Co-ops provide jobs. In their own little way, these co-ops contribute to job opportunities for the unemployed especially in the country side. The records of CDA will show that there are almost 5 thousand individuals that are employed and working in various co-ops around the region not to mention the officers and committee members that are paid on a per diem basis. One co-op in particular, the ADTEMPCO, has probably the highest number of regular employees among all the co-ops in the Region as of December 2018 with 435 individuals.
To date, there are 43 large co-ops and five of these are already billionaires. As the co-op grows, more jobs are created and additional manpower becomes inevitable. That is why I encourage co-op officers and managers to intensify co-op growth and development. If the co-op grows, the operations and services expand. And that creates more jobs as a consequence. It is an indication of a growing local economy and contributes to the economic prosperity of the country.
One good thing about co-ops is that, it is not owned by rich businessmen or multinationals. It is a local enterprise in the community. Therefore, the growth and development of these co-ops redound to the benefit of the community and not to a single person or a family. That is why it also needs combined efforts from the local government, National Government Agencies and the community to support their growth and sustainability. The local government should provide a conducive business environment for co-ops to grow robustly.
As the operations and business transactions of the co-op continuously expand and increase, they need competent manpower. As the business gets complicated, these co-ops need experts. People who knew what they are doing. Enhancement training for their existing employees may no longer be enough, they need to hire people with the necessary know-how in the business. In this age, we can no longer rely on our previous knowledge 20 years ago.
One of the necessary positions in these growing co-ops is in the area of Human Resource Management and Development. They need HR professionals to look into the competence and skills of employees and the hiring of new employees. These co-ops also need IT experts to make business processes faster and easier. They need people who are skilled in managing information, data, and communications. In fact, co-ops need management consultants already and investment planners. They even need people who are knowledgeable on asset management.
If we make good on our co-ops, sustain and expand them, then there are employment opportunities for our fellow Filipinos especially our children. In this era of difficulty of finding a job, we in the co-op movement should help create jobs. If we have thriving co-op businesses, then our graduates don’t have to go far to look for jobs.
So that co-ops will truly be a part of nation building, we are also encouraging co-ops to provide livelihood and entrepreneurial training for their members and even skills training. That can easily be arranged now that CDA and TESDA is under the umbrella of DTI.