Article: Skills will be the currency of the new workplace: Cornerstone CEO Himanshu Palsule


Skills will be the currency of the new workplace: Cornerstone CEO Himanshu Palsule

To stay competitive, organisations must empower their employees to consistently develop new skills so they can respond and adapt to changing environments.
Skills will be the currency of the new workplace: Cornerstone CEO Himanshu Palsule

A regular turnover is not a very welcome development for companies but a contributing factor to the phenomenon is that employees don’t see opportunities to grow their skills and their careers at the current jobs within their present companies.

Amid today’s dynamic workforce landscape, it is clear that if organisations want to stay competitive, they must retain their top talent and empower their employees to consistently develop new skills so they can respond and adapt to changing environments.

Himanshu Palsule, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Cornerstone OnDemand, a specialist in adaptive cloud-based HR software solutions, says organisations need to align their purpose and goals with the personalised skills development of their employees.

“Upon joining Cornerstone, I went on a listening tour, visited six countries, and over 60 different customers. Since then, I have been to more countries around the world and spoken to hundreds of organisations about how to solve talent and learning issues. From these conversations, one thing is quite clear: skills have become the new workplace currency,” Palsule says.

He adds that the number of skills required per job is fast increasing which has led to a further widening of skill gaps. While there is a growing realisation among organisations and their leaders to upskill their employees, according to Gartner, 47% of HR leaders have reported not knowing what skills gaps their current employees have.

In an exclusive interview with People Matters, Palsule dwells upon the top challenges in skill training and development that organisations face today and skilling trends to look out for in 2023.

Critical skill training challenges and how to overcome them

Many companies are challenged with identifying skills across their workforce for current and future roles, delivering skills training in the time of need, and providing all employees access to learning and growth opportunities, personalised and recommended directly to them.

So, what are the world’s leading companies doing in this area? Walmart, the largest private employer in the US, announced in 2021 that it would invest nearly $1 billion over the next five years to provide its employees with free access to higher education and skills training.

Technology giant IBM is committed to upskill 30 million people globally by 2030.

Yes, investment is needed, however above all, organisations need to rethink their talent experience. They should focus on implementing a personalised, end-to-end experience for their people that continuously connects development (learning, content, and skill building) to new growth opportunities (marketplace of careers, communities of practice, mentors).

By creating this type of experience for employees, HR leads can ensure alignment between their talent strategy and business outcomes, while meeting the engagement and empowerment expectations of their people.

As digitalisation grows, we can expect a significant impact on employment and skills in the decades ahead, at all levels and in all sectors, hitting some industries harder than others.

Top skilling trends for techies in 2023

With the technology landscape continuing to advance, the demand for skill sets in new-age technologies is skyrocketing.

The World Economic Forum's Future of Jobs Report highlighted that 50% of all employees will need reskilling by 2025, as the adoption of technology increases.

In a recent Gartner report, testing is among the top five skills by demand volume in all industries in India.

Cloud platforms in the IT industry and automation in the manufacturing industry are new toppers by demand growth and demand volume, respectively.

Computer systems analysts, network and computer systems administrators and software application developers are among the top five occupations by demand volume across all industries.

Computer programmers are also among the top five occupations by demand growth across multiple industries.

Additionally, we are seeing continued jumps in demand for the below tech skills that will specifically enhance employees’ credibility and hireability:

Artificial Intelligence (AI) enhances the speed, accuracy and effectiveness of human efforts, thus increasing productivity, efficiency and reducing cost.

In today’s time, where agility is required, organisations are continuing to invest in AI to automate repetitive tasks and other business processes. With its application in almost all sectors today, such as health, manufacturing, logistics, banking, recruitment, etc, individuals with knowledge, skills and experience in AI are in high demand.

The top AI skills that are in demand include programming languages such as Python, R, and Java, linear algebra and statistics, signal processing techniques, and neural network architectures.

Big Data Analytics - Amongst all the innovations in the digital age, big data is probably one of the most impactful ones.

Big data usage has grown to the point where it touches nearly every aspect of our life. Thanks to big data analytics, Google Maps can tell us the least traffic-prone route to any destination.

Using big data analytics, organisations are analysing large amounts of data in the most efficient way possible to extract meaningful insights that enable them to make data-driven decisions and solve key business problems, including understanding customer behavior, predicting future business trends, detecting frauds, developing better products and services, and streamlining their operations.

The global big data market is forecast to grow to $103 billion by 2027, according to Statista. This will give rise to many job opportunities, but to succeed in this field, individuals need to learn different tools and techniques used for handling, managing, analysing and interpreting data including technical skills such as data mining, data visualisation and software such as Tableau, SPSS Modeler, Oracle, SQL, Python R, @Risk, Arena, Hadoop etc.

Cloud Computing, or storing and accessing data over the internet.

The pandemic accelerated the adoption of remote working which drove organisations to shift towards cloud-based applications and services to support remote working employees and retain customers.

We do see the increase in the usage of cloud-based tools for communication, project management, video-conferencing, file sharing, and more which will continue to remain a priority for organisations as they look to support employee collaboration and productivity, anywhere and anytime.

Amazon (Amazon Web Services, or AWS), Microsoft (Azure), and Google (Google Cloud Platform) maintain the most in-demand cloud platforms.

By 2027, more than 50% of enterprises will use industry cloud platforms to accelerate their business initiatives according to 2023 Gartner top strategic technology trends leading to job opportunities for cloud developers, cloud network engineers, cloud database administrators, cloud architects. and others.

Cloud computing skills that are in demand include cloud security, machine learning and AI, cloud deployment and migration across multiple platforms, database skills and DevOps.

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Topics: Skilling, Technology, Talent Management, Employee Engagement, #Outlook2023

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