Workforce need to enter digital age: Experts

Amrita Nair-Ghaswalla | | Updated on: Apr 16, 2019

‘Reskilling/upskilling is the need of the hour’

The rapid adoption of technology and artificial intelligence across corporates has highlighted the need for reskilling the workforce.

Ravi Kaklasaria, CEO, SpringPeople, an enterprise IT raining provider, said: “There is an urgent need to reskill employees from all sectors. Although in theory we have entered the digital era, technically, our workforce has not. This is also an era where hybrid skillsets are the need of the hour.”

Highlighting the problem most corporates face today, Kaklasaria told BusinessLine : “There are not enough employees with the right skillset. As the average half-life of a learnt skill is five years, there is a dire need for employees to periodically assess their skillset and make sure it is not obsolete.”

He insisted that organisations can identify employees who need to reskill through manager feedback and performance appraisals, and also proactively look for skill gaps before it becomes a problem.

Corporates also need to look to the industry and the latest research to assess where they are lagging behind, he added.

To meet the promise of the digital age, mid-career upskilling and transition are turning out to be a focus area for both companies and individuals.

Ellappan Venkatesan, CEO, EMURGO Academy, said transformational or incremental changes are happening across all industries, domains and verticals. “It can either be a simplification of existing processes or changing the entire process with the help of the latest development or update in the respective industries,” he said.

“For large organisations, it is difficult to go for fresh hires with change in processes. It also raises a big question mark over what needs to be done with the existing workforce, for the core knowledge of the existing workforce is also required. Hence, the urgent need to up-skill or re-skill,” he added.

EMUGO is the commercial and venture arm of the Cardano Project, a third-generation blockchain initiative.

Given the ever-changing scenario, experts say corporates can no longer roll out one-size-fits-all training programmes.

Re-imagining work

Before business leaders embark on a training revolution, they need to re-imagine the very nature of work.

Kaklasaria maintains one of the main challenges his company faced while reskilling employees pertained to the diverse age group. “This posed many problems relating to the type of content, the delivery mode of training, etc. As seasoned employees preferred the traditional mode of classroom delivery, and the new-age employees were more inclined towards online learning, we struck a balance and went for a mix of online and offline methods,” he said. Content was also customised to ensure its relevance, he added.

Published on April 16, 2019
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