According to Kishore GR, Senior VP & Head HR for DXC Channel, Mphasis, organizations must create different learning platforms. Read on for his insights on why upskilling is a necessity in this tech-driven era.
What are the strategies you employ to upskill your workforce?
Skill upliftment is a necessity for existence and no more a ‘good to have’ – once this message becomes the norm, acceptance will be easier. Investment in the said 3 tracks will help reach there:
- Creation: Organizations must create different learning platforms, classroom training, virtual training, access to digitally enabled content, real time curation of content, mock projects, design simulated environments for the workforce to participate /experiment with their learning and set up skill communities for the exchange of learnings.
- Engage: Introduce policies/practices that encourage a learning environment that plays a vital role. Some of the key polices being (i) compensation structures, variable pay & salary increases should be looked at through a different lens (ii) performance evaluation practices should consider that individuals are getting into unknown terrains (iii) coaching on how to handle current assignments while transitioning to newer skills/projects to the workforce will enable minimal disruption to the business and individuals. Finally, equipping leaders with the right tools/frame works to help the workforce acclimatise themselves in the newer environment/skills which will go a long way in the upskilling journey.
- Demonstrate: It is essential that the senior leadership demonstrates the advantages of upskilling with real examples – highlighting the success stories of individuals, sharing the impact of upskilling in the organization’s growth, individual growth and career advancement opportunities for employees will influence the learning quotient across the organisation.
How do you win at talent management?
There is no one prescribed format or secret sauce. Agility, adaptability and helping your stakeholders in predicting demand is one of the approaches to win talent management.
Gaining accuracy on forecasts will enable enterprises to ‘build and buy’ their talent; this will ensure the right person for the right job. Organisations can start building the talent through up-skilling, re-skilling, coaching and mentoring programs to meet the forecast and evaluate what should be bought from the market/competition. The internal workforce will have a better cultural acclimatisation and new talent can bring in newer practices from the market. The combination of the internal workforce embedded with the external one will enable maximum productivity to organisations and the highest engagement with the workforce.
What are the steps you take as a leader to embrace innovative disruption?
It is important to recognize the disruption that would be applicable to your organization. Preparation and continuous assessment is critical. Alternatively, you could also lead the disruption and be the architect of one.
Knowing about disruption is very important. There is a lot of talk around ‘digital’ just because the word used is widely across industry which doesn’t necessarily mean one should start adopting all the disruptions. Firstly, understand what is Digital? What is the disruption? When you say you are a digital company, what does it really mean? For different companies, digital means differently, an IT company’s lens on digital will be very different from that of a manufacturing company.
Once understood, then identify how you can use the disruption. Try and imbibe them into your current working models, evaluate the benefits versus the investment. Detailing the benefits to stakeholders, employees and shareholders. If you get the inter-linkages and are convinced, spend time to communicate the relevance both internally and externally so that it can be embraced.
To sum up, I would say that if the disruptions are relevant: a) Learn about the disruptions b) Identify opportunities to use them c) Imbibe them into the current working models d) Communicate the relevance of the disruption to internal and external stakeholders.
What role do you think culture plays in increasing efficiency at work?
Organizational culture plays a critical role in increasing efficiency, they both go hand in hand. A culture which fosters innovation can help lead disruption in the market place. A culture which does not, can get penalized for failure by not allowing for risk taking behaviours by its workforce. Culture is an overall wrap and the saying ‘culture can eat strategy for breakfast’ is apt.
What role do you think technology plays in talent management? How can technology bring about a change in the talent management lifecycle?
Adapting technology in talent management is a boon for the current crop of leaders. The entire cycle can be redefined and personalized, help with cost reduction, increase efficiency and transform current practices. With organizations being more data driven, the insights and conversations are moving from the standard metrics of talent management to having a deeper understanding of obtaining better talent, retaining top talent and helping with long term strategic planning.