A recent study carried out found that 62% of executives believe that they will either need to retrain or replace more than a quarter of their workforce between now and 2030 due to automation and digitization in the workplace. With this in mind more and more companies are beginning to see the advantages of upskilling their workforces and have even begun implementing strategies to do so.

Many other companies still have the attitude that by providing upskilling, they could lose employees as a resource if they leave.  Due to this companies will start hiring for new opportunities rather than giving the training to current employees who may have been there for years. It should be looked at as a positive and should be seen as a way of retaining. By doing so, you are offering them the chance to grow within the business, which can lead to long-term benefits and a strong succession plan.

Implementing upskilling practices isn’t as simple as putting your employees on a training course. Everybody has different levels of skills, learning styles and schedules so finding the right method and programmes are essential.

What are the best upskilling practices?

1. Personal development plans

Personalized learning gives each employee a tailored programme to suit their skill set. A thorough analysis will reveal the type of level of training each employee needs. As, not every employee will be outstanding in certain areas or fail in others.

The next step is to draw up a plan that suits their specific needs and goals. With input from an allocated programme manager employees can use these plans to help them progress, develop and grow.

2. Include hands-on learning

Give training a more hands-on edge by including case studies and practical learning. This will allow them to start applying their new skills as they learn them. Provide each employee with a mentor and also hold regular programme meetings so that each employee can discuss case studies and learn from each other.

3. E-learning

A lot of employees already have full schedules so by rolling out an e-learning programme it allows them to upskill at their own pace. Don’t just leave it at that it can be tedious if you are just left scrolling through pages of text or solely watching videos. Arrange a meeting for all employees that are part of the programme so they can each give feedback about their progress so far.

4. Lunch and Learns

If time away from production is problematic for your organization you should consider hosting “Lunch and Learns” as a method to reskill corporate learners. Schedule a lunchtime training session to cover a certain topic over a complimentary meal, in a convivial and more relaxed atmosphere. If the company budget is tight, you can make it a brown bag session. Lunch and Learns can even be done online via Skype. Facilitators can share an upskilling presentation with the attendees while they eat at their desk.