A few weeks ago I wrote about The Future of Jobs Report 2020 and how it emphasised the need for retraining and up-skilling of employees. Now a report from Microsoft UK indicates that the skills gap (particularly the digital skills gap) in the UK is widening, partly due to the impact of COVID-19.

Two Key Findings:

  • A majority of c-level executives believe that addressing the digital skills gap is important, but they are concerned about both the cost of up-skilling and the lack of a skills strategy.
  • Employees feel that they aren’t receiving the skills training they need, both to fulfil their current job, and that poor digital skills could make them less attractive to future employers.

There is no doubt that the economy is struggling, and there are fears that a lack of essential skills in employees will hinder any recovery.

What Can Be Done? 

For employers it won't be enough to simply spend more on training – they need to identify the essential skills required and deliver engaging learning to their people. A 2020 survey by Yonder Consulting found that 46% of employees believe they aren’t receiving training for skills they need – this is not only a waste of time and money, it’s a lost opportunity to build loyalty and increase the motivation of a workforce.

Once employers have identified which employees need what training, the next step will be to find suitable training. That 46% mentioned above represents a significant number of people who don’t find value in the content offered by their employer’s LMS. Perhaps it time to look beyond the standard learning offered by the LMS provider.

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