Did you know…Australian businesses spend $4.6 billion on training and $7 billion on recruitment each year? Find out how your business can benefit from upskilling and reskilling your employees.

Did you know…Australian businesses spend $4.6 billion on training and $7 billion on recruitment each year? Find out how your business can benefit from upskilling and reskilling your employees.

The pandemic and recent technological advancements have transformed many workplaces. This is coupled with today’s ever-evolving and highly competitive business environment. It is critical now, more than ever, to upskill and reskill your employees.

Did you know… Australian businesses spend $4.6 billion on training and $7 billion on recruitment each year?

In many cases, it is far more cost effective to upskill or reskill your existing workforce where possible when compared with the cost of recruitment.  Recruiting a new employee can range up to 2.5 times the cost of the annual salary when the costs of the recruitment process itself plus loss of productivity, on-boarding, training and client satisfaction issues.

Yes that’s right, it can be far more cost effective for your business to upskill or reskill your existing workforce when compared with the cost of recruiting a new employee. 

So the question then is… how does your business benefit from upskilling and reskilling your existing workforce?

Firstly, a critical element of an effective business strategy is to have a learning and development plan that includes both an  upskilling  and  reskilling. Upskilling and reskilling refers to the learning and development opportunities offered by a business to its employees.

While the two words are often used interchangeably, there are significant differences in their definitions:

  • To upskill  is to provide training enhancing an employee’s current skill set, allowing them to grow in their current role and bring added value to your business.
  • To “reskill  is essentially retraining an employee for a new position; a process commonly used when an employee’s role becomes redundant and you look to retain them by training in a new discipline.

Although mainly associated with advancements in technology in post-pandemic times, upskilling and reskilling are also vital for the continued development;  of the skills of your workforce, not to mention the intrinsic value-add to employee morale, on the job satisfaction, productivity, staff retention and loyalty.

Let’s explore, why upskilling and reskilling is important to your business?

Upskilling and reskilling should deliver a valuable return on investment to your business. By promoting continued learning and development as part of your business culture, you can boost employee job satisfaction, remain competitive and positively impact your bottom line when you tap into the the full potential of your workforce.

Here are four factors associated with the importance of upskilling or reskilling at work including:

1.       Retaining Top Talent

Continued learning plays a significant role in job satisfaction. Employees now look to employers for learning and development opportunities. The risk when these opportunities are not made available is that there is higher likelihood the employee(s) will move on. Providing plenty of opportunities for learning and development at work means you are far more likely to attract and then hold on to top talent.

2.       Encourages positive employee engagement and builds team culture

Investing in your employees and business builds immense goodwill, trust and boosts employee morale while fostering a positive team culture. These all combine to engage your workforce who will then deliver results and perform at an optimum level.  These qualities are second to none when it comes to managing your workforce effectively and efficiently as a leader.

3.       Overcoming the digital skills gap

The need for technical proficiency is no longer confined to the IT department. Digital technologies have entered every area of business operation, particularly in recent times for the remote and working from home employees. For digital to be used effectively, it will require you to have a workforce with relevant knowledge and capabilities; upskilling in the use of hardware and software is a must to ensure a seamless work environment.

4.      Avoiding unnecessary cost associated with a new recruitment

An increasingly competitive marketplace means more businesses are tightening their budgets. Filling a skills gap through new hires or temporary contract workers may seem like a sensible option but it can be costly because of the time delays associated with recruitment.

Whilst upskilling and reskilling also require investments of both time and money, there is no on boarding or loss of productivity involved. The skills gained remain a permanent fixture of the business, often leading to cost savings in the long run.

How to avoid reskilled and upskilled employees moving on to other organisations?

A key concern Akyra hears from clients is the overshadowing fear that, if you invest in learning and development training or re-skilling of an existing workforce, they may leave shortly thereafter to pursue alternative employment, with their newly acquired skillsets in hand.

Akyra’s top two recommendations to avoid this scenario occurring is, prior to any re-skilling, upskilling or training occurring, your employee signs a ‘training policy’ agreement that covers either of the scenarios below:

  1. Identify the employee’s intention to stay on in the position for a minimum designated period  - e.g. six months (something like a bond… but not too long or it will be seen as ‘slavery’); or
  2. An agreement to pay back the training costs to you should they leave the business within a designated period – usually on a sliding scale (e.g. 100% at 6 months after completion, 50% at nine months and nothing at 12 months).

By designing a learning and development upskilling plan for your business, you encourage continuous learning; your business benefits the combined talents of your workforce and ensures all employees feel relevant in, and engaged with, your businesses culture… the payoff usually being improved performance, productivity and results.

The benefits of upskilling and reskilling are many, but they will only be achieved through a carefully considered strategy designed around business objectives and skills deficiencies.

It can be a daunting prospect for businesses and managers to not only know where to start, but how to manage your skills deficiencies or training requirements.  

Akyra can provide you with a review of your workforce to identify any skills gaps or upskilling requirements... plus, a multitude of additional HR tailored services and support to ensure you have a learning and development strategy targeted at your specific business needs and strategic growth plans. 

Every industry and business will have unique requirements and for further guidance or advice on human resource management. CONTACT US NOW to book a time to discuss any areas of HR concern; after which we will provide a way forward where it might be needed.

Disclaimer – Reliance on Content

The material distributed is general information only. The information supplied is not and is not intended to be, legal or other professional advice, nor should it be relied upon as such. You should seek legal or professional advice in relation to your specific situation.

Sources:  HRMonline.com.au, February 2021. Wikijobs.com.uk, March 2021.





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