Are You Future-Ready? Check Out These 5 Skills Your Workforce Needs


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Tuesday, November 15, 2022

The changing nature of work has seen many organisations embrace technology, invest in artificial intelligence (AI) and maximise the power of automation. However, being future-ready is about more than investing in the tools you need. It’s also about your people and ensuring they’re able to keep up with the changes and are ready for the future.

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Are You Future-Ready? Check Out These 5 Skills Your Workforce Needs
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A recent Deloitte survey found that 74% of organisations consider reskilling their workforce important or very important to their success over the next 12 to 18 months. The same survey found employees agree, with 90% saying they need to update their skills at least annually. Providing your people with the opportunities to succeed and remain a valuable resource means upskilling and ensuring they have the right skill sets for the future.

5 skills your workforce needs to be future-ready

Futureproofing your people is about both technological advancement and recognising those innately human skills that algorithms or machines can’t replace. These five skills will help ensure your people and organisation are ready for the future.

1. Digital literacy

82% of online postings for jobs in the UK require basic digital skills, which will only become more important. Digital literacy includes the basics of using computerised technologies but also being able to adapt and quickly get to grips with new digital tools and applications.

Digitally literate people may have a wide range of competencies to effectively perform in our digital-first world. This can include computer problem-solving skills, communication tools, cybersecurity, data privacy management, information search skills, and social media. Digital literacy can seem limitless, and in some ways, it is. The future workforce was born into a world where we are always connected, so their innate ability to adapt to all digital changes is a powerful skill to harness.

2. AI-friendly approach

The ideal employee of the future will be fully comfortable and adept at working alongside and with AI and machine learning. AI-powered tools are already becoming commonplace in some elements of the workplace, and your people have to be comfortable and confident working with this technology and accepting the benefits it brings.

With the acceptance of AI also comes an increased need for ethical awareness and further reinforcement of skills in this area. The need for social and emotional skills will accelerate as your people accept AI’s role in the workplace and where their skills need to fit around this.

3. Data analytics

95% of businesses in one survey admit they have to manage organised and raw data as part of their day-to-day work. This data is a hugely powerful and valuable resource for any organisation, but only if you have the skills to analyse, interpret, and use it. The wealth of data your organisation has, often due to effective AI implementation, means your people have to quickly pick up data analysis skills to maximise the value of said data.

PwC reported that 69% of employees would require data science and analytics skills from their candidates by the end of 2021. As 2023 is fast approaching, it’s vital you provide your people with the opportunity to build their data skills set. Data analytics skills can form part of your core training offering to new employees. They can include various elements, from analytical programming language acquisition to advanced Microsoft Excel and practical use of business intelligence software.

4. Emotional and social intelligence

There are some human qualities that can’t be replicated by machines. Emotional and social intelligence have become core competencies for your people as many basic tasks can be automated, and it’s their human nature and skills that have become most valuable. Emotional intelligent people benefit from social aptitudes such as the ability to resolve conflict, teach others and develop strong leadership skills.

As AI takes over when it comes to accuracy and fact-driven processes, your people can focus on their emotional and social skills to promote your organisation’s core values and deliver better customer experiences. Similar to emotional and social intelligence is resilience and adaptability. Many of your people worked and lived through the COVID-19 pandemic and this has shown just how crucial resilience is in surviving the most difficult of times.

5. Self-driven attitude

Research consistently tells us that Gen Z is made up of self-starters, driven to succeed and to look for companies that match their social conscience and values. As the world of work relies on technology more, the people who stand out will be committed to growth and driven to succeed. Organisations are recognising this and empowering their people through self-directed career management opportunities and the chance to take control of their own future development. As we’ve discussed before, as many as three-quarters of all organisations will have programmes and tools in place to support self-directed career management by 2024.

Setting up your people for a positive future

Giving your people the tools to compete in the tech-driven world of work is not just about downloading the latest software and showing them how to put it into play - it’s about auditing and assessing their skills and giving them the opportunity to upskill and develop the essential skills to be future-ready. Your organisation can invest in every kind of software and embrace AI, but without the right people performing to their highest ability, you won’t achieve the success you’re hoping for.

Cornerstone OnDemand

Cornerstone OnDemand (NASDAQ: CSOD) helps organisations to recruit, train and manage their people. We work with hundreds of the world’s largest companies—from Walgreens and Starwood Hotels & Resorts to Deutsche Post DHL and Xerox—and thousands of smaller ones to help them engage their workforces and empower their people. Our software impacts every aspect of the employee experience, helping people to make their best work even better – which ultimately translates into greater business results.


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