For whom occupational standards are?

The amendments concerning the mandatory occupational standards, which are preparing to the Labour code, won’t forbid operating not at occupational work. However the demands to employees by education level, years of experience and set of basic skills will be standardized.

To employers it will be offered to apply new standards while developing human resource administration plans, which define the requirements to a specific position, and also while drawing up the employment agreements, manning table and tariffing of labour remuneration.

Such innovations will affect not on all fields of activity. It is supposed that since the 1st January 2016 the mandatory occupational standards will be extended on civil servants and employees of companies, in authorized capital of which the share of government is more than 50%. However by 2020 the innovations will be applied to employees of the rest of companies.

Thus, the panic concerning the closest dismissal of employees, the qualification certificates of which are not correspond to a position held, is premature. According to chairman of the Committee on labor, social policy and veterans affairs Olga Batalina, the main aim of the mandatory occupational standards is to show the requirements, to which you should be ready if you plan to work within a particular specialty. Actually the occupational standards should replace the qualifying references, which are out of date for today as the number of qualifications on the employment market for the last years has significantly increased.

At the same time there are no guarantees that the law will not be improved in the nearest future and the employees of different age and qualifications will not be obligated to confirm its specialty by regulatory experts certification. Today discussions regarding the introduction of a professional examination for qualification confirmation are held among experts. To achieve this aim, a network of independent certification centers can be constructed. The grade, which is obtained in such center, will serve as a special passport of professional viability of the job applicant.

Introduction of professional standards is not Russian know-how. Since the early nineties the development, improvement and implement of occupational standards is a worldwide practice. While developing of own standards, the most countries are guided by the experience of Great Britain, where the quality assurance system of workforce has branched structure, in which occupational standards are just one of the elements. The system also includes: the network of Councils for development of industrial qualifications, the councils define and predict the key skills and knowledge needed for country's economy; professional education and training programs; qualification board, which consists of 6 levels and combines all possible ways of education and vocational preparation, and others.

In Australia the similar document is called – Educational Units. This is the number of approved standards, which allow to estimate the employee’s qualification. As against the British standards, Australian standards describe necessary professional skills and knowledge. However the process of education and keeping it at the proper level is not regulated.

One of the oldest and effective projects of occupational standards is active in Canada within almost more than a half of century and is called Red Seal. It gives the employment opportunities in any region of Canada regardless of the place where the qualification was received and also promotes the mobility of workers. In order to receive the Red Seal you must pass the special exam, the content of which is based on specially created professional standards. Today this experience is the most interesting for Russian experts as the way of further development of professional standardization program.

Ruble and MICEX index answered in their own way on the Russia’s junk rating made by S&P and Moody’s

In February, after the longstanding fall, the average monthly official ruble exchange rate for the first time since the last summer strengthened by 1% to average monthly January rate, to euro by 2,7%.

In 2014 there was a rapid devaluation of ruble. Following the results of the year the annual average exchange rate (38,6 RUB for 1 USD) exceeded the indicator of 2013 by 21% (31,9 RUB for 1 USD). The ultimate negative trend was registered in November, December 2014 and in January 2015 when the ruble depreciated by 13,3%, 20,7% and 16,8% correspondingly.

The same situation happened concerning euro when the annual average exchange rate of ruble “lost ground” to European currency by 20,3% (42,4 RUB for 1 EUR in 2013, 51 RUB for 1 EUR in 2014).

ruble exchange rate

Figure. Change in average monthly official USD and EUR rates to previous period, %

In February 2015 we observe the refraction of the negative trend, when the ruble for the first time since June 2014 has strengthened. It happens against the background of improvement of world oil price environment and certain stabilization of situation in Ukraine after the Minsk Protocol.

Further situation concerning the ruble exchange rate will mostly depend on stability of ascending trend of raw material price. Sanctions of the Western countries and lowering of rated by international rating agencies play a small part.

Table. Dynamics of the average monthly exchange rate, set by the Central Bank of Russia
DateAverage montly official exchange rate of the Central Bank, RUB for 1 USDChange to previous period, %Average official exchange rate of the Central Bank, RUB for 1 EURChange to previous period, %
January, 2014 33,8 2,8 46,1 2,3
February, 2014 35,2 4,3 48,1 4,4
March, 2014 36,2 2,7 50,0 4,0
April, 2014 35,7 -1,5 49,2 -1,6
May, 2014 34,8 -2,3 47,8 -2,9
June, 2014 34,4 -1,1 46,9 -2,0
July, 2014 34,6 0,5 47,0 0,2
August, 2014 36,1 4,2 48,1 2,4
September, 2014 37,9 5,0 49,0 1,8
October, 2014 40,8 7,6 51,8 5,7
November, 2014 46,2 13,3 57,7 11,5
December, 2014 55,8 20,7 68,8 19,2
January, 2015 65,2 16,8 75,3 9,6
February, 2015 64,5 -1,0 73,3 -2,7

The good news also comes from the market. Thus in February the MICEX index achieved 1837 points on closing. This figure became the maximum since April 2011. Due to this, displacement of news matters pleases. If earlier the market trembled after any negative decision of such agencies as S&P and Moody’s, which lowered sovereign investment rating of Russia to a junk one in January and February, or after overseas politicians’ statements concerning worsening of country’s investment climate, today such news go unnoticed and just leave the negative mood. This situation can be explained by political partiality of such characteristics, which in some cases doesn’t correspond to real economic climate, national debt rate and dynamics of industrial production.