Case Study: Identifying emerging skill needs and building a talent pipeline to power Thailand’s digital transformation

Asia, 7 July 2022 – While Thailand has made good progress in the push for a digital future, propelled by its 20-year National Master Plan for Digital Development, its Thailand 4.0 ambition rests heavily on the country’s ability to address its digital skills gap.


According to a recent report by the World Bank, the shortage of skilled talent due to a combination of mismatched skills and an inefficient technical and vocational education and training system, is a key challenge affecting Thailand’s future growth prospects and economic competitiveness.


In light of the new labor market demands to drive Thailand’s digital transformation, Mercer, a global consulting leader in talent, health, retirement, and investments, partnered the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation (MHESI) in Thailand, to help the Thai government identify emerging skills needs and build a future talent pipeline for the country.


Known as the ‘Lift Skill Thai Labor Force Project’ which will be rolled out in three phases over two years, the partnership leverages Mercer’s data-driven insights and consulting expertise to develop a roadmap for MHESI to reshape the higher education system and strengthen the capabilities for Thailand’s future labor force.


The first phase of the project was completed in May 2022, where Mercer analyzed the workforce capability demand in Thailand’s S-curve industries – high potential industries such as Digital, Bioenergy & Biochemicals and Future Mobility, expected to grow rapidly in the next 10 years.


Through dedicated focus group discussions, Mercer found that besides emerging tech skills such as robotics and automation, cybersecurity and data science, the current workforce in Thailand also lacks soft skills such as having a growth mindset and the ability to adapt to change. This made it challenging for businesses to seize new opportunities in the transition to a digital-first world and grow sustainably.


For the second phase of the project, Mercer and MHESI is now leveraging these insights to engage universities and institutes of higher learning to start a pilot capability development program, with specific learning solutions and course curricula for students matching the demand for future skills that the private sector needs.


In the third and final phase of the project, Mercer will then monitor the program’s implementation, to ensure meaningful impact for MHESI by building a solid career path for new undergraduates entering the workforce.


Prof. Dr. Supachai Patumnakul, Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry said, "The Thai education system must adapt to digitalization because our higher education courses do not meet the industry or the country’s needs. Thus, the key objective of the Lift Skill Thai Labor Force Project is to create new or adjust existing curricula to help with upskilling the Thai labor force."


The partnership between Mercer and MEHSI is core to Mercer’s commitment to help organizations address growing demand for new skills and address employability challenges due to the acceleration digital transformation fueled by the COVID-19 disruption.


Juckchai Boonyawat, Mercer’s CEO in Thailand, said, “We are delighted to be part of this project to help the Thai government be more resilient in the new world of work. Bringing the public and private sectors together in this upskilling journey, helping them to pick out where the skill gaps are, and putting programs in place to build a future talent pipeline, is an important first step for Thailand and a significant achievement for Mercer.”


Get in touch with us today if you would like to find out more about keeping up with the pace of digital transformation and emerging skill needs.


About Mercer 

Mercer believes in building brighter futures by redefining the world of work, reshaping retirement and investment outcomes, and unlocking real health and well-being. Mercer’s approximately 25,000 employees are based in 43 countries and the firm operates in 130 countries. Mercer is a business of Marsh McLennan (NYSE: MMC), the world’s leading professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy and people, with 83,000 colleagues and annual revenue of approximately $20 billion. Through its market-leading businesses including Marsh, Guy Carpenter and Oliver Wyman, Marsh McLennan helps clients navigate an increasingly dynamic and complex environment. For more information, visit Follow Mercer on LinkedIn and Twitter.



1 PIP VI consists of a US vehicle for US investors and a Luxembourg vehicle for non-US investors. This press release does not constitute an offer to invest in any Mercer private markets investment vehicle. PIP VI closed in Q4 2021.