Beyond Buzzwords:
    Rethinking Upskilling and Reskilling Strategy to Deliver ROI

    This factsheet highlights the difference between conventional and comprehensive upskilling and reskilling approaches. Learn how strategic initiatives not only boost employee performance and engagement but also future-proof the workforce, yielding substantial ROI.
    calendar-plus-01 May 7, 2024
    user-circle Credly Team
    Learning and Development manager analyzing credential analytics for return on investment

    With 1.1 billion global jobs likely to be transformed by technology in the next decade, upskilling and reskilling have become critical for any organization that wants to be competitive.

    According to McKinesy, upskilling refers to when a person is building a higher level of competency in a skill or set of skills to better perform in the current role, while reskilling means when a person is building a different skill or set of skills to be able to perform in a different or significantly evolving role.

    This factsheet illustrates the contrast between a conventional upskilling and reskilling strategy and a comprehensive approach supported by data and digital credentials. By highlighting both limitations and advantages, organizations can reassess the significance of upskilling and reskilling initiatives.

    The Baseline: A Basic Upskilling & Reskilling Approach

    A basic upskilling and reskilling strategy relies on subjective upskilling decisions to offer generalized training. Does your organization’s approach look like this?
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    Select skills to develop

    Subjective upskilling decisions are made based on employee self-assessment or other subjective data.

    Offer training programs

    Provide training for all employees or for certain roles. Use employee feedback to optimize.
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    Collect basic data

    Analyze training outcomes using data such as completion rates, average scores, engagement and satisfaction.

    Drawbacks of the Basic Approach

    While a basic strategy may be better than none, this approach can lead to poor outcomes in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

    1. Employee Disengagement
      Mandatory training programs can leave workers frustrated by training for skills they don’t need or already possess.

    2. Misaligned Training
      Programs based on self-assessment don’t always align with organizational objectives; employees may prioritize individual career goals.

    3. Reduced ROI
      The lack of a skill gap analysis can lead to training investments that produce a skills misalignment with business needs.

    4. Imprecise Measurement
      Without a data-driven training strategy, L&D teams may struggle to demonstrate business outcomes and ROI. 

    How to Upgrade Your Upskilling & Reskilling Strategy

    Future-proofing the workforce requires a data-driven approach, using digital credentials for skills validation.

    STEP 1

    Define Clear Objectives

    Determine what skills are critical for workforce development based on the company’s business strategy and changes in the marketplace. Focus on both technical skills and so-called “soft skills,” which are becoming more critical.

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    STEP 2 

    Perform a Skill Gap Analysis  

    Conduct a data-backed analysis of the organization’s strategic goals, industry trends and anticipated changes in the business landscape. A skills gap analysis identifies where employees need skills enhancement or new skills altogether. 

    Pictogram-RGB-Coral Pink_Performance

    STEP 3

    Develop Targeted Programs

    Design workforce development programs tailored to individual and business needs. Use skill gaps to identify critical needs in employee skill growth. Personalized learning pathways increase employee engagement and provide insights into individual and workforce-wide capabilities.

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    STEP 4

    Introduce Digital Credentials

    Implement a digital credentialing program to verify and recognize skills. Digital badges can provide rich data to measure progress against skills gaps and develop tailored training programs that align with employee and organizational objectives.

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    STEP 5

    Use Data-driven Performance Metrics

    Analytics provide insights on how upskilling and reskilling affect employee performance and contribute to organizational success. 

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    Benefits of a Robust Upskill & Reskill Strategy

    Strategic upskilling programs drive productivity gains, foster talent retention, promote innovation and increase profits.

    1. Enhancing Employee Performance
      Organizations are prioritizing upskilling for its demonstrable benefits. According to a global survey by PwC, 93% of CEOs whose organizations introduced upskilling programs reported notable productivity gains.

    2. Increasing Employee Engagement
      Training opportunities boost employee satisfaction and retention. A recent survey reveals that 35% of HR leaders prioritize training and development to enhance organizational culture.

    3. Future-proofing Your Workforce
      A transformational shift in work, driven by technology, requires a corresponding shift in employee skills. According to the World Economic Forum, 60% of workers will require additional training before 2027.

    4. Demonstrating Substantial ROI
      Strategic upskilling programs are a worthy investment. Gallup research indicates that organizations strategically investing in employee development gain an 11% profit boost.

    Explore more positive business outcomes experienced by Credly customers who have effectively implemented digital credentials.


    Effective Strategies Require Powerful Tools

    Accurate data is essential for informed decision-making and demonstrating ROI in building a comprehensive upskilling strategy. A digital credentials platform like Credly Acclaim plays a crucial role. Download our whitepaper 'Strategies for Overcoming Challenges in Employee Upskilling and Reskilling' to learn how verified digital credentials can prepare your organization for the next era of business.

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