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HR challenge! Justifying expenditure on reskilling employees

Skillsoft India managing director Kamal Dutta said the challenge comes from not knowing what to measure though organisations have a lot of data

Vidya S | April 12, 2021 | Updated 14:07 IST
HR challenge! Justifying expenditure on reskilling employees

While skilling, reskilling and upskilling have assumed a greater significance for professionals in the past year, organisations find it a big challenge to justify investing in their employees' skilling, according to a study by corporate e-learning solutions provider Skillsoft India.

The study conducted in December 2020 surveyed chief human resource officers, chief learning officer, human resource heads and HR directors of more than 200 companies, including Tata Motors, Dr Reddy's Laboratories and Welspun Group among several other listed entities.

While 82% of the surveyed businesses said building skills and capabilities required for the future was one of their top learning and development priorities, 63% also said demonstrating Return on Investment (RoI) on those learning interventions was a priority, according to 'Learning Trends India 2020'.

Also read: IT skills in top demand! Jobs aplenty for professionals with these expertise

"The biggest challenge on learning and development that companies have is in showing to their leadership or management the value of skilling or upskilling they are providing to the employees," Skillsoft India managing director Kamal Dutta told BusinessToday.In. The India wing of the American headquartered company counts TAFE, HCL tech, ITC Infotech among its more than 200 enterprise customers in India.

Dutta said the challenge comes from not knowing what to measure though organisations have a lot of data. "Many organisations are not sure which Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and metrics to measure. This has to be defined in order to establish ROI such as improvement in efficiency, productivity, revenue growth etc. Ultimately, businesses have to benefit from the investments made and, therefore, need to establish those parameters that show value."

Further, the study showed that 49% of respondents pointed towards a lack of interest among employees as another critical challenge in investing in their skilling.  

Also read: COVID-19 hit women, youth, lower-skilled workers harder: IMF

He attributed this to the nature of the content available, saying that a Netflix-isation of learning tools with richer material, immersive content, customisation, curated options, easier search facility etc, would help employees take to them more easily.

Dutta also said Skillsoft saw maximum demand for the technology & development vertical of their learning resources, with most takers opting for courses in artificial intelligence, machine learning, cloud computing and data sciences.

Also read: Hiring activity picks up pace; IT sector leads the pack

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