Feb. 25, 2021 - Advancements in technology, big data and AI are changing the landscape of work, automating jobs and creating skill gaps in the market. In today´s soon-to-be post-pandemic world, it is happening at a faster pace than ever before.
It was predicted by McKinsey, that by 2055 more than half of the job activities that exist today will become obsolete and that depending on various circumstances, it could happen even up to 20 years earlier. Considering last year's lightspeed technological progress, companies, top management and L&D professionals have to start working on equipping their talent with future-proof skills, upskilling and reskilling them to ensure the thriving of their company.
Upskilling is the process of improving a current skill set. It's a vertical growth path towards optimized abilities and potential leadership in a specific field of expertise. On the other hand, reskilling focuses on entirely new abilities, preparing an employee for steering his or her career in a different direction.
Upskilling and reskilling employees will bring multiple benefits such as improving the company´s long-term perspectives, increasing productivity, ensuring talent retention, and attracting bright, new talent. Additionally, it will make constant changes easier to adapt to and instill a culture of learning essential in the years to come, for succeeding both at an individual and organizational level.
However, both pursuits can prove daunting at times, and to shed light on this topic, we have listed the 4 key things to consider when upskilling or reskilling your workforce.
1. COMPANY STRATEGY
The upskilling and reskilling of the talent in your company must be a top-down driven effort. Employee growth must become an integral part of the company strategy and L&D must think together with top management. Both parties should align the vision for the future of the company, its strategic plans, priorities and objectives for the following years, with how talent will be supported to complete these.
Afterwards, you can start defining the skills that the company requires to fulfill these objectives and vision. Apart from the sought-after technical and digital skills, and any others required specifically in your company depending on industry, size and focus, also consider the increasing importance of soft skills.
McKinsey asserts that soft skills will be part of the key skill set for thriving amid uncertainty and navigating continuous change. High-cognitive skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking, creativity, innovation or leadership, will become increasingly important as they are otherwise still difficult to replicate and automate with the help of technology.
2.THE HYBRID WORKPLACE
In a previous article, we have predicted that the future of work is hybrid, with new research among both employees and employers supporting flexible work, both from home and in-office, at an individual´s convenience in the post-pandemic world. As the workplace becomes hybrid, there are numerous implications for training the talent in your company. New ways of upskilling and reskilling will have to be devised to make training effective and suitable for hybrid working environments.
Preferences regarding the working environment will of course depend on your company, so it is best to consult both the employees and the management, establish preferences and find a solution that suits the majority.
Bear in mind that training flexibility will be relevant not only for current employees, but also for attracting new talent with the right mindset: one that is adaptable to changes, has a growth mindset and is eager to upskill or reskill from a certain moment on during their time in a company.
To train the workforce in your company effectively, whether it is reskilling or upskilling, your strategy should be based on strong educational fundamentals. Hence, designing a training strategy must also take place with pedagogy in mind.
As mentioned previously, reflecting upon the desired future of the company, the strategy devised to attain it and the skills required for achieving it are essential. Paired with the demands for flexibility in terms of format and delivery of the training experience, a reflection on how to achieve these via pedagogical methods must follow.
There are numerous pedagogical methods for effective training, but one of our favorite ones at Barco is the AGES model, consisting of four major factors required to retain new information successfully. Participants need to be supported to pay Attention. Upon learning a new concept, the own Generation of knowledge through reflecting upon it or applying it in realistic circumstances is necessary. Lastly, stimulating positive Emotion and Spacing training in shorter sessions across a longer period of time is preferable, supporting long-term memory and learning continuity.
Ensure you have the right solution for upskilling and reskilling your workforce both remotely and on-site. A solution with strong and varied capabilities will encourage and inspire the talent in your company to learn, and enable them to acquire abilities faster and better.
Provide varied content to train your talent and make learning interactive with live lectures, polls and quizzes, breakout rooms for teamwork but also pre-recorded videos, presentation slides, eBooks, case studies, or white papers. Make training material available on-demand and mobile-accessible, ensuring employees can learn at their convenience.
Further on, education technology will not only enhance training experiences for your workforce but will also enable useful insights impossible to obtain during face-to-face only training. Providing valuable analytics and data on attention, engagement and interaction with the training material and other participants, pedagogical methods can be assessed and optimized for improved training efforts and results.
BARCO WECONNECT SUPPORTS REMOTE AND HYBRID TRAINING IN L&D
Barco weConnect supports the upskilling and reskilling efforts in your company. Our software solution is suitable for both remote and onsite training, hence perfect for the hybrid working place of the future. It offers a front row experience for all participants, enabling fast and effective information acquirement. Participants can share content, break out in working groups, vote in polls and respond in quizzes, enjoying an engaging, interactive experience, across any devices.
Additionally, user analytics help adjust your pedagogical methods and optimize future classes and consequently, enhance the upskilling and reskilling outcomes needed for securing a bright future for your company.