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A Guide on How to Upskill Your Workforce

Upskilling entails acquiring new skills that will come in handy in the future. Some of these skills include analytical or digital skills.

Upskilling is currently relevant since companies are experiencing massive growth in the digital skills gap. The current skill gap results from:

  1. Digitization – we are currently in the fourth industrial revolution. There are also developments in different fields, including robotics and artificial intelligence, which means the nature of some jobs has changed significantly.
  2. An aging workforce – such a workforce is set to retire soon, which means there will be a considerable gap in terms of job positions that are hard to fill, and some important knowledge may be lost in the process.

Below are strategies that can help you upskill your workforce:

  1. Job Rotation

Job rotation is a technique applied in job redesign. It entails moving employees from one department to another. Through job rotation, the employees can gain specific skills, competencies, and knowledge. The rotations are usually lateral and take place as long as the jobs are on a similar level. Also, they’re temporary, and people move back to their initial position after some time.

For instance, managers need some experience in various departments before they can hold senior leadership positions. HR professionals also lack business skills, and they can gain significantly from job rotation.

  1. Learning and Development

Ensure there is a learning and development program so that you can manage to upskill your workforce. As you formulate a learning and development strategy, some of the phase you should include are:

• The learning objectives should be specified.
• Training needs should be analyzed.
• Training methods and content should be designed.
• Evaluation and monitoring.

The learning and development strategy will vary from one organization to another. It means the learning methods chosen by an organization to upskill the workforce will also vary. Some companies prefer utilizing online courses while incorporating real-life lectures in between. Other firms may prefer peer coaching. All things will ensure one learns one or the other skill. It helps in molding a person he or she can be able to perform in different platforms.

  1. Job Enrichment

Job enrichment entails incorporating extra dimensions to the current jobs. For instance, the skill variety may be increased while also issuing feedback.

The main aim of job enrichment is to ensure the jobs are more motivating while ensuring the workforce gains from upskilling. By increasing the skill variety, the employees will manage to expand their abilities.

  1. Job Enlargement

Job enlargement entails bringing forth additional activities to a role that already exists at a certain level. It means the workforce will have to engage in more activities in their current position.

Job enlargement ensures the staff can improve on their skills as they focus on career growth. Additional responsibilities need training, and they help to build additional experiences.

  1. Peer Mentoring

Peer coaching and peer mentoring are similar; however, they are different terms. Peer mentoring is whereby an experienced employee shares the knowledge and skills they possess with the less experienced individuals in the company. The mentor will also offer subtle guidance. On the other hand, peer coaching will expose the employee to different workplace skills. Such a form of upskilling s attractive since it is somewhat informal, and people can talk directly as they ask questions. They will also learn by watching how their mentors handle everything.

The best example is when you pair up a content creator and a marketer; these individuals will create a mutual friendship, and each one of them will learn new skills while adding to the basic knowledge they possess in their respective fields.

With peer coaching, people can also build on their leadership skills, including useful feedback, active listening, the ability to mentor and teach, and timely communication.

  1. Hire Specialists

There are instances whereby you may need to upskill your workforce, but your in-house capacity limits you. In such an instance, you should hire a specialist to train the employees and ensure they have honed the necessary skills. There are instances whereby the required skills are new, and you lack the experience and knowledge to upskill your staff. You can also hire an expert to assist.

By ensuring the outsourced experts have teamed up with the right individuals within the firm, you can ensure there is an upskilling opportunity. Also, by the time the project is complete, you will have the capabilities you lacked initially in the organization.

  1. Digital Upskilling

Digital upskilling will gain relevance with time such that the global workforce will have to expound on their current skill set. Some of the skills that employees need to hone include:

• Using software such as MS Office.
• Blind Typing.
• The ability to use social media.
• The ability to properly use a PC.
• Programming.

After looking into different upskilling strategies, you may ask yourself, how do I go about digital upskilling? You can choose one of the methods outlined above, or you can use all of them. There is a high probability that different techniques are suitable when upskilling, depending on the nature of digital skills. If the main focus is on a long-term training course, some of the techniques you can rely on include job rotation or peer mentoring & coaching. Being all rounded is important in your career. Ensure you are learning what is highly needed in your field. The world is changing to the digital side and everybody is striving to be on the most wanted by upgrading their skills especially in technologies.

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