Reskilling: A crucial strategy for employee training


The workforce’s automation, the pandemic’s economic impact, and digitalization have created a new environment in which companies are at risk of facing a professional shortage to fill specific positions requiring new skills.

The digital revolution sometimes sets an excessively demanding rhythm for employees and companies. More than 80% of talent development professionals have reported a skills gap within their organization, and 78% expect to see such a gap in the future, according to the Association for Talent Development’s Bridging the Skills Gap study.

In other words, we are facing a digital revolution that will force businesses to update their workforces through training or risk becoming obsolete. That’s why the term reskilling takes on particular importance.

What is reskilling?

Imagine that companies had to hire qualified people to meet the demands of a constantly changing world. Sounds unsustainable, right? It would be easier for these companies to optimize their results, getting their workforce to learn new skills and abilities. Well, this is possible thanks to reskilling.

This technique consists of retraining employees or updating talent in skills that the company needs to fill gaps or are most necessary nowadays. The main objective of reskilling is to train employees in skills to broaden their expertise and adapt their profiles to new positions within the company.

This strategy improves the general competence of the employees, making them more adaptable. It also eases the company’s transition towards the current market in constant change and favors employee retention.

Reskilling & Upskilling

Although we usually find these terms together, upskilling and reskilling are different. What makes these strategies different is the training’s objective. While upskilling aims to teach employees skills to improve their performance, reskilling’s goal is to train them in new skills for a new role.

Why is reskilling essential for your workforce?

According to a McKinsey study, 14% of people will be forced to change jobs in the coming years, depending on the technological development of artificial intelligence and automation. That’s why while the responsibilities or tasks of the workers become increasingly irrelevant or obsolete, reskilling becomes essential.

And as jobs evolve in response to innovation, the skills required to perform them will too. The best for a company’s future is to update its workforce skills and retain employees who already know the market and fit perfectly into the company’s culture.

According to Gartner, 33% of the skills requested in a typical 2017 job offer by 2021 were no longer required. Companies today are looking for workers with a very different skill set than in previous years. And that’s where retraining is especially valuable for maintaining core competencies rather than looking for new employees to fill those gaps.

Reskilling is vital for companies because as technology and automation combine and evolve, these skills gaps will continue to increase.

What are the benefits of reskilling for a company?

Reskilling provides multiple benefits to both the employee and the company, some of which are:

  1. Employee motivation and talent retention

An employee working in a business who knows the internal structure and all the procedures requires less training time than a new employee.

Also, training him in new areas makes him more likely to stay motivated and show interest in developing his career within the company.

  1. Expenses reduction

While it’s true that any employee’s training requires an investment, a new hire would mean up to 20% more in the budget since hiring costs add to the time and resources of the recruitment phase, interviews, and selection processes.

But that’s not all; work’s evolution and its inevitable elimination of specific roles, in general, leads to firings that imply compensation costs and negatively impact employee morale.

  1. More adaptable and proactive employees

Employees who expand their knowledge and skills through reskilling become valuable and versatile resources within the company.

  1. Improve company culture

Logically, a worker wants to belong to an organization that is committed to him in the long term and encourages his learning. So when a company demonstrates this level of commitment to the growth of its employees, it automatically manages to create a culture of internal talent mobility, which gives it an advantage over other companies.

  1. Improve corporate reputation

Reskilling promotes an active company culture, which adapts to a constantly changing environment, consequently improving its reputation and achieving goals.

  1. Make the transition easy

Since a large part of current jobs will be affected by technological changes and automation, if not already being, reskilling can facilitate this transition, giving workers tools to reinvent themselves, consequently improving versatility and the ability to adapt to this change.

How to implement a reskilling plan in your company?

The disciplines are changing, and it is necessary to adapt. In the spirit of being able to fill the new job positions that have emerged and expand the skills of employees towards new roles, we will tell you how to apply reskilling to your workplace in 4 steps:

Assess the needs of the company

It’s necessary to assess and prioritize the most urgently needed skills among the organization’s employees to develop a successful relearning strategy.

There are many competencies or areas of training in valuable skills, but if you need help identifying which soft skills your team needs, you can review our catalog and get an idea of where to start.

These skills must adapt to the new work environment to achieve immediate objectives. But it’s necessary to think in advance, update the relearning process, and include other skills for long-term purposes while the company reaches short-term goals.

Study existing skills in employees

Just as it is necessary to map the gaps in existing skills within the company, it is also required to identify the skills or previous knowledge your team already has.

The organization’s skills must be compiled in a database, allowing you to distinguish employees who can more easily transition to other roles and have more control of their previous knowledge.

Design a training program

Creating a learning structure is required for the reskilling process to be successful. To do this, you can use an authoring tool to create attractive courses that include videos, games, tests, and various interactive resources capable of engaging your audience or rely on experts who will do it easily.

Integrating skills that help increase your team’s productivity is also necessary. But if you have trouble beginning, check this article on the seven fundamental power skills your team needs to guarantee the success of your organization.

Encourage reskilling

It’s important to remember that the prospect of having to train or learn a new skill set can be worrying or overwhelming for some people. For this, it’s constructive to maintain active communication so that employees understand how relearning is vital for the company’s survival and professional growth.

Finally, organizations must collect and analyze employee progress to stay on top of the program’s success or restructure it when is necessary.

What training methodologies to use for the reskilling of your workforce?

There is a wide variety of employee training methods, but the online format could be a good ally for your business since it gives freedom to learners and allows the use of new technologies.

Some models, such as e-learning training, coaching, micro-learning, blended learning, or online seminars, favor knowledge and are more affordable for businesses. If you want to delve a little deeper into it, our article on four online training models that are successful in companies will be very helpful.

Develop your reskilling strategy with the help of isEazy

Now that you know what reskilling is and why it is essential in your workplace, it is time for you to get to know IsEazy and its e-learning solutions for companies, which will allow you to create a reskilling strategy that suits your needs.

Cristina Sánchez


Cristina Sánchez

Digital PR Specialist at isEazy

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