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Reskilling
How can you eliminate skill gaps and bolster your team’s productivity? Reskilling! Here are some simple steps to get your reskilling program off the ground and making an impact.

What Is Reskilling?

Reskilling is the process of developing new skills or enhancing existing skills to enable an individual to perform new or different roles within an organization or industry. It involves providing employees with the training and resources needed to learn the new skills that are required to adapt to changing business needs, technologies or job roles. Reskilling can help individuals remain competitive in the job market, and can help organizations remain agile and adaptable in a rapidly changing business environment.

Upskilling vs. Reskilling

Upskilling and reskilling are two terms that are often used interchangeably, but they have different meanings. Reskilling refers to the process of teaching employees new skills that are different from their current job or role, whereas upskilling refers to the process of teaching employees new skills or improving existing skills to help them perform better in their current role. Both upskilling and reskilling may involve training programs, workshops or other forms of education that focus on enhancing the employee's capabilities. In summary, upskilling focuses on enhancing an employee's current skills to improve their performance in their current role, and reskilling focuses on teaching an employee new skills to prepare them for a different role or job.

What are the Benefits of Reskilling?

Reskilling offers benefits for both organizations and employees. Here are some potential benefits:

Benefits of Reskilling for Organizations

  • Greater flexibility. Since reskilled employees have been trained to fill additional responsibilities, they can work across different departments. This increases the flexibility and agility of the business to fill gaps when needed and disperse duties more efficiently.
  • Better talent retention. Employees are more likely to stay with an organization that invests in their skills and provides opportunities for growth and development.
  • Improved productivity and efficiency. Reskilled employees can bring new ideas and approaches to their work, leading to greater efficiency and productivity.
  • Reduced recruitment. By reskilling current employees, organizations may be able to fill skill gaps without needing to hire new staff, saving on recruitment costs.

Benefits of Reskilling for Employees

  • Increased job security. Employees who are reskilled may be more adaptable and better equipped to handle changing job requirements, making them less vulnerable to layoffs or job losses.
  • Improved career prospects. Reskilling can help employees develop new skills and expertise that can open up new career opportunities within the organization or in other industries.
  • Greater job satisfaction. By providing opportunities for growth and development, reskilling can help employees feel more engaged and fulfilled in their work.
  • Increased earning potential. Reskilling can lead to increased earning potential as employees take on new roles or responsibilities within the organization.

How to Design and Implement a Reskilling Program

Building a reskilling program requires careful planning and execution. The list below offers step-by-step guidance to ensure your reskilling program is thorough and effective.

Step 1: Assess the Need

The first step in designing a reskilling program for your organization is to identify the skills and competencies that are required to achieve your business goals and identify areas where your workforce lacks the necessary skills. This could involve conducting a skills audit, analyzing performance data or seeking feedback from employees or managers. For example, if one of your business goals is to have every client contacted by phone before their third missed payment, skills and competencies needed to meet that goal would be understanding accounts receivable’s software and competency in making phone calls. Reskilling employees to advance their careers in these areas could help the company progress towards that goal.

Step 2: Communicate the Need

For your reskilling program to be successful, it's important for everyone to be on the same page, including senior leaders, managers and employees. Communicate the benefits of reskilling and ensure that everyone understands the value it can bring to the organization and individual employees. Consider developing a communication plan as part of your reskilling program to ensure everyone is kept up-to-date on the progress and impact of the program.

Step 3: Develop Learning Objectives

Once the needed skills are identified, prioritize these skills and focus your reskilling efforts on developing them. Develop learning objectives for the reskilling program based on these skills. Learning objectives should be specific and measurable, and they should align with the organization's overall goals and objectives. For instance, if the organization needs more employees with data analytics skills, the learning objectives might include mastering data visualization tools, understanding statistical analysis techniques and developing the ability to communicate insights to stakeholders.

Step 4: Develop a Strategy

Once you identify the critical skills your organization will benefit from, it's time to develop a reskilling strategy. This should include a plan for how you will communicate the opportunity to employees and how training will be delivered, as well as how you will measure the impact reskilled employees have on your business goals. Consider factors such as the types of training programs you will offer, who will be heading up the training (will it be done in house, by external training providers, a mix of both?), the format of the training (in-person, online) and how you will incentivize employees to participate.

Step 5: Deliver the Training/Set a Training Schedule

Once the program has been developed, it’s time to deliver the training. Depending on the skills being taught, a single training session may or may not be enough. In cases where complex skills are being learned, multiple training dates may be necessary. Consider scheduling training sessions in a way that minimizes disruption to work, and provide employees with the resources they need to succeed. Employees may also benefit from assigned mentors or coaches to provide additional support, answer questions and provide guidance.

Step 6: Measure and Evaluate

Finally, it's important to measure and evaluate the success of your reskilling program. This will help you identify areas for improvement and make adjustments to your program as needed. Consider metrics such as employee engagement, productivity and performance, feedback from employees and managers, and of course, progress toward reaching the goals specified in step 1. Use this data to refine your reskilling strategy and ensure that your program continues to meet the needs of your organization and its employees.

Methods for Measuring the Return on Investment (ROI) of Your Reskilling Program

Measuring the ROI of a reskilling program is important to ensure that the resources invested in the program are being utilized effectively. Here are three methods that can be used to measure the ROI of a reskilling program:

Cost-Benefit Analysis

One way to measure the ROI of a reskilling program is through a cost-benefit analysis. Start by listing all the costs of the program, including things like training materials, instructors and facilities. Then take a look at the benefits the program provides, such as increased productivity, higher retention rates and better employee morale. Figure out the monetary value of the benefits and compare them to the costs to determine if the program is providing a positive return on investment.

Pre- and Post-Training Assessments

Another method to measure the ROI of a reskilling program is through pre- and post-training assessments. This means testing employees on their knowledge and skills before and after they complete the program. Comparing the results of these assessments will show whether the program has actually enhanced their abilities. You can also estimate the monetary value of these improvements by gauging how much they could impact productivity or revenue.

Use an ROI Calculator

Use an ROI calculator like this free one. To use an ROI calculator, start by gathering all the essential data related to your reskilling program. The calculator may require different data depending on the type of training you provide. This can include costs such as tuition fees, books, materials and instructor fees, as well as benefits such as increased productivity, higher salaries and lower turnover rates. After collecting all the necessary data, input it directly into the ROI calculator to determine the ROI.
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Kayla Farber

Kayla Farber

Kayla is the Chief Innovation Officer at Hero Culture, where the passion is to create company cultures of retention using the power of personality.
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Frequently asked questions
Other Related Terms
Adult Learning Principles
Career Coach
Career Pathing
Cross Training
E-Learning
Employee Development
Employee Empowerment
Employee Leadership Development
Group Training
Individual Development Plan
Job Shadowing
Learning & Development Statistics
Lunch and Learns
Manager Training
Mentoring
Networking
Rotational Program
Skills Gap Analysis
Skills Inventory
Soft Skills
Stretch Assignment
Time Management Training
Training Needs Analysis/Assessment
Upskilling
Virtual Team Building
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