When the world came to a pause, and teams were sent to work from home, everybody had to readjust, and some had to take a crash course on how to work remotely. Businesses had to digitize its processes and services not only to work, but also to survive and avoid closing, which meant that workers had to upskill, or even reskill, in order to respond to the unprecedented times.
“The ability to adapt, pivot and work differently was essential for sustaining productivity and service levels — even as head counts were frozen or reduced. While many employees easily acclimated to remote work, others had difficulty adjusting. Those who struggled needed digital skills training and coursework that encouraged innovation and creativity in decision-making and problem-solving”, stated Suneet Dua, a PwC executive.
At the same time, companies that had delayed their automation before the pandemic hit, realized that upskilling their employees and improving their internal processes would make the company more resilient, ready for any change, and more efficient in the long term. The same realization came to those who lost their jobs, and decided to enroll in a course that would give them the skills that were missing. According to an article from Human Resources Director, “Canadians are making the most out of their time at work by learning new skills even amid disruptions from COVID-19. More than two in five (44%) developed at least one new competency since the pandemic began, a new study showed. This trend of upskilling marks a new era in talent development: a quarter of workers are purportedly investing in their capabilities to stay job-ready and to advance in their career after the turmoil of 2020.”
In spite of the numbers, there’s still people who wonder if they should invest in learning a new skill, or expanding their careers to apply for a new position, especially as the lockdown extended in some areas and the financial difficulties started to be a challenge. Here we present to you the benefits of learning a new skill and complementing your career profile.
Staying up to date
As technologies advance, so do companies that need to update their software and processes to keep operating in an efficient way, and to respond to clients who demand the best customer service and up to date technologies. Dua’s article also states that when businesses decide not to advance in improving their systems, disruptive events could hit them harder: “The pandemic brought a new sense of urgency to the case for upskilling by exposing weaknesses that could present a systemic risk to growth, competitiveness and an ability to adapt when the next disruption occurs. Companies that don’t act swiftly and with conviction risk falling behind. More digital literacy and mental flexibility across the workforce can help transform the organization at scale, create a culture of continuous learning and put the company in a stronger competitive position when the next disruption occurs”.
Likewise, the article on Human Resources Director states that the upskilling trend marks a new era in career development, since a quarter of workers are investing in their capabilities to stay job-ready and to advance in their career. “Many employees have consequently had to acquire new skills to work from home to enable COVID-safe working practices, to account for new economic realities, or because their previous job has changed so much,” said Capterra, which released the study.
Fill the Skills Gap
Since most workers had a steady job, or were used to perform the classic job roles, not everybody has the profile companies are looking for; especially as businesses prepare to fully reopen, the expectation from that pre-pandemic position has evolved to require digital skills, and soft skills that were gained while working through the global emergency, like customer service skills, listening skills, initiative to work at their own path and time management skills.
By investing in a course or program that could enhance your work profile, not only you are expanding your career, but you are also opening doors to possibly another role, another company or even a new profession, which is why, at ERP College, we offer nine programs that range from health care, to business analysis for business intelligence. Contact our admissions counsellor for more details, and register today.
Skills shortages as a major competitive challenge
Another trend that has been increasing as more businesses and facilities open, is work positions that remain vacant for longer periods, due to the lack of candidates with the skills required for the position. Under these circumstances, having more skills in the tool belt is always beneficial to increase the chances of getting hired, and offer an improved work profile
“Research from the World Economic Forum (WEF) finds that half of all employees around the world need to upskill or reskill by 2025 to embrace new responsibilities driven by automation and new technologies. Their findings also suggest that if the current pace of workforce upskilling doesn’t pick up, it could take decades for today’s employees to be ready for the future of work”, added Dua.
Digital upskilling is important to canadians. Digital upskilling is important to Canadians | Randstad Canada. (n.d.). https://www.randstad.ca/employers/workplace-insights/workplace-innovation/digital-upskilling-is-important-to-canadians/.
Dua, S. (2021, June 22). How upskilling prepares your workforce for future disruption. HR Dive. https://www.hrdive.com/news/how-upskilling-prepares-your-workforce-for-future-disruption/602176/.
Express Employment Professionals. (2020, October 28). Upskilling Is Key to Career Advancement Poll Shows. GlobeNewswire News Room. https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/10/28/2116058/0/en/Upskilling-Is-Key-to-Career-Advancement-Poll-Shows.html.
Hardy, E. (2021, June 30). Investing in mentorship and upskilling employees is the key to building a high-performing team. Business Insider. https://www.businessinsider.com/why-companies-invest-mentorship-upskilling-employees-high-performing-team-2021-6.
McDonald, P. (2021, June 9). As Businesses Prepare For The Future Of Work, The Need To Upskill And Reskill Workers Becomes More Essential. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/sites/paulmcdonald/2021/06/09/as-businesses-prepare-for-the-future-of-work-the-need-to-upskill-and-reskill-workers-becomes-more-essential/?sh=66375f3b7a78.
Ranosa, R. (2021, April 14). Top skills among Canadian workers. HRD Canada. https://www.hcamag.com/ca/specialization/learning-development/top-skills-among-canadian-workers/252207.
Riley, J. (2021, June 30). Council Post: Preparing The Workforce Of The Future. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2021/06/30/preparing-the-workforce-of-the-future/?sh=2d5848c84cb7.