Upskilling is the process of teaching or training employees to enhance their existing skills. The goal is to ensure they’re kept up to date with the latest industry trends, technologies, and processes to ensure their productivity, efficiency, and overall performance.
Upskilling Matters for Organizations
For instance, in the HR profession, laws and regulations are continually changing, meaning employees need to be continually upskilled to ensure they understand the regulatory requirements and risks they need to be aware of to perform their jobs effectively—and protect company interests.
But upskilling isn’t important only in the HR realm. Employees across all departments, and all skill levels, need to be continually upskilled to ensure they’re optimally prepared to be efficient, productive, and effective.
Upskilling Matters for Employees, Too
Organizations obviously benefit from upskilling, but so do employees! Employees benefit from the ability to adapt to new technological advancements, new methods of doing their jobs, and new skills to ensure competencies to serve them today and into the future, making them employable—and promotable.
To ensure your upskilling efforts are effective and deliver the desired results, it’s important to:
- Align upskilling efforts with organizational goals and strategic objectives. Employees need to be prepared to meet organizational needs today and into the future.
- Continually assess individual employee needs through assessment or surveys to help identify skills gaps and areas of opportunity for upskilling. This ensures your training efforts will meet both employee and organizational needs.
- Provide diverse learning opportunities. Employees have different learning preferences, making it important to provide a variety of learning opportunities, methods, and channels to meet their diverse needs.
- Set clear goals. Upskilling without a desired endpoint may result in wasted resources—time and money. Start with a clear understanding of the objective and measurable goals you wish to achieve.
- Reward and recognize achievements. Take time to step back and celebrate individual and team accomplishments and milestones to reinforce the importance of continuous learning.
Regardless of the role they’re in, all employees need to be provided with upskilling to ensure they stay up to date with the knowledge, skills, and aptitudes to fulfill their job responsibilities. Upskilling is an important way to ensure this happens.
Lin Grensing-Pophal is a Contributing Editor at HR Daily Advisor.