Keeping up with the rate of technological development is difficult for all sizes and types of organizations. The demand for skilled workers is especially high in the healthcare, manufacturing and construction industries, where technology provides powerful business opportunities.
How can businesses effectively fill the skills gap while keeping their existing employees? In our increasingly technology-driven world, a company’s capacity to upskill, or its ability to train and develop its staff in order to acquire new skills, gives it a significant competitive edge. As per McKinsey, “To rebound from the COVID-19 crisis, businesses should consider reskilling their employees now.”
Why Should You Upskill and Reskill Your Workforce?
Employee turnover is both costly and common. The cost of replacing an existing employee, according to Gallup, can range from one-half to two times the employee’s yearly pay. Investing in reskilling, or upskilling, is a more cost-effective approach than employing and training a new employee. As you retrain your staff, you build a more well-rounded and cross-trained staff that is more productive.
It doesn’t just increase your profits. It also offers some additional benefits:
Better Employee Retention Rate
Upskilling and reskilling employees can help keep them at your company and is an especially great option for those looking to keep their best workers. According to a recent study, people perform better when they are working in their areas of interest, so giving them opportunities for cross-training and experiential learning can be a huge plus.
Not only will you have happier employees who enjoy coming to work every day—but it’s also likely that they won’t look elsewhere for jobs because they already feel invested in your company. People who leave their jobs don’t necessarily want higher pay; more often than not, it’s because they’re unhappy with where they are.
Every employee wants to feel as though they are growing and improving their skills. Helping your employees obtain the training they need is a sure way to boost morale in your organization. It will also motivate them to do more and better work, which can help boost profits.
By investing in your team, you’re essentially helping them grow with your company, so it stays strong for years to come. When employees are happy and dedicated to their work, everyone wins!
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Improves Customer Satisfaction
Having employees that are knowledgeable and enjoy their jobs will increase your customers’ satisfaction with your service. Not only do customers want to be served quickly, but they also want their questions answered confidently and correctly.
If you have well-trained employees, you can put them in a position where they can go above and beyond for customers by answering more detailed questions about your product or service. Investing in employee training shows that you value your workers, which is essential for any business because happy employees create satisfied customers.
Attracts More Talented Employees
Talented workers are in high demand and scarce supply. In a competitive job market, it’s essential to attract top talent by offering training to boost employees’ skill sets. When you invest in employee education and skill development, you can attract more talented applicants to your company—and retain your most skilled employees for longer.
For many business owners, upskilling their workforce is one of their top HR priorities. In fact, according to recent research, 43% of executives around the world say developing employee skills is extremely important for business success.
Top Ways to Upskill Your Workforce
With the continued evolution of technology and ever-changing business demands, companies are finding it more challenging to keep their employees up to date on the skills and knowledge they need to succeed on the job. In fact, according to a study, only 16% of companies believe that their workforce has the skills required for their business today.
The good news? According to a recent report, 84% of CEOs are planning to invest in training over the next five years to keep up with the growing demand for more skilled workers.
Here are the top ways to upskill your workforce-
Give Employees Opportunities for Growth
Companies can support their employees’ skill-building by providing them with opportunities for growth and advancement. By encouraging your employees to look at career-building as a team sport, you’ll create a work environment that promotes professional development, fosters an innovative culture, and makes everyone more likely to strive for tremendous success together.
Everyone wins when there are opportunities for advancement—and not just financial ones: An individual’s ability to learn new skills is directly related to his or her level of engagement in an organization. In fact, having growth opportunities has been found to increase job satisfaction by up to 15 percent!
It also makes employees feel more integrated into a company’s culture and allows them to learn from their peers, as well as give them hands-on experience in real situations. If your business works with customers face-to-face, it’s essential that everyone on staff knows how to talk about your product, what questions they can answer, and how to handle objections.
Offer Training Programs
Organizing on-the-job training programs for skills in great demand can be a wonderful method to keep your personnel up to date, especially as technology advances and evolves. Things like coding boot camps or machine learning training programs are valuable for workers at all experience levels, whether they’re entry-level or managers.
