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Since 2017, Mr Tan, 38, had been running a board game shop that welcomed families and friends for leisurely play and camaraderie.
Playtime ended, however, when the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020. Mr Tan shifted his business online, but he also knew he had to develop a plan for the long term. Contemplating the uncertain timeline of the pandemic, Mr Tan thought: “What if the pandemic persists for a year, or even two?” Driven by these concerns, he decided to return to the corporate world.
Formerly a project management professional, Mr Tan charted a return to the field. Knowing that he had to update his skill set to compete in the present-day job market, he enrolled for courses in Agile and project management at NTUC LearningHub.
“Tech is an ever-evolving sector. What you learnt today can become obsolete tomorrow,” he explained. “This is something I tell my friends – that I must know ‘what is happening tomorrow, yesterday’. That’s why my motto is to never stop learning.”
Armed with his newfound proficiencies, Mr Tan secured a role as an assistant project manager in the IT software development sector in 2021. Today, as a project manager, he attributes his success in the field to the courses he undertook at NTUC LearningHub, which enhanced his value as an employee.
The knowledge he acquired remains acutely relevant to his current work: “I am engaged in various projects that span the gamut from Waterfall to Agile methodologies. Not all companies in Singapore have embraced the Agile approach, and hence, I need to enlighten my clients on its benefits, such as how Agile methodology enables iterative adjustments, resulting in outcomes that align more closely with their expectations.”
During his time at NTUC LearningHub, he had the opportunity to interact with peers from tech and non-tech backgrounds. “I was particularly inspired by a fellow course mate who was a senior in his late 50s,” he recalled. “He exemplified what it means to never stop learning.”
Taking this motto on board, Mr Tan chose to continue upskilling even beyond the pandemic. Last December, he signed up for NTUC LearningHub’s Project Management Institute (PMI)-Agile Certified Practitioner course: “PMI is the gold standard in project management and possessing this credential will propel me even further in my career.”
BECOMING MORE AGILE IN TECH