Employee Skill Development: Everything You Need to Know

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Employees switch jobs more than ever before. Investing in your workforce is a must. Companies that don’t provide enough growth opportunities risk lower engagement, higher difficulty maintaining a talented staff and the possibility of losing top performers. That’s why more leaders focus on upskilling their team with tools like learning management systems.

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Employee Skill Development Benefits


In an Indeed Hiring Lab survey, 75% of employed job seekers got new opportunities, and 99% said they’d take the interview. To shed light on this issue, let’s look at why skills are important, how to determine what information workers need, and how organizations can cultivate a culture of improvement.

Why Employee Talents Matter

We are in the middle of a skills gap crisis. According to a study from the Society for Human Resource Management, 83% of HR professionals noticed a decrease in applicants’ quality, with one-third citing a lack of technical abilities. Teaching employees new skills affects retention and turnover rates and leads to losses. As one Gartner study found, 40% of workers who left businesses voluntarily list poor career growth as a key factor.

If that’s not convincing enough, here are the key benefits that development adds to an organization:

1. Attracting Top Talent

Driven, successful people want learning opportunities. High performers achieve 400% more than average performers. It’s not just good praxis to keep them happy; it’s essential to a company’s health.

2. Developing Your Staff

Employees have a good understanding of their career goals and are always looking for ways to reach their potential. If their current workplace doesn’t have sufficient programs, they’ll look for one that does.

3. Succession Planning

Investing in workers today means creating managers for tomorrow. Without strong leadership, teams fall apart. That’s why you need a succession plan. By investing in personal and professional growth — coupled with the use of talent management software that automates this process — you can identify candidates who add the most to a company.

4. Engagement

Career growth keeps people motivated. With a clear plan and well-defined goals, your staff is much more likely to improve. According to Gallup, engaged workers yield better outcomes, attract new customers, treat existing customers better and are more likely to stay.

5. Performance and Productivity

Talent is the greatest asset of any organization, so you need to protect and invest in them like any other resource. Training opportunities contribute to better employee retention and overall increases in productivity.

Absorb LMS

Learning management systems can help motivate employees and boost productivity.

6. Continuous Improvement

Incorporating workshops, industry-specific conferences and learning materials about new developments can all be effective tools in making sure that your workforce is ahead of the curve in your industry. You don’t want to play catch-up with the competition.

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How to Determine the Most Important Skills

Figuring out the right competencies for your team helps everyone. While buy-in from workers is essential, managers need a roadmap to progress their careers. Here are a few factors to consider:

1. Industry Awareness

Keeping up with trends can be difficult. Technology and best practices are shifting faster than ever, so even the most eager-to-learn can fall behind. Use an efficient LMS to monitor the most relevant info.

LMS for Training Staff

An LMS can help you deliver new training info to your staff ASAP.

From the day a new person joins the team, there must be a clear strategy for promoting and encouraging communication between colleagues or between different level positions in the organization. Strong communication reaps big benefits and makes the workplace more pleasant for current and prospective employees.

2. Communication

From the day a new person joins the team, there must be a clear strategy for promoting and encouraging communication between colleagues or between different level positions in the organization. Strong communication reaps big benefits and makes the workplace more pleasant for current and prospective employees.

3. Technology

Industry-specific software solutions are a reality for most businesses, so there has to be a system in place for training quickly and effectively. While technology is becoming more intuitive each year, they’re also changing faster than ever. Both organizations and individuals must be ready to adapt quickly.

Here are just a few crucial tech abilities in 2020, according to CIO:

  • Java
  • SQL
  • .NET
  • JavaScript
  • Python
  • Linux
  • C
  • C#
  • C++
  • Amazon Web Services

4. Soft Skills

AI and automation are becoming more prevalent. That’s why soft skills are on the rise. They’re especially needed in leadership to attract and retain top talent and mitigate future problems. Here are some of the most important according to LinkedInLearning:

  • Creativity
  • Persuasion
  • Collaboration
  • Adaptability
  • Emotional Intelligence

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How to Increase Company-Wide Education

Once you’ve identified where knowledge is lacking, it’s time to fill those gaps. Here’s how to ensure the smooth integration of a development plan:

1. Strategize

Many companies haven’t established an efficient strategy for staff education. It’s usually more of a bureaucratic procedure than an actual plan. Sometimes, it’s not addressed at all. A skills gap analysis helps employers identify the difference between what they need and what their current workforce can offer.

Saba LMS

Investing money in learning and development can reduce employee turnover.

2. Invest in Tech

Companies use appropriate LMSs to track education, competencies and previous or ongoing training. Then, they can match them with the company’s goals, allowing employers to establish clear benchmarks for different roles. For the early stages of hiring, a talent management system can observe candidates and identify opportunities.

3. Address Skill Gaps

Once an organization implements its LMS, managers can not only identify gaps but fill them through new hires or reskilling current hires. It can also serve as a platform for training and development, easily integrating multiple e-learning solutions, webinars, classes, conferences and much more.

4. Scale It

With one-on-one coaching, it’s challenging to coordinate training through multiple locations. Information can get lost or corrupted in this game of telephone. A cloud-based LMS ensures that training is consistent and available to everyone. By choosing an LMS with high automation that integrates with your pre-existing HR or marketing tech and can accommodate a huge number of simultaneous users, you’ll ensure sustainability as your company grows.

5. Check In Regularly

Once the process is underway, it’s essential to know your team is engaged. Check-ins can be done through official meetings or via online messages. Even meetings not specifically about education can be a good forum for checking on learning. By discussing new skills and sharing them with the group regularly, it keeps an open dialogue about training for everyone.

6. Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Allocate the resources to make sure everyone feels they have a place in the workplace’s future. By investing in workers, you keep current workers and build a reputation to attract top talent from competitors. Prepare to add room in the budget if you’re serious about making training a priority.

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The Final Word

As the skills gap continues to grow, cultivating and retaining talent becomes more important. By focusing on industry-specific info, communication, tech and soft skills, companies become more productive with more engaged workers. By implementing regular check-ins, creating strategies and investing in growth, an organization creates a culture that encourages its staff to grow and flourish.

Team development has never been more pressing. You can either approach the problem head-on or risk getting left behind.

What Do You Think?

Are specific skills gaining prevalence in your industry? How has your company found challenges or opportunities in this area? What learning management tools have been most effective in learning and training? Leave us a comment below to join in the conversation!

Grace SavidesEmployee Skill Development: Everything You Need to Know

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