The world we live in is ever evolving. The latest industrial revolution is driven by digital transformation. From information communication technologies, social networks to artificial intelligence and augmented reality innovations. We live in a state of flux. And while many companies across the world are rapidly adopting new digital technologies, employees constantly need to adapt to new ways of working.

Research has shown that in the last couple of years companies have spent billions, if not trillions of US dollars on technology investments, yet productivity did not improve drastically. In fact, costs escalated with little or no returns. The reason could be that employees are either unable or unwilling to interact with and utilise technology. As a result,  companies now look for people who can interact and interplay with digital technology to improve their business strategy and optimise ROI on technology spend. Essentially, upskilling is no longer just a technical training expense but an investment for the future.

Why is upskilling important?

  • Competence

We live in a time of intricate tools and high-speed technologies. Digital transformation pervades every sector of employment. Improving your digital literacy will make you competent to address new challenges.

  • Employability

Adaptability and agility is key. More companies are requiring assessments for digital readiness when recruiting. You may become irrelevant if you refuse to embrace technology.

  • Future workplace

As the world evolves and tools of trade become more complex, the demand for high performance will continuously escalate. You need to be future fit to comfortably navigate this demanding landscape. 

  • Growth opportunities

The world of work is an open market; new developments are always on the horizon; companies constantly need cutting-edge talent to take advantage of opportunities and personal development is a key driver for both employee satisfaction and career advancement.

Against this background, upskilling is not a choice but a must:

  1. Sharpen the skills you already possess. Both ‘soft’ skills and ‘hard’ skills; the soft skills have to do with your behaviour and character, the hard skills are acquired technical competencies.
  2. Actively expand your knowledge. This could mean learning about innovation in hydraulic technology if you are in the manufacturing sector or new design software if you are in the arts.
  3. Be open-minded, practice being agile by constantly considering new and innovative ideas. Do something out of your comfort zone regularly – this flexes the brain and keeps you young!

A sustainable career depends on constant upskilling. It should be a way of life.