Upskilling refers to the process of teaching current employees new skills. As technology creates opportunities, employers seek to fill new jobs with candidates who possess specialized skill sets. By upskilling current employees, companies can fill open positions while retaining their current workforce by creating learning opportunities. Employees have never had more career options. Investing in upskilling helps you attract and keep your talent in house.
Training and on boarding costs are expensive. It costs more money to hire and train a new employee than it does to offer training and upskill current staff. Upskilling takes less time and reduces other costs associated with hiring from outside the organization to fill a skill gap.
As most industry leaders in executive recruitment will tell you, upskilling allows your employees to more easily stay on top of new trends, industry developments, and new business practices. This helps your company become more adaptive and agile.
Your employees want professional development and training. Providing it to them will keep them more engaged, help them do their job better and help them improve performance. Because learning from another employee not only makes use of the desire for social learning but also helps learners to keep developing their skills long after the initial training.
A thorough needs analysis will reveal the type and level of training that each employee needs most. The next step is to draw up a personal development plan with clear training goals for employees to achieve. With input from their managers, employees can use these plans to guide their improvement and track their progress.
Give your training a practical edge by making good use of relatable case studies and realistic simulations. For example, if the training focuses on upskilling sales employees so that they start using more advanced negotiation techniques, give them plenty of opportunities to practice calls and experience them from the customers’ perspective.
To make the most of your efforts in upskilling employees, establish a mentoring program to help each employee in their future tasks. Mentors are also effective in keeping mentees up to date with coming changes in technology that might affect their jobs. And, you can even strengthen your mentoring program by offering specific mentoring training to mentors.
Upskilling helps your employees not only develop skills they need for their current role, but also develop additional skills that can be used if they are promoted. It helps ease the transition to new roles internally.
When you invest in your employees, they are more likely to remain loyal and stay long term. This will help reduce employee turnover, reduce recruiting costs, improve engagement and provide a greater return on your investment in your team.