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TD Magazine Article

The Solution Is Multiskilling

Executives are looking beyond roles and focusing on skilling talent.


Wed Jun 01 2022

The Solution Is Multiskilling

What are executives focused on? For chief information officers and chief technology officers, it's digital transformation. Chief operating officers are zeroed in on finding ways to respond to supply chain disruptions. Chief financial officers are focused on exploring how automation can offset increasing inflation. And as we called out in the May issue of TD, HR leaders are focused on rethinking work and meeting employees' desires.

Whether it's recruiting, engaging and retaining, or upskilling and reskilling, talent management and development executives are concentrating their efforts on solutions that focus directly on people. A recent PwC Pulse Survey queried nearly 100 HR leaders from Fortune 1000 and private companies, as well as other C-suite executives, about business priorities and investment plans.


"HR leaders know that it's people who move business forward," the survey notes. "As \[chief human resource officers\] are increasingly elevated to a seat at the strategy table, other leaders are looking to them to drive this agenda."

Some 61 percent of respondents said they are investing in hiring and retaining talent, and half said their companies plan on using career advancement opportunities to reduce attrition.

Meanwhile, Gartner surveyed more than 500 HR leaders across all major industries to assess priorities and challenges. Fifty-nine percent ranked building critical skills and competencies as number 1. Four in 10 talent leaders said their companies can't develop skills training fast enough to meet evolving skill needs.

"HR leaders are under pressure—intensified by the economic and humanitarian crises—to ensure their workforce has the skills it needs when it needs them," states Gartner in the Top 5 Priorities for HR Leaders in 2022 report.

To respond to the sense of urgency leaders are experiencing, many employers are opting to structure talent management around skills, not roles. The result is a more adaptable workforce. According to Gartner, the formula for building a skills-based organization entails four actions:

  • Share ownership for skills throughout the organization.

  • Gather dynamic skills data.

  • Use skills, not just roles, in talent decisions.

  • Embed skills in talent management processes.

The outcome, Gartner points out, is that talent leaders have the capability to analyze data at the pace skills change and calculate change across the organization. Ultimately, that enables flexible skills solutions and gives stakeholders a consistent view on the state of available and required skills their teams need to meet performance goals.

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June 2022 - TD Magazine

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