Explore what skills are in demand by your industry and make training available. On-the-job training programs can help provide a boost for employees who need additional expertise or are interested in furthering their career path. It can also be a valuable way to maintain workforce loyalty, ensuring that your employees see that you have their best interests at heart.
Even if your business doesn’t offer formal training, you can still do things on a smaller scale to give new hires enough knowledge of systems and processes so they can get started working quickly. You can also consider introducing short courses on key topics for new workers, such as providing them with online modules about emerging trends and technologies.
Provide Soft Skill Training Opportunities
The soft skills gap is one of today’s most pressing issues. Businesses need people who can work well in teams, think on their feet, and are passionate about making a difference. They want employees with character, humility, and leadership potential. It’s why so many companies invest in training their workforce, but not every strategy works for every business. The trick is to consider what will be helpful and applicable to your current and future workforce – it doesn’t make sense to hire a full-time trainer if you don’t have any full-time staff.
But there are several low-cost, high-value strategies available to everyone. By offering in-house training or remote workshops, you can develop and upskill your workforce so that they’re always learning and growing.
Use Technology to Make Training Easier
No matter how well you train your employees, it’s inevitable that there will be situations when they’ll need extra guidance or refreshers. Technology can bridge gaps in training. For example, many companies are now using video conferencing so they can train their teams even when they’re not in the same location at once. Videoconferencing makes it easy for remote teams to get on-the-job training without having them all in one place.
Video chat software like Skype and Google Hangouts make it possible for team members in different parts of the world to collaborate and learn from each other virtually through screens. When used effectively, these tools can help equip your employees with all sorts of industry knowledge, saving time and money by shortening development cycles and keeping information accurate and consistent across locations.
In addition, there are numerous tools that let you assess workers’ current skill levels and see if they’re ready for a promotion. For example, SkillSurvey is an AI-based assessment platform that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithms to process hundreds of variables in just a few minutes. SkillSurvey predicts which skills will be most valuable to an organization based on changes in roles within that organization.
Host Lectures From Industry Leaders
Another way of upskilling your workforce is by giving them access to guest lecturers who are experts in their fields. By bringing in professionals from different industries and sharing insights with your employees, you help boost their professional development. Another benefit of doing so is that you can help forge important relationships for your company with these industry leaders if you do it right.
For example, hosting a lecture on blockchain technology by someone like Adam Draper will give you access to an influential leader in one of today’s hottest tech trends, help increase morale at work and raise interest in what your business does—all while helping forge connections that can be beneficial down the road.
Allow Every Employee To Give Feedback
For your workforce to grow, you need employees who are open and willing to be coached and given feedback. For many employees, giving (and receiving) feedback can be uncomfortable. However, when done right, it is an opportunity for growth. That’s why we recommend that all leaders set aside time each quarter (or another period of time) to meet with their team and go over goals from the previous period, as well as discuss possible growth opportunities. This is also an excellent way for leaders to acknowledge outstanding work from individuals on their teams and how they helped contribute towards overall team goals.
During these reviews, be sure to ask your employees what they feel they need to grow. It’s up to leaders and managers at every level to foster a culture of continuous improvement in their teams. Asking each employee what he or she feels would help them best grow in their roles is an excellent way for leaders and managers alike to cultivate growth opportunities.
It is evident that upskilling and reskilling the workforce can benefit organizations and employees alike. However, it is important to note that this process is not always easy, nor does it happen overnight. There are various ways a business can go about upskilling and reskilling its workforce, but the most important thing is that both the organization and the employees are on board with the plan. To reap the benefits of a skilled and knowledgeable workforce, an organization must invest time, effort, and resources into upskilling and reskilling its employees.
The days of employees working at a job for their entire career and retiring with a pension are long gone. In order to stay competitive in today’s economy, businesses need to be willing to invest in upskilling and reskilling their workforce. This can be done through employee monitoring software that makes it easy to track employee development and identify training needs.
By taking this proactive approach to managing workforce analytics, your business can ensure that its employees have the skills necessary to meet future challenges.
Try the best workforce analytics software and get the in-depth analysis required to manage your workforce effectively and efficiently-
What strategies is your business using to keep its workforce up-to-date? Tell us in the comment section below.
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