Technology has the power to advance businesses to new heights. That is if companies maximize the use of the available tools. As discussed in our article on ‘Top 10 Disruptive Technologies That You Should Know’, disruptive technologies can displace existing market players, create new markets, and even change the way things are getting done. If organizations shift their focus and strategies to adapt to these changes, they can stay ahead of the competition and even gain a competitive advantage.
One of the ways business leaders can achieve this is by investing in upskilling their employees. A Forbes article on upskilling workers revealed that 50% of employees will need upskilling and reskilling by 2025. Upskilling employees cannot be achieved overnight. It takes time and deliberate implementation to ensure that individuals can understand how to use new technologies. If you’re thinking about upskilling your employees to secure your business in the future, now is the time to start developing your strategy.
What is Employee Upskilling?
Employee upskilling is the process of expanding your employee’s skill set to ensure they have the necessary skills and knowledge to address new challenges. Doing so will allow your employees to adapt rapidly to the changing economy and minimize the possibilities of any skill gaps. You can do this by providing continuous learning opportunities such as training and development programs.
However, employee upskilling is not merely asking individuals to attend classes and seminars. An LHH post on upskilling your employees explained that a successful program should be personalized and highly strategic. This is because employees have different skill sets, and a one-size-fits-all exercise may not benefit everyone equally. A more effective way to upskill employees is to create training programs focusing on individual interests and skills gaps.
To do this, combine data from employee reviews with the survey results asking employees what they want to learn. Using this information, you can tailor your training programs to address these needs and wants. For instance, some employees may prefer training opportunities to develop their leadership skills. This is especially important for new managers who might still be navigating their way through their roles. By providing leadership training for these individuals, you’re helping them elevate their skills to become astute leaders from technically adept managers.
Benefits of Employee Upskilling
Here are some benefits of employee upskilling:
1. Increased Employee Retention
According to a recent workforce survey analysis, 63% of employees in the US quit their jobs because there were no opportunities for advancement in their current companies. This indicates the shifting priorities of individuals from simply having a high-paying job to a career that allows them to learn and grow.
If you’re offering upskilling programs in your company, you can guarantee that highly qualified employees will keep their jobs because they see a future for growth with your organization. It also shows that you care about your employees’ careers and recognize their growth potential.
2. Reduced Recruitment Costs and Time
Remember that it’s always better to keep your existing employees than hire a new one. Recruiting new employees can take up time and accrue expenses during the interviewing and onboarding process.
With upskilling programs, you already have qualified individuals and will only need to expand their skills to make them better-equipped employees. And because of the highly competitive job market today, looking for the best-fit candidate may take a while, reducing your company’s productivity.
3. Increased Employee Morale
Another benefit of upskilling is that it increases employee morale and job satisfaction. A study found that the majority of American workers are happier at work when there are available opportunities to advance in their careers.
It is because upskilling your workforce helps employees to visualize their path to success, which can get them excited about the next steps in their careers. This will also allow them to develop a deeper sense of purpose and motivate them to work harder for the company and themselves.