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Future of Work: How to recruit, train, and retain employees.


Nicholas Wyman is an apprenticeship expert and CEO of the Institute for Workplace Skills and Innovation- a group of companies that first started operations in 1982 through the WPC Group.

He advises and develops programs for companies such as Nissan, Mercedes Benz, Citibank and Coca Cola on how to recruit, train, retain and “reskill” employees.

A hands-on leader in the field, Wyman is dedicated to closing the gap between education and employment around the world.

In addition to his consulting work, Wyman speaks to HR departments, trade associations, think tanks, high schools and colleges throughout the EU, Singapore, China, Australia, and the U.S. An engaging and animated speaker, Wyman shares front line stories that audiences can relate to and apply directly to their lives. He has spoken at the International Foundation Conference on Youth Philanthropy in Athens, Greece; the Global Lessons in Apprenticeships launch in Washington, D.C.; the Recharging the Youth Conference in New York, N.Y.; and several private corporate events in the U.S. and Australia.

Current work

Wyman is a regular media commentator whose articles have appeared in various industry journals. He began his career as an apprentice chef in a London restaurant and holds an MBA. He studied at the Harvard Business School and the Harvard Kennedy School. His book, Job U, is a practical roadmap exploring the myriad of unconventional and affordable pathways to fulfilling and rewarding careers.

Debunking the notion that a traditional college degree is the best or only path to wealth and success, his book is for anyone who wants to learn how to add value and be valued in tomorrow’s economy.

Talking Points

The New World of Work: Landing a Better Than Good Job in the Technological Age

Automation, robotics, big data, and artificial intelligence are profoundly changing the way we live. More importantly, they are changing the way we work and the way we learn. Join Nicholas Wyman to understand how the working world is changing, and understand what you must do to find and retain a secure place in it. Jobs in many industries are being altered, if not wiped out, by applications of technology. Though politicians rail against globalization and the off-shoring of work, half of lost jobs have been the direct result of automation. And there’s more to come. A recent Oxford University study predicts that 48% of existing jobs will be eliminated in the next decade as a direct result of automation and technological change. Think about that: almost every other person you pass on the street will be affected! Pessimists are already warning of a ‘jobless future.’ However, there is a positive side to this sea change, one that pessimists overlook. Technology is eliminating the boring, physically difficult, and dangerous aspects of many jobs. It is freeing people to handle higher order tasks, do their work faster, and perform with greater precision.

People without jobs, jobs without people

Today, around 800,000 Australians, many with university degrees, are unemployed, and this figure does not include those who are under-employed or have given up trying to find work. Estimates vary, but experts believe that this figure includes a further 1-1.5 million people. Yet 145,000 positions remain unfilled, and half of all Australian businesses say they have trouble finding people with the practical, technical, job-ready skills they need. Nicholas Wyman refers to it, the problem of “people without jobs and jobs without people.” Drawing on his International work with the organisations, governments, and educational institutions who are pioneering the most cutting-edge solutions to the skills-gap problem, Wyman offers a roadmap for how organisations, communities, and educators can come together to develop the human capital needed to keep our businesses innovative and profitable, our economy healthy and humming, and our nation sustainably competitive in today’s global economy.

Developing The Skills Employers Actually Need

We have all been sold on the myth that university is for everyone, and have been promised that a traditional degree is a guaranteed ticket to a well-paid, secure professional future. But the truth is, more often than not, a degree fails to deliver on that promise or pack the punch it used to. Employers hiring practices are changing as they transition to the 21st century ‘global’ economy. And this is impacting the way we educate. Wyman discusses the new and emerging opportunities that can only be found outside the traditional university model, in the domain of skills-based education, such as that found through dynamic vocational training courses, technical schools, Technical and Further Education (TAFE) and apprenticeship programs-in the educational pathways ready, willing and able to equip ambitious students with the job-ready skills that companies actually need.


  • CEO & Company Directors
  • Change Management
  • Future of Work


  • Futurists
With over 650 attendees, we were delighted that you focused on the skills gap in Nova Scotia and our region. The amount of Nova Scotia-specific research that you did was noted and appreciated. It was refreshing to hear your “Yes!” stories. Typing your points to our Yes Campaign hit a positive chord with the crowd as we always encourage business leaders to find ways to say yes to reignite Halifax’s economy. Your focus on apprenticeships strongly resonated with our membership as well. Throughout the evening, you reminded the audience that success can be found beyond tests and schooling. The five recommendations to close the skills gap were tangible take-aways that businesses can put into action right away. We are focused on retaining our youth and nurturing our skilled workforce, so your message is an important one for the business leaders of Halifax to hear. Halifax Chamber of Commerce
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