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Anne Rutledge – Executive Director Resourgenix Talent Solutions*
The rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has triggered a significant transformation in the skills actively required by employers. As AI advances, it has become increasingly crucial for employers to prepare their employees for this transformative era. One of the most effective approaches to assist employees in navigating this new world can be achieved through upskilling and reskilling your employees.
Imagine a world where AI seamlessly enhances every aspect of your workplace. AI has introduced the ability to automate various tasks, from mundane data entry to complex problem-solving. Not only has this created redundancy for certain low-level tasks but this shift has also created a growing demand for AI-related skills in the job market, especially for roles that involve repetitive tasks. Consequently, concerns have arisen about job displacement and the widening skills gap. How will organizations hire for mid level roles when no one has had experience in entry level positions if AI takes over such positions?
Employers and employees who embrace upskilling and reskilling are already ahead in their journey and are set to thrive in this changing landscape. Upskilling offers employees additional training to enhance their existing skills, while reskilling involves training them in entirely new skill areas.
At Resourgenix, a recurring trend has emerged in our interactions with clients: an increasing demand for AI expertise among prospective hires. What captures the attention of the hiring managers is the capacity for individuals to proactively enhance their skill sets, demonstrating agility in acquiring new proficiencies through reskilling or upskilling. This attribute has become a compelling magnet for talent acquisition, especially in the recruitment of key, pivotal roles.
We have found that businesses who have implemented strategies to safeguard their workplaces are focusing on the following key deliverables:
- Data Proficiency: As AI and machine learning technologies become available to all, there is an increasing need for professionals who can interpret and analyse data generated by these systems. While data is readily available to all companies, the ability to interpret and provide valuable insights is what drives key decisions.
- AI and Machine Learning Competence: AI goes beyond automation; it also involves augmentation. For example, software developers and IT specialists can undergo reskilling to understand and apply AI and machine learning algorithms in their tasks.
- Digital Proficiency and Cybersecurity Expertise: With the expansion of AI, employees need to navigate digital platforms securely. Upskilling employees in digital literacy and reskilling them in cybersecurity enhances a company’s AI investments, ensuring responsible and secure usage.
- Boosting Employee morale and retention: Expanding upskilling and reskilling opportunities can increase employee satisfaction and loyalty. When employees see their employer investing in their growth, their commitment to the organization deepens.
To be set up for the future, businesses play a pivotal role in facilitating upskilling and reskilling initiatives. By continually assessing their workforce’s existing skills and identifying gaps, companies can introduce methods for employee skill development.
- Building a Skills Repository: Creating a platform that houses employees’ skill profiles across all job categories, including permanent and contingent workers, provides insights into skill gaps and hidden talents. This encourages employees to assess their proficiencies and identify areas for improvement.
- Skill Assessment Tests: Online tools that offer skill assessment tests can objectively evaluate employee skills and pinpoint areas where improvement is required.
- Providing Training Opportunities: Companies that offer a variety of training options, from in-house sessions to online courses, have an advantage in the evolving skills landscape.
Our journey with our clients has seen success where talent pools are established with a focus on skill sets relevant to their talent needs. These pools encompass not only the talents within our clients’ existing workforce but also extend to external resources, including non-permanent workforce. The key to the success of this Talent Solution lies in harnessing the power of AI and machine learning, which, bring to the forefront the opportunities that are matched to the candidate or employee’s skills.
Discussions about AI often focus on hard skills, soft skills are equally important. These soft skills are essential for understanding outcomes and resolving challenges effectively:
- Innovative Problem-Solving: This skill is fundamental to all others. Optimal problem-solving involves selecting the right approach, assessing available resources, and continuously reassessing the problem to find solutions.
- Decision-Making: Given the many ways AI can be used, the ability to weigh pros and cons when selecting the right approach to a problem is crucial. Starting with the wrong algorithm can lead to future complications.
- Effective Communication: This remains a key skill because there is often a gap between the technical and business aspects of AI. Teams need to be able to bridge this gap through clear communication.
The AI revolution presents both challenges and opportunities. Employers and employees who embrace upskilling and reskilling, are future-proofing themselves and with this in place employers can promote employee growth but also contribute to overall business success. The era of collaborative progress between humans and AI is here—a future where advancement thrives through collaboration, innovation, and shared progress.
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