Focus on digital learning to build a future-ready workforce, CIO News, ET CIO

By Minaxi Indra

The workplace of the future is changing, and so are ways of working with the emergence of hybrid models and remote work models. While we see and hear of private sectors using a range of digital tools to upskill and retrain their employees, Indian PES have been equally active in harnessing these tools to achieve new heights of success.

With the onset of the pandemic, there was a realization that there was a need to improve workforce and leadership skills with skills such as hybrid team communication, change management, digital readiness and data, resilience, empathy, emotional intelligence, agility, critical and creative thinking, mindfulness and inclusivity. It has become essential for leaders to have the skills to manage future agile workplaces. The “new normal” has required drastic changes, with the relevance of middle managers and the development of their capabilities increasing exponentially.

In early 2020, Indian ESPs recognized these requirements and amended their leadership skills curriculum to accommodate future leadership skills. They have shown remarkable vision in structuring learning programs for entry-level and mid-level staff, taking into account workforce demographics, work patterns and learner types at the intermediate/beginner. They changed technical training the same way they changed other forms of training. Targeted skills development activities, which began over a decade ago and were eagerly supported by the highest levels of the Indian government, have had a significant influence on the culture of learning in Indian post-secondary institutions.

The government expects them to be competitive and have excellent human resource practices. They were inspired to be talent attractors or places where “Young India” could learn a lot. As a result, by the time the epidemic hit in 2020, Indian post-secondary institutions had launched upskilling initiatives aimed at creating, acquiring and transferring knowledge, as well as changing behavior to reflect new skills/ know-how and ideas to adapt to the new normal. For this, they could be qualified as “learning organisations”.

Moreover, the pandemic has blurred most socio-cultural boundaries and ensured that global economies are rising to the occasion. The need to hone the PSE sector has never been greater as it plays a vital role in the recovery of global economies. Today, there is no place to get bogged down or fall behind in the industry, and it has become extremely important to re-skill employees in digital and business best practices.

Changing Mindset: ESPs Adapting to New Realities

The government is partnering with many EdTech providers to change the nation’s talent story. Although a starter, the pace is increasingly enabling the PES workforce to fill the skills gap in areas such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, data analytics, cloud computing and other new era technologies. Going forward, we need to digitize our electric utilities and, most importantly, train and develop our staff to manage the new systems in order to be truly competitive on the global stage.

India’s energy assets have unquestionably moved development in the right direction. All it takes now is a boost in digital momentum. This becomes all the more important in the current scenario as the Telecom Sector Skills Council (TSSC) claims that India would need about 22 million people to qualify or upgrade by 2025 in order to meet industry demand, given the promising deployment of 5G planned by the government in 2025. the Union budget 2022-23.

Changing sector: what can the training of digital executives focus on?

According to a NASSCOM survey, more than half of today’s PSE workforce will need to upgrade their skills in order to keep up with changing industry dynamics. The goal of digital executive education is to provide working executives with the information and advanced skills they need to succeed. After establishing an agile working environment, it is necessary to define the digital talents and capabilities that will enable public companies to drive data maturity.

The public sector can therefore engage in a comprehensive strategy that includes digital user skills, socio-emotional skills, professional skills and leadership skills to enable e-government maturity. Public sector human resources must adapt and adopt new ways of recruiting and retaining staff, as well as providing career paths that support both a formal and informal learning culture. This creates a feedback loop between the environment that shapes organizational culture and the techniques used to provide a pathway to a future-ready workforce.

Online executive training for ESPs should focus on building diverse, multi-disciplinary teams comprised of well-trained digital and non-digital professionals who reflect a mix of socio-emotional skills and behaviors to design and deliver services reliable and proactive who are attentive to the needs of users. Some ESPs have created a hybrid training mode that incorporates multiple aspects of digital learning. The aim is to make needs-based learning inputs more accessible, in line with the contemporary trend of ‘tailor-made’ learning and development. Cutting-edge technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality can help junior and mid-level staff learn faster.

Additionally, as the training culture of most Indian ESPs is “hands-on”, digital execution education should focus on simulation-based learning that can help the workforce acquire knowledge. and practical skills. Skills acquisition and role readiness are important factors today and deploying such tools for executive education and on-the-job training can bring surprising benefits to both the workforce work and businesses.

Transform into a change management initiative

While digital diversity was initially seen as a barrier, most Indian ESPs have embraced it as a “change management initiative”; That implies –

  • Focus on instilling the correct mindset and acceptance of digital learning within the workforce
  • Examine and determine the capabilities that will be needed in the future, focused on the best digital ways to transmit talent
  • Link capabilities to personal development goals to ensure individual accountability
  • Focus on digital data and behavioral skills that will prepare employees for the future

Learners are becoming increasingly responsible for their own education, and there is a growing emphasis on knowledge management and blended learning. This helps PES climb the ladder of success at an unprecedented rate, laying the foundation for a growing country.

The author is president, upGrad for Business. Views are personal.

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