Microsoft launches new initiatives to skill and scale AI transformation in Singapore

 |   Singapore News Centre

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Left to right: Mr. Chan Tsan, Chief Executive, Home Team Science & Technology Agency; Ms. Tham Loke Kheng, Chief Executive Officer, Mediacorp Pte Ltd; Mr. Chris Ong, Chief Executive Officer, Seatrium Limited; Mr. Jeremy Ong, Chief Executive Officer, NTUC LearningHub; Ms. Ngiam Siew Ying, Chief Executive Officer, Synapxe Pte Ltd; Mr. Ahmed Mazhari, President, Microsoft Asia; Mr. Chan Chun Sing, Minister for Education; Ms. Lee Hui Li, Managing Director, Microsoft Singapore; Mr. Desmond Tan, Deputy Secretary General, NTUC; Mr. Allen Lew, Chairman, Certis Group; Mr. Tan Kok Yam, Chief Executive, SkillsFuture Singapore

  • Announces skilling initiatives with SkillsFuture Singapore and NTUC LearningHub to empower businesses and employees with future-ready skills to thrive in an AI-enabled economy
  • Unveils Microsoft AI Pinnacle Program with five pioneering organizations to spearhead business and sectoral transformation to scale benefits of AI for organizations of all sizes through co-innovation of AI use cases and capability building
  • New collaborations with Enterprise Singapore and AI Singapore to help small and medium-sized enterprises accelerate adoption of Microsoft Copilot to boost productivity, and with IMDA on generative AI implementation for small and medium-sized enterprises

Singapore, 6 March 2024 – Microsoft is reinforcing its commitment to advancing AI capabilities for businesses and employees through new skilling initiatives with SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) and NTUC LearningHub. In addition, Microsoft also launched the Microsoft AI Pinnacle Program, starting with five pioneering organizations – Certis, HTX, Mediacorp, Seatrium, and Synapxe – to create real-world AI solutions that will drive transformative impact for organizations and key industry sectors.

To help organizations of all sizes scale the benefits of AI innovation, Microsoft will also collaborate with Enterprise Singapore (EnterpriseSG), AI Singapore, and the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) to enable small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to accelerate AI adoption.

Microsoft aims to play a key role in supporting Singapore’s AI skilling and scaling initiatives by empowering organizations and uplifting AI skills and capabilities of employees across all levels, as part of the national SkillsFuture movement. Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) were signed with the partners today, in the presence of Minister for Education Mr. Chan Chun Sing, and Deputy Secretary-General of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), Mr. Desmond Tan.

Driving AI skills enablement and adoption with SkillsFuture Singapore, Institute for Adult Learning, NTUC LearningHub, and Enterprise Singapore

Microsoft’s collaboration with SkillsFuture Singapore will benefit 2,000 SMEs over three years. It builds upon the strong foundation that Microsoft has done as a SkillsFuture Queen Bee to upskill SMEs in its network. The collaboration will deliver practical programs that will equip SMEs with the expertise needed to harness AI solutions, enabling them to transform, seize new opportunities and be future-ready in today’s dynamic business environment.

“We are very encouraged to see Microsoft stepping up to help equip our companies and workers with deeper skills in AI. This builds on the already solid work Microsoft has done as a SkillsFuture Queen Bee. This is also a timely initiative, coming in the wake of the budget announcement on the SkillsFuture Level-Up Programme. It takes a twin commitment by industry and Government to the SkillsFuture movement, to give Singapore workers the competence and confidence to adapt to change and to seize new opportunities. We look forward to more companies stepping up likewise,” said Mr. Tan Kok Yam, Chief Executive of SkillsFuture Singapore.

Microsoft will also partner the Institute for Adult Learning (IAL) to innovate and incorporate AI into adult education approaches. They will co-develop and test new AI tools and methodologies to enhance the learning experiences of adult learners.

