Industry 4.0 demands today’s talent to have digital skills. The East Ventures-Digital Competitiveness Index (EV-DCI) 2022 survey shows that almost 80 percent of Indonesian companies have made investments in ICT and digital transformation (especially for legacy corporates) a high priority. The Ministry of Communication and Information has estimated that Indonesia needs nine million digital talents in 15 years or an average of 600,000 digital talents per year.  

However, in a survey entitled Unlocking APAC’S Digital Potential: Changing Digital Skill Needs and Policy Approaches, only 19 percent of Indonesia’s workforce has the necessary digital skills. The lack of talent in this field is a challenge for Indonesia to move forward in the Industry 4.0 era, even as more organisations have embarked on their digital transformation journey.  

In SAP Indonesia, STAR program helps prepare the younger generation. Student Training and Rotation or STAR is an internship program that offers opportunities for students to develop new skills that can help them compete in the workforce later. STAR itself has been running in 13 countries since 1979 and this marks the first year STAR has been rolled out in Indonesia. 

STAR runs for one year with second year college students as participants. Through this, students in the IT and consulting fields will be better equipped and skilled for the future workforce. 

Adella Irawan, a STAR participant from Gadjah Mada University and currently placed in the Sales Division of SAP Indonesia, said that she felt proud to be able to get work experience whilst pursuing her undergraduate degree.  

“STAR is akin to a management training but focused on university students as participants and that’s why this is a very valuable experience for me. With the guidance of our mentors, I began to understand how to behave and communicate in the working world, especially in the technology sector,” said Adella. 

During the one-year internship program, participants get a chance to be rotated every 3 months, namely between Consulting, Customer Engagement, Solution, Sales, and ICA departments. Additionally, SAP’s e-learning platform aids STAR participants to sharpen their industry knowledge and technical skills. 

“Through STAR, I have the opportunity to better understand and help develop various SAP products and adjust them according to customer needs,” said Azka Edy, a STAR participant also from Gadjah Mada University. With his team of friends, Azka assisted in developing software products and solutions from the time they were in the first year at university. “The SAP e-learning platform provides a variety of courses – public speaking, for example – which helps me perform much better in presentations.” 

STAR itself is SAP Indonesia’s response to the government’s move to develop well-rounded talents, ready to tackle challenges of the 21st century workforce. Through STAR, SAP Indonesia hopes to improve not only interpersonal skills, but also digital literacy and general ICT skills that are needed for the future economy.  

Latrisya Yusmika, a second year Communications student at Monash University agrees stating that she is now more familiar with how technology is applied in business and industry. “SAP’s supportive work and learning environment also encouraged me to be more confident and proactive in order to be professional,” she continued. 

Southeast Asia STAR Program Manager, Hongwei Lu, said that several SAP Global executives were also born from this program. “SAP’s CEO Christian Klein and member of the SAP Executive Board, Thomas Saueressig, graduated from earlier STAR programs. That’s 2 out of 6 executive members and STAR students have had a great opportunity to become part of the top ranks of our company and other leading technology companies. This is our way of shaping future leaders even before the get-go of formal work – call it talent-hacking!” she said. 

Managing Director of SAP Indonesia, Andreas Diantoro, hopes that this program can aid in reducing the digital talent skills gap in Indonesia and producing young leaders and early movers in the field. “SAP’s STAR programme is targeted at equipping and maturing students to ensure they are workforce-ready,” said Andreas. 

For more information about SAP’s STAR programme, please contact refer to this link.