We are in the midst of a Skills Revolution. Technology is transforming organizations, skills needs are changing rapidly and we know companies cannot find the talent they need. People with in-demand skills who can continually learn and adapt can call the shots. Those with ubiquitous skills see wages stagnating and insecurity ahead, playing out in politics, protectionism and populism.
We also know that digitization and automation is happening at different speeds impacting regions, sectors and organizations at different times in different ways. In the past, transformation took decades, even centuries. Today, it is happening at an unprecedented pace, yet the outcome is not predetermined. Human ingenuity and preference will be the lynch pin for how we leverage technology in our lives and businesses. And in all future scenarios, helping people to upskill in this fast-changing world of work will be what ensures their employability and it must also happen at speed and at scale. Skills and access to employment will be the solution to the Skills Revolution.
We must identify skills adjacencies that create clear career paths from education to employment, from this job to that job. We need accelerated reskilling programs with faster, shorter bursts of on-the-job, experiential training. And we must shift more people from declining industries to growth sectors: textile workers to composite materials technicians, coal miners to coders.1
We need to help people think differently too. In this digital world success will not always require a college degree, but will rely heavily on the appetite for continuous skills development. We must nurture people’s curiosity and learnability so they have the desire and ability to continuously develop their skills to stay employable. With the right skills mix, people will augment rather than compete with technology. And as leaders, helping people upskill and future-proof themselves will be the defining challenge of our time. Identifying in-demand skills and providing access to employment will be the solution to the Skills Revolution.
Jonas Prising, Chairman & CEO, ManpowerGroup
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