Mindset and Organizational Culture Towards Skill Transformation

In this era of massive IT transformation, there is a significant change in how businesses look at providing value to customers. There is also an increasing need for a workforce that is ready to deliver and adapt to the technology change. Organizations, however, are struggling with skill transformation to support all the industry’s rapid changes. New-age technology like AI and cloud Computing has transformed how the workforce interprets work tasks and executes them. While the IT Industry is constantly changing and innovations are breaking barriers, every organization needs to be aware of letting go of legacy practices, aligning strategy to truly transform the workforce, and driving a change in the mindset and a culture change. Often we see that an organization intends to change and might show intent to transform, but at the core, the “ways of working” are old school and there is misalignment with strategic goals.

Before embarking on Skill Transformation, leaders must get a perspective on the below to focus time and effort on enabling best practices.

  • A clear understanding of the Organization’s Strategic goals and business model.
  • Business drivers needed to achieve outcomes.
  • Understand Opportunities and challenges for people to learn and grow.

Leaders need to adopt practices to transform the workforce and their skills and follow an iterative approach that will lead to a successful skill transformation. Below is a view of what those practices should be.

Assess Potential Skill Gap

Identifying the capability gap is the most difficult and important challenge faced by leaders today. To close this gap, It’s important to first understand what is the strategic ambition of an organization, how the business is aligned to meet that ambition, and the current gaps in terms of skills that are needed to drive goals. So,

  • Assessing Demand – Check which areas of the organization are transforming, which strategic areas investment is made into, what services need to be harvested and sold to the customers, etc.
  • Review Supply – Looking inward at the employee mix at all levels and the skill profile they have vis-a-vis the roles that people perform and how the labor workforce will move from one type of work profile to another over time.
  • Analyzing skills gaps using a combination of tools and evaluation methods.

Developing a Skills Strategy

Once there is a view of the skill gap, it’s important to determine what kind of strategy needs to be put in place to enable outcomes. This strategy needs to be backed up by Leadership support, investment, and sponsorship for execution at all levels.

This should ideally include:

  • Designing programs and other initiatives to close skill gaps. These programs can be designed and curated for the varied employee pool (e.g. Leadership learning journeys for Managers and Senior Executives).
  • Design Learning Paths and curated training programs for different employees basis where maximum impact is needed.
  • Review the learning mechanism and the infrastructure that needs to be enabled and invested in. This might mean revamping existing structures altogether

Evaluate System and Processes for Skilling at Scale

Skill strategy should not be a piecemeal effort but it should involve execution and delivery of skill building at scale. This should ensure that there are dedicated organizational structures in place for continuous learning and a rigorous and dynamic system for tracking the impact. Learning Measurement and its application in work tasks, and projects is something that needs to be reviewed and tracked periodically.

In essence, evaluation should include:

  • Having an enterprise skill planning, and execution layer that is dedicated to learning and transforming people’s capability. Couple this with top-down communication that explains why transformation is necessary and its benefits in the long run.
  • Deliver skill transformation at scale so that every employee’s focus is on career development and the application of learning in his/her work.
  • Having a system wherein we track Learning investment versus work impact and its associated ROI is tracked.

A truly transformed workforce will lead the organization to drive more change, pitch more business to the customers, and provide an edge over its competitors. Building a transformed workforce coupled with agility, and speed is what will help to realize organization strategy, employee performance and satisfaction, and reputation as an employer.

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