The MoU with NTUC LearningHub marks a pivotal step toward upskilling NTUC members with fundamental and essential knowledge and skills in AI. Microsoft and NTUC LearningHub will partner to train up to 100,000 NTUC members in such AI skills to enhance their AI literacy understanding and ensure that they are ready for the changing workforce.

“This collaboration with Microsoft marks an important milestone for NTUC LearningHub as we empower our members with essential knowledge and skills to navigate the evolving landscape of artificial intelligence. Through this partnership, we have developed a series of digital and in-person training programs to drive AI knowledge and how it can be applied at the workplace. We are committed to ensuring that our members are ready for the future of work and to building a resilient workforce capable of harnessing the power of artificial intelligence for both professional and personal growth,” said Mr. Jeremy Ong, Chief Executive Officer at NTUC LearningHub.

In addition, Microsoft is collaborating with EnterpriseSG and AI Singapore to accelerate adoption of Microsoft Copilot by local SMEs, and curate industry collaboration events to uncover and scale impactful sectoral use cases of generative AI. The partnership also features co-development of resources to equip SME leaders to handle change management and redesign business workflows, as well as explore deeper and more customized AI use cases for their businesses in the longer term. These efforts will enable SMEs to scale the benefits of AI and improve their productivity and operations. Microsoft will further partner with IMDA to support digitally mature SMEs in accessing expertise and resources to implement generative AI solutions.

Mr. Soh Leng Wan, Assistant Chief Executive Officer, Manufacturing & Engineering, EnterpriseSG said, “EnterpriseSG is always keen to work with leading organizations to support local SMEs. AI has significant potential to enhance employee productivity and business workflows, and solutions like Microsoft Copilot can be an easy way for our SMEs to get started. Copilot will enable SME employees to streamline work processes and augment their tasks to free up time for higher-value work. We look forward to working closely with Microsoft and AI Singapore to curate industry-specific capability building programs and events that will support SMEs to harness AI at scale in their operations.”

Partnering leading organizations to drive transformation with AI and scale its benefits

The Microsoft AI Pinnacle Program aims to enable organizations in Singapore to realize scalable, impactful AI-powered solutions that will have transformative impact on their businesses and sectors. Starting with five pioneering organizations – Certis, HTX, Mediacorp, Seatrium, and Synapxe – the program will facilitate co-creation and co-innovation of AI use cases and foster an AI-first culture and ecosystem. Through this, the program aims to inspire new ways of work and support organizations in building capabilities to tap opportunities in the era of AI.

Leveraging Microsoft’s AI innovation factory and capabilities, industry-leading AI experts, and practitioners, the Microsoft AI Pinnacle Program includes:

  • Envisioning and prioritizing AI roadmap for strategic AI use cases with clear business ROI and outcomes
  • Operationalizing prioritized AI use cases to deliver business impact
  • Establishing an AI Center of Capabilities (CoC) that includes AI accelerators and toolsets, responsible AI framework and program governance
  • Incorporating AI enterprise skilling through comprehensive training programs

Furthermore, the participating organizations will have the opportunity to collaborate with Microsoft Research and partners within the Microsoft ecosystem on cutting-edge AI innovation.

The program also includes the rollout of Microsoft Copilot for business functions such as HR, finance, and marketing to drive AI adoption across organizations, especially for SMEs.

“Microsoft is excited to be collaborating with SSG and NTUC LearningHub to empower enterprises and employees with AI skills to thrive in the era of AI. We are also dedicated to making AI real and scaling its benefits for businesses of all sizes. By partnering with leading organizations under the Microsoft AI Pinnacle Program, we will co-innovate meaningful and impactful AI solutions and establish AI Centre of Capabilities for their respective organizations and sectors. Finally, in partnership with Enterprise Singapore, AI Singapore, and IMDA, we aim to accelerate and scale AI innovation for SMEs, as we enable every person and organization to achieve more,” said Ms. Lee Hui Li, Managing Director, Microsoft Singapore.

About Microsoft

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

Media Contacts:

Microsoft Singapore

Simran Sethi: [email protected]

Partner agency for Microsoft Singapore

Edelman: [email protected]