Unleash the Potential of Your Workforce

There is a talent war in the United States, but it can be won from inside. While the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and The Great Resignation continue to pose challenges for employers, evidence suggests that these seismic disruptions only exacerbated existing trends that predicted widening skill gaps in the labour market.

Companies in a variety of industries are increasingly confronting personnel shortages and skill gaps, which are impeding their competitiveness. According to the Wiley book, Closing the Skills Gap 2023: Employer Perspectives on Educating the Post-pandemic Workplace, over 70% of organisations report having skills shortages, up from 55% in 2021. According to the Job Opening and Labour Turnover Survey (JOLTS).

Despite certain high-profile layoffs at major technology firms, many organisations are experiencing a severe lack of experienced technology employees. For example, there are now over 750,000 cybersecurity job opportunities in the United States, with 3.4 million cybersecurity employees required internationally. According to General Assembly’s The State of Tech Talent Acquisition 2023 study, the typical cost to fill a tech function is currently $30,000 per year.

Simply said, there aren’t enough specialists in the IT pipeline to cover the holes. These widespread market issues, along with economic instability and the quick speed of digital transformation, are actively working against employers’ labour objectives and necessitate a course correction.

This transformation begins with tackling the underlying causes of the talent war rather than just managing its symptoms. Companies may begin by recognising the potential in their workforces and proactively developing a talent pipeline of competent people.

Solutions for Sourcing and Skill Development

Hire, train, and deploy

First, companies must use the market’s existing strength by deploying innovative sourcing and recruitment strategies, such as hire-train-deploy (HTD). The HTD approach recruits and trains college graduates in high-demand technological skill sets before placing them in real-world job opportunities.

HTD is particularly useful now since it alleviates the stress of vying for talent while also providing a degree of control and predictability that traditional recruiting programmes cannot often deliver. It also diversifies tech teams by giving graduates from historically underrepresented groups, regardless of academic background, the same opportunity to thrive in high-paying tech jobs.

Corporations may supplement HTD by tapping the potential of their existing workforces through upskilling and reskilling programmes. These low-cost techniques address a company’s unique talent and skill shortages while increasing retention rates since employees now have access to new internal mobility channels.

Expanding these paths is especially crucial for the IT industry, which has been working for years (although in a piecemeal manner) to boost diversity among its ranks. In actuality, white workers account for 62% of the high-tech workforce, with Hispanic and Latinx workers accounting for 8% and Black employees accounting for 7%. The gender gap in technology is also a present concern, with just 28% of women working in computing and mathematics.

Role formation and transition

Upskilling and reskilling employees to fill IT roles may help your company not only fulfil talent demands, but also encourage a sustainable workforce. These learning interventions may be divided into two categories: role development and role transition. Role development, as the name indicates, upskills and equips current tech teams with the specific skills and competencies they lack, such as in Java, Python, AWS, and Linux.

Role transfer can reskill people who are currently in non-technical roles in order to shift them into technological roles. Reskilling is the process of developing and training people to take on jobs that are outside of their existing position and skill set. A customer service agent, for example, may be trained to work on the information technology (IT) helpdesk.

Upskilling and reskilling initiatives not only allow individuals to develop in their careers, but they also help organisations save money on onboarding while meeting short- and long-term business objectives.

The Next Steps

Connecting learning content to workers’ professions is another road to success. Unfortunately, what workers learn in higher education and on the job, particularly in technology, is frequently one step behind what they require in the real world. We must create and offer training that matches the changing commercial demands of a global economy.

While there are many self-paced learning platforms with large content libraries that can help learners upskill and reskill, employers can also collaborate with universities and higher education institutions to offer reskilling and upskilling opportunities, such as employer-sponsored continuing education courses and apprenticeships.

Aligning skill development and company need can help to futureproof workforces during times of turbulence, allowing for long-term success.

There are numerous fronts in the battle for talent, but the most successful approach may be for businesses to make better use of the resources they already have until the supply lines reopen.


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