Closing the growing skills gap

June 5, 2017 Caitlin Leishman

One of the most pressing issues in the workplace today is lengthy job vacancies due to an increasing talent gap. A recent study shows that nearly 60% of North American employers have job vacancies that are open for three months or more, costing each company an average of $800,000 annually. This is a problem that needs to be solved in order to improve organizational efficiency, and economic productivity.

Why do we have a skills gap in the first place?

One of the main contributors to the skills gap is the effect of fast technological change. Roles are rapidly evolving, requiring more and more training. Positions that were once filled by those with high school diplomas are now requiring a college degree or more. Skill sets are becoming more sophisticated, and this process is not slowing down. These days skills have a shorter shelf life than ever before, and workers must continuously acquire and enhance their skill sets in order for their resumes to stay relevant.

What will it take to close the skills gap?

Part of addressing the skills gap will be an attitude shift on the part of workers towards education. Education needs to be seen as a lifelong journey, and employers need to take more responsibility for continuing training. For many people, cost is a significant barrier to continuing training, and some even end up failing to participate in the workforce because of it.

Where do competencies fit in?

Competencies are the perfect blend of skills, knowledge, and abilities required to articulate success on the job. Even if you don’t have a formal degree, competency-based programs are effective learning models for quickly developing skills. They make it easy to plan career moves in various directions, empowering workers to grow and develop instead of feeling discouraged. You can integrate your entire HR processes using competencies, meaning your learning and development is directly linked to hiring, engagement, succession planning, and more!

By supporting a competency-based learning model, you’re opening a new world of possibilities for your organization to grow, adapt, and succeed in these rapidly changing times. To learn more about how competencies can work for your organization, contact us today

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