There’s no denying that times are changing – fast. With that, technological advancements and globalization continue to increase the demand for better-skilled workers. Furthermore, companies, together with their employees, need to evolve to survive and thrive in the ever-changing marketplace. According to research by Gartner, about 58% of the workforce will need new skills to complete their jobs successfully. So how do companies face this challenge and keep up with the market’s current demands? The simple solution is Employee Upskilling.
Employee Upskilling has proven to be a very effective talent improvement strategy for companies looking to scale and empower their workforce and bridge the skill gap. Any company interested in staying ahead of its competition must start by making its organization future-proof by investing in its people today through Upskilling.
In general, many employers are already taking advantage of Upskilling programs to boost productivity at their organizations. A study showed that nearly 70% of companies invest in Upskilling to handle changes within their organization and increase the efficiency of their workforce.
In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about Upskilling Employees – what it is, its importance, and steps that companies can take to upskill their employees.
What is Upskilling of Employees?
Employee Upskilling is a process by which companies invest in their workforce by providing them with knowledge and skills that can help them advance their careers. Upskilling ensures that companies and their employees stay in tune with in-demand skills and improve their processes in line with current trends.
As a company, Upskilling your employees is vital if you want to achieve your goals and stand out in the industry. Upskilling allows employees to enhance their capabilities, increase their efficiency, expand their skill set and provide better quality work to your company. It is a win-win for everyone!
According to a survey, 80% of employees say Upskilling training has boosted their confidence. Better employee morale will ultimately translate into a better working environment and organizational success. Want to put your company on the desired path to greatness? Upskilling is the way to go!
Difference Between Employee Upskilling and Reskilling
Upskilling and Reskilling are essential concepts in enabling a company to stay competitive. Even though these terms have some similarities, they are fundamentally different.
While Upskilling focuses on increasing an employee’s performance and knowledge in a current profession or field, reskilling aims to teach an employee new skills to perform a different job.
Upskilling helps employees adapt to changing market conditions, enhances their value, and positions them for the future. When a company takes time to Upskill its employees, it makes them feel appreciated and valued. And this may be what is needed to get the best performance out of them.
Reskilling allows employees to test new waters and try a different role in another department or company. Companies may employ reskilling when an employee’s specific skill set is not needed anymore. The employees are then taught the skills necessary to be relevant in a new role.
By leveraging upskilling or reskilling, companies can focus on developing and retaining existing talent within and avoid the cost and stress of hiring someone from outside the company.
The Importance of Upskilling Employees
Upskilling has become increasingly relevant in recent years, and the reason isn’t far-fetched. Many companies are experiencing a digital skill gap. To solve this problem and prepare for the future, companies must embrace innovative strategies such as Upskilling.
Here are a few reasons why companies should invest in upskilling:
It Boosts the Performance of Employees
Want to get more out of your employees? Try Upskilling. Not only does upskilling upgrade employees according to the latest trends and developments in the markets, but it also enables them to perform their tasks easier, faster, and more efficiently. Better employee performance will ultimately translate into more success for your business.
It Saves Time and Money
Hiring new and qualified candidates in a company is a challenging process, especially while working remotely. Companies have to invest a lot of time, money, and effort into searching for candidates who have the required skills and share the same values with the company.
According to a study, the average cost of a company trying to fill a vacancy is about $4000. That’s a whole lot of money! Upskilling gives companies a cost-effective alternative by allowing existing employees to learn skills that make them perform better in their current roles without needing a new hire.
Bridging the Skill Gap
Undeniably, there is a growing digital skills gap today. Companies now demand more from their employees to stay competitive and keep up with current innovations such as robotic process automation solutions, artificial intelligence, and other technologies.
According to Catherine Schwartz, Finance Editor at Crediful, “Digitalization has created a skill gap that will only continue to get wider with time. Companies now have the responsibility of identifying and narrowing this skill gap through the use of proven strategies such as upskilling.“
It is essential that employers first conduct a detailed analysis to understand where the skill gaps exist within the organization. After identifying the priority areas where development is needed, the company should focus on upskilling employees appropriately. Employee Upskilling is arguably the most effective method of bridging this skill gap.
Greater Employee Retention
The majority of employees will only enjoy working in an organization that shows genuine concern about investing in their upskilling. A report showed that about 94% of employees would stay longer at a company that invests in training them.
There is enough evidence to prove that upskilling can make employees more motivated, focused, dedicated, and loyal to a company that values them enough to invest in them, thereby boosting employee retention.
Steps Involved in Upskilling Employees
Now that we’ve seen how important upskilling can be in the success of a modern-day business, the next step is to look at the steps companies should take to upskill their employees.
1. Evaluating the Workforce
The first step in upskilling is a detailed study of your workforce. You need to assess your team to find out where the gaps are. It is also good practice to survey your employees to find out specific aspects they feel they lack and would like to improve.
It’s also possible for employees to desire to learn without knowing the areas that need to be worked on. So, you’ll be charged with helping them clarify their need for upskilling.
2. Research the Latest Trends and Developments
The next step is to do your research and deep digging. What skills are needed to stay ahead of the curve and relevant in the industry? Find out if your team is currently equipped for the present and the future. If not, how can you begin that journey that will always keep you a step ahead of your competition?
3. Implement the Plan
Now for the most exciting part. How do you go about putting all your research into action? Is learning and development all that is needed? Do you take charge of the process? Or do you bring in experts? The answer to all the questions? Listen to your employees.
Communicating and collaborating with your employees helps you know the best strategies for executing your plans and achieving the desired results. Even though you can implement some developments generally across the board, there are chances that different employees and departments will need unique training to develop improved skills.
Remember to be flexible during this stage and customize your upskilling to the specific needs of every employee. Above all, avoid employing a one-size-fits-all approach.
Without a doubt, Employee Upskilling is the future of work! As digital technologies and innovation continue to grow, companies and their employees will need to embrace upskilling to stay relevant in today’s market and prepare for the future of work.