How can businesses effectively upskill their workforce?

In this modern era of business, it is becoming increasingly easier to upskill. Within a single company, the base of experience, knowledge and potential may extend far beyond expectations within a worker's current role.

How can your business use HR strategies and policies to help tap into the skills within your workforce?

Getting the most out of your administrative professionals

As stated by Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam, upskilling and extending the scope of a worker's role can offer significant benefits to both individuals and the business. 

Upskilling can offer significant benefits to both individual and the business.

However, a recent survey from the organisation found that 50 per cent of administrative professionals felt their skillsets are not being tapped to their full potential. A further 7 per cent stated that they were "completely underutilised". 

Many admin workers had informal experience in fields such as social media and event planning, as well as strong connections with departments like finance and accounting. Organisations can easily take advantage of this experience by supporting training to cement these knowledge bases. 

Becoming strategically focussed

HR departments are shifting from a supportive function to a key agent in long term planning. According to a survey conducted among members of The International Public Management Association for Human Resources (IPMA-HR), 80 per cent consider themselves strategic partners within the business.

However, there are still considerable barriers for HR's contributions to long-term planning. In fact, 33 per cent of professionals stated they had no company-wide strategy and 27 per cent cited a lack of support from management. 

Executive Director of IPMA-HR Neil Reichenberg stated that workforce planning should become a much higher priority for HR. 

HR consulting can help build a better long-term training plan.HR consulting can help build a better long-term training plan.

"[Workforce planning] represents an opportunity and challenge for human resources professionals to undertake a leadership role in assisting their organisations", he said. 

"Of course, to do this successfully will require management support and sufficient resources."

Seeking assistance from HR consulting can be a good way to establish an effective training program and ensure HR professionals are playing their part in the wider strategy. 

Establishing effective training courses

A report from the Australian Industry Group found that training schemes were a good way to introduce new skills to employees, but the most effective structure will depend on the industry a company is in.

For example, the manufacturing and construction sector found informal programs delivered the best results, while the services sector favoured mentoring programs. For offices, 40 per cent of CEOs found in-house formal sessions were "'very successful", despite its position as the third-most popular option for training. 

Finding the right people to head these initiatives through temporary hire is a good option to get the specialist skills needed to train your workers. These professionals can select the appropriate system for your company and help unlock the potential within your long-term employees.