As the importance of training In-Service workers was emphasized in the late 1980s, the standard for imposing the training obligation was changed from the number of employees to the total payroll. However, In-Service worker training did not get much attention before the Asian financial crisis struck in the late 1990s. The vocational skills development project for In-Service workers was activated in earnest in 1995 when the obligatory in-plant vocational training system was abolished and integrated into the employment insurance system. In other words, Korea finally introduced a system that obligated all enterprises to pay training levies as part of employment insurance premiums and gives such training levies back to those that provide training to cover their training costs. The vocational skills development project for In-Service workers was greatly reinforced by adopting this incentive-based funding approach and accommodating demands from employers who were the main providers of financial resources. (The rest omitted)
Vocational training for incumbent workers to upgrade their skills and knowledge is one of major components of the vocational training system. As a country’s economy advances, the importance of training in-service workers also increases. This KSP module explains major policies and programs like the employer-initiated training program, training consortium for SMEs, and individual employee-initiated training program that have been actively used in Korea. By reviewing what Korea has experienced in vocational training for incumbent workers through these policies and programs, developing countries can get meaningful implications for designing and implementing their own training policies to upgrade current workers’ skills and knowledge.