medical biology sector with the Bionext Lab communication manager, the industry with a quality and digitalisation engineer from ArcelorMittal and the banking sector with the HR manager from Raiffeisen.

To close the evening, Christian Scharff, President of IMS Luxembourg and Partner People & Organisation Leader at PWC Luxembourg, shared his expertise. He resituated the context of the digital transformation of the world of work and the sectors most impacted, before outlining the collective challenges ahead. Indeed, the shortage of skills could have a negative impact on many companies soon: this would affect both current employees and young people leaving school, none of whom could be trained in professions that do not yet exist. The collaboration  of various stakeholders were thus called on to face this major societal challenge.

It is in this perspective that IMS Luxembourg and CARE Luxembourg will renew their Digital Explorer initiative, again in the framework of DayCare, on 28 October 2020.