Technology has revolutionized how every business operates, and it’s no different for yours. However, the increasing skills gap in the market means many companies need help to hire talented employees with the right digital skill sets to keep up with changing trends and technologies.
As a result, many organizations are stuck in a vicious cycle of having a shortage of skilled workers and not being able to invest enough time or money in training their existing employees. But there are things you can do about it.
The Increasing Skills Gap Concern
The skills gap is a serious issue that affects all industries and countries. Many factors, including the rapid rate of technological development and the increasing complexity of technologies, cause it.
The skills gap is also a global issue. Still, it’s especially pronounced in certain regions like Africa, where the lack of computer literacy makes it difficult for young people to find jobs or otherwise participate in the economy.
Most businesses are already facing these problems. And those who aren’t expected to face it in the future. According to a recent survey by McKinsey, 87% of companies say they already have or will soon have a skills gap.
The actual problem here is the significance of the skills gap. The World Economic Forum predicted in 2018 that over 50% of employees would need reskilling by 2022, and it was true. However, the problem has only grown since then. Even though many employers have helped their employees reskill, many jobs remain unfilled.
Factors Contributing to the Increasing Skills Gap
As the tech skills gap continues to grow, it is becoming more and more difficult for employers to find skilled workers. The skills gap is getting worse as time passes and will continue. A study by Korn Ferry states that around 85 million jobs can go unfilled by 2030, leading to an $8.5 trillion talent shortage.
This problem has been around for a long time and will likely last well into the future unless you address some of its root causes:
- The education system is not equipped to teach students technical skills.
- Employers do not provide adequate training and development opportunities for workers.
- There are fewer opportunities for young people to gain hands-on experience with technology because schools don’t have the resources necessary to implement them.
How to Bridge Tech Skills Gap
While the growing skills gap is a huge concern, there are ways to overcome it at your company. Here are some things you can do to bridge the skills gap.
Seek Help From a Staffing Agency
If you’re struggling to find the right talent, consider partnering with a staffing agency. These companies specialize in recruiting and hiring for companies across industries. Data from IBIS World shows that around 11,527 staffing agencies are operating in the USA. You can pick one of these and seek their help.
Staffing agencies can help you find suitable candidates for your open positions quickly and easily because they already have established relationships with many of the best tech professionals. Hence, collaborating with a staffing service provider is the best option to get help finding talented employees.
Additionally, these agencies will ensure that all your candidates are qualified and a good fit for your company culture because they’ve met them before. Hence, if you aren’t sure what kind of person would be interested in joining your team or if one candidate seems more suited, don’t worry.
The staffing agency has probably seen many more candidates than you have. They’ll also screen each potential hire on behalf of their clients, which allows them to focus their efforts on finding only those qualified for jobs based on specific criteria from clients’ needs lists.
Run Training Programs to Help Existing Employees Learn New Skills
A training program can be an effective way to help your existing employees learn new skills. Hence, many companies are investing in employee training. According to the 2021 Training Industry Report, small, mid, and large enterprises have a dedicated budget for training employees. On average, large enterprises dedicate $17.5 million, medium-sized companies dedicate $1.3 million, and small businesses dedicate over $341,000 for training.
The most important thing is to ensure the training is relevant to your company’s needs so that you’re not wasting time and money teaching people things they will never use on the job. When choosing topics for training, look at where your employees need improvement and select topics from there.
For example, if you want to improve customer service skills across the board and it seems like many of your employees aren’t able to effectively deal with customers’ needs over email or phone calls, consider running a course on how to communicate more effectively with customers through written communication channels.
Training should also be engaging and interactive for people who are learning something new, so they do not get bored or lose interest before finishing it. And although long-term programs might seem like a good idea at first glance, they’re often ineffective because they don’t allow employees enough practice before their next lesson takes place. Hence, keep the training programs short and effective.
Offer Additional Benefits to Employees
One way to improve employee morale is by offering additional benefits to employees. This may include a flexible work environment, health insurance, paid leaves, life insurance, etc. The Employee Benefit Trends Report shows that employees prefer these benefits over others. Offering these benefits will allow you to attract new talents and retain existing ones.
For example, if you can offer your employees the ability to work from home or remotely, this will allow them more flexibility in their lives outside of work and more time for themselves. A great benefit for small businesses looking for ways to bridge the tech skills gap would be allowing employees some degree of freedom when it comes down to how they operate their day-to-day jobs.
Another way small businesses can bridge the tech skills gap is by providing fun activities like team-building exercises where everyone gets together outside of normal working hours. When employees are engaged, they will be more likely to learn new skills. Moreover, engagement will also allow them to focus more on new skills.
It’s clear that there is a skills gap in your company, and it is affecting your ability to grow. The good news is that you have options for tackling this problem. You can work on training programs for existing employees, hire new talent, offer additional employee benefits, or change your hiring strategy altogether. As the company’s CEO, it’s up to you to determine what strategy will work best for your situation and help you overcome this challenge.