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As technology evolves, so should our skills

By LLamasoft Editorial Team  February 24, 2020

By Ryan Hicks, Director of Learning Experience at LLamasoft

The skills required to deliver business value are shifting with technology and time. Development of those skills must reflect a similar shift in technology and your learning and development philosophy will not escape the IoT, mobile technology, machine learning (ML), artificial and augmented intelligence (AI) and other emerging tech trends without sacrificing a competitive advantage. Skills are in demand which means learning opportunities should be in supply. The organization which can provide the right learning to the right person at the right place and time has a strategic competitive advantage.

Learning opportunities and performance support take many shapes. You’re likely familiar with classroom training and e-learning. Perhaps you’ve employed a coaching model to support performance in your organization. Maybe you belong to an organization which creates additional opportunities through professional associations or outside mentors. While there is no one-size-fits-all skills development approach, the tracking and measurement of different learning opportunities provides a baseline against which skills development can be measured. You can measure the economic value of different learning products and programs and make smarter decisions about what is right for you.

Let’s consider the value of assessments in the skills economy. If skills are the goods and services then assessments become the measurement of the flow of those goods and services. Skills assessments are fueling the matchmaking algorithms of successful professional networks and allowing for established talent to meet demand signals. Those same skills assessments can document the achievement of new skills (think professional certifications and credentials) which in turn can enhance the value achieved from existing talent. You can stop thinking of assessments as necessary pains and consider them barometers of potential value.

Now that we’re measuring the skills economy, we must evaluate its ability to move those goods and services. Here we find there’s a dance between the investment in new skills and the ability of the economy to meet that demand. The most valuable learning experience produces new skills with smallest investment of time for the learner but humans require time to learn and that is a non-renewable resource in any economy. So, what’s to be done? Investment in digital time-of-need learning solutions and performance support must be considered. Augment and reinforce experiential learning through professional coaching engagements that are tailored to your needs.

Emerging tech trends are leading indicators of demand in the skills economy. There is significant value in taking a pulse on your organization’s position and an equal or greater risk in ignoring that position. Design a solution that fits your needs, measure the performance and observe the increase in value and worth. Welcome to the skills economy!