A report from learning management system TalentLMS has found that to help offset the workforce losses to the Great Resignation, companies are employing new tactics to make up for the lower number of employees. With the two-year anniversary of the start of the COVID-19 pandemic now past, organizations are still trying to find ways to address the talent shortage and skills gaps.
“While we’re going through what’s considered the biggest talent shortage in decades, with half of companies facing a skills gap, HR managers recognize the importance of bringing different generations of workers together, and of training on both hard and soft skills,” says Christina Gialleli, director of people operations at Epignosis.
The skills gap and lack of appropriate training
As the workforce shortages attributed to the Great Resignation continue, there are several problems still encountered by many workers. Namely, lack of proper training and a growing chasm between those with the needed skills to be successful in their respective fields. Of those surveyed, 52% said there was a skills gap within their organization, with 51% saying they are not getting the requisite amount of training to thrive long-term. This has caused many to look for additional training outside of their organization using their own time and resources to do so.
Another challenge faced by those making decisions below the executive level stem from budgetary constraints. According to the report, 54% of HR professionals surveyed agree that leadership often sees learning and development (L&D) as a cost and not as an investment. The approach of those in administrative positions is also leaving much to be desired, as over half are looking to bridge the gap by giving more responsibility to their existing employees, rather than hiring new employees to help fill the roles left open by the Great Resignation. This is unsustainable long-term as the workforce goes through its normal ebbs and flows of workers leaving for external opportunities.
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Proposed solutions for the skills gap
The new findings suggest that one way to make up for the reduced number of employees is additional training and increases to the L&D budget. According to the TalentLMS survey, 67% of HR managers will have an increased L&D budget this year alone. Forty-six percent already have specific training in place for new graduates who are entering the workforce and 42% offer training to support the re-entry of formerly retired employees.
Additionally, the report cites that those in charge of the L&D teams are being given a say at the corporate level for the first time ever. Nearly three-quarters of HR managers said they would invest in mental health and well-being training if they had a higher L&D budget, and 77% of HR managers are likely to focus on life skills within the next 12 months.
From an employee perspective, while 75% say they are content with the L&D in their companies, the following three aspects highlight the changes that still need to be made when catering to workers:
- 55% say they need additional training to perform better in their roles
- 38% advise companies to align training with job responsibilities
- One-in-two employees is pursuing learning opportunities on their own, outside of work training
Some of the most requested training for employees fell into the categories of time management, communication and collaboration, leadership, critical thinking and problem-solving. Diversity and inclusion training also is a priority for workers, as one-quarter of those surveyed said it was important.
By providing employees with the proper tools and resources, organizations can find themselves with a more satisfied workforce, reducing the chances of understaffing and the issues stemming from having disgruntled or lacking employees thus making the business more productive.