How to Future-Proof Your Workforce
Approaching workforce development as a dedicated, strategic initiative offers your business multiple benefits. And in these times of COVID with its economic uncertainty, it’s a robust means for future proofing both your workforce and your business.
Workforce development isn’t just about making your people a higher performance engine. It’s also about your business culture, and attitudinal issues, interconnected with people development. When these various components are a symbiosis of strategic action, your business becomes a powerful force, built for the long-haul.
When was the last time you consciously mapped out your organisation’s workforce development plan?
Training and Development
- Invest in your people through education and training.
- Incredible means of engaging workers (especially millennials) and boosting productivity
- Helps to deepen your in-house skillset
- Ensures your business moves with digital technology developments
- It’s a sure-fire means to obtain competitive advantage
In a recent study, Boston Consulting Group found 67% of workers are willing to retrain in any situation, while 29% would do so if they hit serious roadblock in a job search.
A Culture of Empowerment
- Your culture is a critical future-proofing opportunity
- Provide your workers with increased responsibility, in a well-managed and manageable framework
- This shows your workers you believe in them
- It also instils confidence in their role and in the business overall
- Eliminate the urge to micro-manage your workers: it will achieve the opposite effect of future proofing your workforce
- Establish a culture of ongoing, open lines of communications
- Be consistently clear with communicating business goals, and worker objectives
- And you’ll establish a culture of transparency and openness
- Transparency builds trust: a great measure of successful workforce development
- Make sure you communicate business, departmental and individual successes
Establish Worker-Led Initiatives
- Engage workers by letting them set the scene for their professional development
- This will enable them to grow in areas of interest to them
- It will also expand the skills available across your business
- Self-driven initiatives boost the worker’s willingness to participate
- Offer development & training in small, manageable segments. Worker’s will be more likely to embrace and complete the training
Establish a Digital Mindset
- Management needs to be aware of the ideal level of digital literacy, required to keep the business on track for growth projections
- On the back of this, they can audit current-state digital prowess across the business
- Providing digital workforce development programs will offer a strong foundation for business futureproofing
- Digital skill-mapping across departments will offer visibility of where your business needs more or less digital focus
Establish a Post-COVID Workforce Development Plan
- Many organisations will not return to a full-time, office-based working solution, once vaccinations are more widespread
- This calls for careful management of workers based onsite, offsite and those who will undertake a mix of both
- New communications practices are required to keep all workers engaged
- Fit-for-purpose workforce development solutions including software and hardware, plus new ways of doing business, will need to be explored
The concept of future-proofing your business through workforce development, is a strategy for adaptation at all levels. It’s important to note, leading by example here is crucial. Senior business leaders need to also grow their skills – both soft and hard – to future-proof the organisation’s management and leadership.
By establishing a learning-based culture, that consistently encourages talent to seek new skills and expertise, your business will have a forward-thinking mindset.
All of these workforce development initiatives will play to your strengths as a business powerhouse of today, and the future.
If you’d like to discuss workforce development strategies for your business, you can reach me here. I look forward to hearing from you.