Singaporeans will soon have a new route to high-value careers in intellectual property (IP) and innovation, with the launch of the new Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) for IP Professionals.
The programme is a collaboration between Workforce Singapore (WSG) and IPOS, and is part of IPOS’ ongoing efforts to build IP and innovation expertise as the nation readies itself for an increasing demand for such skillsets as projected in the Committee on the Future Economy (CFE) Report. Studies have shown that jobs in IP-intensive industries pay 30 per cent higher than jobs in other fields.
The new PCP builds upon the successes of a previous similar programme for patent agents. It adopts a “place and train” model, where individuals are hired and trained for IP or innovation job roles in companies. This SGD$2.2 million programme provides course fee and salary support to train individuals with the skills to help enterprises translate their innovations and creations into products and assets.
A new training course is supported under this PCP. It is the SIM University’s (UniSIM) modular and skills-based graduate programme in IP and Innovation Management. Designed with mid-careerists in mind, modules taken under the UniSIM course can lead to a master’s degree or graduate diploma. Enrolment for the first cohort is now open till 31 May 2017, with the first round of interview and selection taking place in April 2017. The course commences in July 2017.
Potential PCP for IP Professionals applicant, Ms. Wendy Sim, is a new hire at Synergy IP Pte Ltd. A qualified accountant, Ms. Sim will undergo a career conversion to take on job functions in the field of business and IP management. She said, “With the ongoing focus on innovation, research and technology, I see a lot of potential in the IP industry. It is now possible for me to reskill and future proof my career in IP management with support from the PCP and my employer.”
Mr. Edmund Kok, Senior Patent Attorney of Amica Law LLC, a firm which participated in the previous PCP for patent agents, said, “We appreciate the support given to train and develop aspiring patent attorneys through the PCP, to meet Singapore’s growing manpower needs in this field, as our clients innovate and create new technologies. We also like that individuals for this programme bring with them valuable industry experience and knowledge from their previous jobs.”
Chief Executive of WSG, Mr. Tan Choon Shian, said, “In an innovation driven economy, IP assets are key to an organisation’s competitive edge and need to be managed appropriately. The launch of the PCP for IP professionals is timely, as it helps employers access a pipeline of talent with IP skillsets, and at the same time provides mid-career professionals the opportunity to build careers in a growing sector.”
Chief Executive of IPOS, Mr. Daren Tang, said, “Singapore needs people skilled in translating ideas and IP into products and assets. Such expertise in IP and innovation management will be of immense value to any enterprise that whose business model is centred around technology, brands, designs or content. We strongly encourage Singaporeans who are interested in building their careers and developing skills around innovation to seize this opportunity to take on exciting, high-value jobs that will be increasingly be in demand in Singapore and the region.”
Applications for the first intake of the PCP for IP Professionals will open from 20 March to 31 May 2017. More details on the PCP for IP Professionals are available at www.ipos.gov.sg/ippcp.