How can HR departments tackle evolving skillsets through new ways of training? asks Darren Shimkus, vice president and general manager of Udemy for Business.
The UK is currently experiencing a gap in digital skills, which has become a real concern for the wellbeing of our economy. Companies are increasingly finding it more difficult to recruit staff with requisite and up-to-date skills, and must therefore find ways of addressing this.
Staff development is often seen as an expense – with large sums of money spent on external training and company workloads often too full to continually let staff out for the day. Businesses are becoming more dynamic in the way they work – shaped by technology – and must find the best and most efficient ways to carry out operations; this includes sourcing the most cost-effective and state-of-the-art training methods.
Businesses must therefore find new ways to ensure that staff have the most up-to-date training available to them whilst keeping an eye on costs to the organisation. This training therefore needs to be efficient - both in terms of its financial costs and for delivering the best information that will enhance the development of employees, while remaining flexible to the needs of the organisation.
Online learning is becoming an increasingly popular option to address this dilemma.
48% of online courses in the UK are technology-based, including programmes in web development, Java and app development. As well as lifelong learning, online learning can also be used by organisations to upskill staff. Popular training programmes include interpersonal communications and time management, as well as more practically relevant competences such how to use particular software, or using professional programming (for example, with accounting).
Online learning is also great for retaining and empowering employees, because workers can recognise investment towards their personal development that the company is making. It also gives employees the chance to learn without leaving the office, and lets them learn from experts around the world to progress their value to an organisation.
As technology is moving at such a fast pace, best practices and new software for training are rapidly evolving: increasing the need for digital learning to stay ahead of the game.
Failure to adapt to modern techniques of learning could see businesses fall behind their competitors and lose the ability to effectively develop their employees. This in turn can lead to difficulties in recruiting staff – a position that companies must fight to avoid.
Forward-thinking organisations must consider these implications, and put into place training that will provide up-to-date skills and practices to enrich the workforce and bring knowledge and expertise into its day-to-day operations. Online learning is one such way of achieving this; saving time, costs and inconvenience at the same time.
Udemy is an online education marketplace with over 8m students, more than 32,000 courses and 18,000 instructors. For companies, Udemy offers a subscription to our best business courses as well as an easy-to-use platform to create proprietary courses.