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Why Digital Upskilling is Critical for Innovation

Company growth in a technology-driven environment depends on whether its employees are equipped with a level of digital knowledge to help the business to grow.

digital upskilling

Image courtesy duedigital.com

CIOs have become so frustrated by the onslaught of marketing emails and solicitations that most have added extremely unforgiving filters to inboxes, simply to be able to do their jobs.

Free collaboration tools like Slack no longer require vetting and deployment by IT teams, but instead can easily be spun up by project teams working globally in different time zones.

Creative leaders, especially those in IT, know that the CIO role has evolved beyond selecting and implementing new technology to encouraging individual strengths that make up a successful team, as evidenced by an increasing frequency of CIOs moving into the CEO position.

So how can companies ensure the 20-something digital native newly hired into the marketing department is communicating seamlessly with the seasoned company veteran armed with institutional knowledge?

Besides hiring for cultural fit, organizations must ensure they’re offering accessible digital training for employees, both inside and outside the IT organization.

As Morten Dal, who heads internal communications at PANDORA suggested, while there’s certainly no shortage of technology tools for collaboration, workers may feel overwhelmed with so many different platforms and which one to use for what task. Before spearheading the creation of INFORA, the company’s first global digital workspace serving 25,000 employees, communications were very siloed. Management still relied on email as the primary communication delivery to reach its global workforce.

CIOs in the midmarket know that simply building a new application or plugging in an out-of-the-box solution without engaging stakeholders from the onset and budgeting appropriate time for training will result in unnecessary friction and frustration for users.

Whether it’s platform overload, fears around keeping pace with ever changing technology interface or even job loss due to automation or competitive disruption, there’s no denying that upskilling employees is key to advancing an organization’s digital maturity.

Daniel Newman, author of Futureproof, asserts that most organizations still lack a workforce that can make AI and automation function within their company. Instead of fearing digital advances in automation, Newman suggests, “…retraining your current talent to meet the needs of the demand works better with your bottom line than rather than hiring a completely new workforce of talent from the bottom up.”

In the midmarket, where digital maturity advances may come more slowly than in the Fortune 500, successful IT leaders tasked with driving digital innovation are strategically balancing the mission critical IT skills shortages and knowledge gaps among existing workforces to keep their companies competitive.


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