Technology Talent: Fill the Gap

We speak about the Fourth Industrial Revolution through Cloud and Digital, software apps and data that are shaping everything around us and have become part of our daily lives.

During this period of extreme growth, technology companies have been ill-prepared to face the resulting demand for specialized talent. Jobs that existed 10 years ago no longer exist and we will see this same cycle repeat itself over the next five or 10 years. This is not a challenge isolated to just a few countries — all countries are affected; we can consider this a truly global problem.

To address this global and costly challenge business leaders have a few options to help them fill the talent gap and anticipate their future needs.

Upskilling for Future Skills

Upskilling is a tool used within workforce planning to prepare for skills that will be needed as jobs and roles evolve and is extremely beneficial for both employers and employees. By learning new skills, employees remain employable as new jobs are created and they are also able to build a better career path for themselves. Companies have a unique chance to consider their current employees for new skillsets by investing in training and development while also retaining their best associates and ultimately increasing their productivity.

Upskilling also presents a financial interest for companies as it produces saving on their global talent acquisition cost by training their existing workforce on new skills rather than going out to the market to hire for them. This proactive way of looking at talent also shortens the ramp up time of an employee who already understands the business and can apply new skills more quickly than an external resource. We know there is great value in reduced downtime for consulting, technology services and digital transformation companies so this is one option to cut that duration to a minimum. By already having the right talent at the right place and time companies will be in line to generate revenue at an impressive pace.

Upskilling is also a cultural change to the organization and can be a key differentiator in terms of attracting candidates. When employees are given the opportunity to develop their skills they will have a positive experience and in return encourage referrals of top talent in their networks to apply to their company.

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Reskilling the Existing Workforce

Many companies have a part of their current workforce that consists of the right people but misaligned skills for what is needed.

The perfect way to invest in valuable associates and high performers is to reskill these workers to better align to the jobs within the organization. In a survey by PwC, 42% of global CEOs are planning to implement continuous learning initiatives – this is a number we expect to increase significantly over the next few years as reskilling gains more traction.By reskilling the existing workforce, companies can grow their internal talent pipeline and reduce the need to go to market for new, often more expensive, talent.

Focusing on retaining and reskilling workers will reduce the risk of losing great employees, a costly issue that many companies want to avoid.In many instances, this is an excellent practice to reduce downsizing and avoid paying severance but at the same time find cost savings by eliminating the need for additional recruitment.

Again, this cultural change of reskilling has positive impact into the labor market, their current employees and the targeted candidate population.

Whether it’s upskilling or reskilling, companies within the technology sector have a real golden opportunity to capitalize on the current talent market and landscape by investing in their people which ultimately will increase their employer brand and help drive their transformation efforts into the future.

Yann Koch

Yann Koch
Yann Koch is global head of development, tech and telco, for Pontoon.

Yann Koch

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