Skills mapping, in pursuit of growth
Skills mapping is crucial to delivering successful employee training. Why? The truth is that skills gaps are on the rise. Gartner research has projected that employees aren’t prepared for future roles, with 33% of skills in 2019 jobs postings made obsolete by 2024. The tricky part is that tackling skills gaps efficiently can’t begin until businesses have answered one deceptively simple question: what skills do you have in your organization today? That’s where skills mapping comes in.
Skills mapping is an advantageous, practical, and inspiring way of improving and supporting employees at work. It can be a tool and a modern approach to creating actual people development. So, what is skills mapping? In a nutshell, it’s a structured visualization of all the skills present in your organization and their levels.
You can also imagine it as a geographical map showing peaks (strengths) and valleys (undeveloped potential).
The best part of skills mapping is that it allows HR and managers to get all the coordinates and numbers to invite employees on a new engrossing quest. However, to reach your destination (goals), you’ll first need a compass (or a map) to get there.
Easy? Well, if you have a digital and user-friendly tool like this one, yes. I am not suggesting you create an employee skills matrix manually. Not at all!
So, back to the skills map, it’s important to understand that you have to use it properly once you build it, and we need to spot and fill the skills gap to benefit from it. As the words suggest, there will be areas to be improved and skills to be strengthened in some departments.
One particularly fascinating thing worth mentioning here is that skills mapping is a transparent and democratic method to analyze people’s talent and potential. Think about it. With various backgrounds, educational paths, and experiences, we tend to have some pre-assumptions about individuals’ preparation at work.
Using skills mapping can help employees leverage their knowledge and access relevant employee training content to develop new capabilities.
What you can & should do with skills mapping
Since we have tackled the importance of skills mapping, we can now turn our attention to its unique and powerful advantages. As you decide to map your employees’ skills, you will get an insightful and complex image of your organization. At this point, you should consider these six benefits that will help improve your business:
- Increased retention – the times are changing, and the HR world is no less evolving. The main preoccupation is represented by keeping people satisfied with their current employment. The information collected from skills mapping offers an excellent input to identify proper training hence an effective motivational drive for your workforce.
- Awe-inspiring training - the digital world (aka the Internet) tosses so many inputs on our desks, constantly and relentlessly. As human beings, we tend to be distracted and confused but still hungry for more during our lifetime. Learning is paramount to motivating people at work and filling the skills gap.
- Constant productivity – once you understand what your employees are missing in terms of skills and learning, you can fully support them with ad hoc training and impact their performance seamlessly. As we all know, intermittent productivity can result from multiple factors, including missing actionable training and authentic engagement. Please keep in mind that skills mapping can also function for designated teams working on a specific project.
- Powerful collaboration – a brilliant piece of advice is to ensure enough knowledge sharing as a natural consequence of skills mapping. Being transparent with your team and leaders about what could be improved can be one of the best ways to foster cooperation and promote a fruitful feedback culture between peers as well as between managers and employees.
- Sharper recruitment - sometimes, companies hire with high speed and forget about their current pains while looking for solutions that could fall out of the sky. Instead, it would be highly beneficial to leverage skills mapping before interviewing fresh candidates. Individuals bring their baggage of skills, but pinpointing which ones are missing and needed in the company is a critical aspect.
- Remarkable onboarding – skills mapping is clearly linked to reboarding and onboarding processes. If you know what your new hires need to improve, why not offer them the best training possible from the very beginning? Once you have an overview of the company, it’s easier to set clear development goals for all your employees.
So, it’s evident that skills mapping is a combination of investigating what is missing and imagining what could be better. On the one hand, you start nurturing daily motivation, and on the other hand, you boost business productivity with ad hoc training and an optimized people development plan.
Ready to develop talent in your organization?
These days companies must work as learning hubs, not just salary providers. Employees should feel attracted to join an organization because of their future and possible development, thus the company’s values should always be rooted in a solid learning and development culture.
Similarly, the present employees are seeking extra attention regarding their growth. It’s not a simple wage raise request; it’s a matter of shared motivation. So, you can’t expect to have your working teams fully engaged when you are not investing in their career. It is as simple as that!
In their digital journey, McKinsey has promoted and implemented a concrete upskilling campaign spread through the entire organization (more than 500 colleagues in different roles). The reason? If you develop only a certain part of the workforce, you will not be able to make significant changes to your management and business mission. Undoubtedly, the focus on hiring new talent shouldn’t make the skill training process less important.
Basically, your current employees have something vital: the chronological knowledge gathered within the company. That’s why they contribute to the actual foundation of your business success. Remember that former colleagues can be part of your future development too!
In conclusion, mapping your workforce’s skills is the smartest and most effective way to grow and remain competitive in the marketplace.
Don’t miss this innovative way of leading your people and your company (and partners!) to reach continuous, satisfactory outcomes.