Re… what? Reskilling: it’s one of the concepts that will be much talked about in the coming decades, and it’s not a modern invention, quite the contrary!

Imagine you are a spinner in the 18th century, working at home to earn some money, with your spinning wheel and your threads… until one day your boss tells you that he has bought a new machine, with the latest technology: steam.

From now on, you work in the factory, and in assembly lines.

Bam! The industrial revolution has caught up with you. And, like it or not, you have to learn new skills.

BAD Reskilling. (Vía Giphy)
Technological changes always mean a rethinking of the job market. Some jobs disappear, others change and new ones are created.

It is true that in many cases resistance to change arises. We doubt, for example, that ice sellers would be very happy about the marketing of domestic refrigerators…

But, as we see it from Zapiens, reskilling has many more advantages than disadvantages.

Shall we tell you all about it?

What is reskilling?

Reskilling is the ability to learn new job skills, usually under the premises of continuous training.
In other words, what we’ve always referred to as professional retraining.

And, as you can see, the history of reskilling goes way back in time. So why is there so much talk about it lately?

Because we are immersed in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which has a lot to do with connectivity, the internet of things, Artificial Intelligence, robotics and, in general, with digitization and the development of new technologies.

This leads to the fact that the labor market is changing very, very fast, and profiles that do not yet exist are needed.

And in addition, companies have problems finding qualified people for certain specific positions. Do you see the opportunity there ahí?

In return, there are a lot of unskilled profiles that run the risk of being left out of the market… unless they are retrained.

According to the World Economic Forum, 25% of workers in the United States may lose their current job.

What do we do with all these people? Shouldn’t we be thinking of a way for them to readapt to the labor market?

Well, that’s where reskillling comes in.

What is reskilling for: 3 benefits that you can enjoy now

To a greater or lesser extent, 2020 has been a reskilling experience for everyone.

Or did you already know in 2019 what types of face masks were on the market and how to put them on so they don’t fog up your glasses?

(Well, actually it seems that the latter hasn’t been invented yet, but we can’t wait).

Don’t forget to wear a face mask. (Via Giphy)
If we go to work, almost everyone has had to adapt to teleworking methods, and for that, new skills have had to be learned, ranging from home organization (first lesson: don’t work in your pajamas) to the tools needed to work remotely.

The most adaptable companies have withstood the challenge better… but it would be much better not to wait for an emergency to roll up our sleeves, don’t you think?

Among others, if you start working on reskilling, you can get these three things out of it:

1. Personal reinvention: you change, your job changes.

Before, the job market was much more stable. You started from scratch in a job and, with effort and time, you could work your way up.

What was normal then? Retire in the company where you started.

This is increasingly atypical. And resumes with one or more turning points are not uncommon:

  • Journalists who jump into publishing novels…
  • Engineers retrained in digital marketing…
  • Entrepreneurial women seeking to reconcile family life…

Each of these profiles has moments in which the person has had to reinvent him or herself (by obligation or by taste) and pivot his or her work specialty.

Reskilling here is seen as a way to adapt to the market, but not only that: it is also an opportunity to find your vocation, what you really like, and not to settle for a standard job.

Thanks to reskilling, we are all “juniors” in our work, because we know that reinvention can happen again.

Hence the importance of continuous training.

How do you approach reskilling in these situations? You are totally free to punch the table and make a 180° turn, of course.

But perhaps the easiest thing to do is to build on some of the skills you already have and give them a twist. Have you heard of Ikigai?

Thanks to reskilling, we’re all a bit junior in our work.

2. Internal recruitment.

If you are responsible for Human Resources in your company, you know very well that hiring new profiles is, to say the least, a challenge.

Recruitment processes are becoming longer, more complicated and more expensive, it must be said.

And, no matter how fine-tuned they are, you always have the doubt of whether you are getting it right when hiring that person… if not, in a few months you’ll be back to square one (how awful!).

Maybe the answer you were looking for is right under your nose: someone who knows the company, is familiar with its work rhythms, needs and peculiarities, and who only needs to recycle his or her knowledge.

In other words, if you need a certain profile, why not look for it first in company?

Have you watched the movie Hidden Figures?

One of the stories told is that of Dorothy Johnson Vaugham. She worked at the old NASA and was one of the mathematicians who did the calculations by hand. By hand, huh? With pencil and paper.

The thing is, you were starting to see big computers and this woman saw that this was the future. What did she do? Learn to program on her own, and then train her colleagues.

Take note: women, and black women. In other circumstances and unfortunately, they would have been fired in the first downsizing. And they were the ones who ended up teaching programming to NASA engineers.

Here is the great moment:

There you have good quality reskilling.

In this spectacular case, reskilling comes from the person him/herself. If from Human Resources you are able to promote this proactivity among the staff, many of your problems will be solved before they appear.

3. Uncovering hidden talent: a case study.

Here comes another story. It’s not from a movie, but it is a REAL story.

Anna hired Marc as an administrative assistant. And everything went very well. Marc is a serious and competent guy, who adapted well to the work system.

One day Marc said to Anna: hey, your Trello is a bit messy, can you let me try to organize it? And sure enough, he left it looking great.

So Anna had a revelation: she thought she had an assistant, and in reality she had hired a project manager. She got Marc some training to bring him up to speed, and now his job is to coordinate different teams to move projects forward.

Now think: What do you know about your staff, and are you really taking advantage of all the people’s capabilities?

We go back to the previous point: you might be looking outside for what you already have at home.

How to work on reskilling

Here’s where “spamming” comes in: with, of course! (It was easy to guess, wasn’t it?)

But we’re not the only ones who say so, for the record. We have also been recognized by the Santander X Tomorrow Challenge Award that we won, precisely, in the Reskilling category.

Well, what you really need is a knowledge management tool that allows you to do these three things:

1. Identify the training needs of your business.

This has a lot to do with sensing where things are going, both in your specific sector and in the market in general.

And we know it’s not easy: think that, according to reports like this one, 85% of the jobs of the future (taking 2030 as a reference year), haven’t even been invented yet!

In case you need ideas, here’s a list of the most in-demand skills for the coming years, according to the World Economic Forum:

  • Analytical thinking and innovation.
  • Active learning.
  • Creativity, originality and initiative.
  • Technology design and programming.
  • Critical thinking and analysis.
  • Complex problem solving.
  • Leadership and social influence.
  • Emotional intelligence.
  • Systems analysis and evaluation.

Once the skills to be enhanced have been decided, the next step would be to evaluate the level of the people in your company: their strengths and -almost more important- their deficiencies, in order to work on them. has what we call Knowledge Dashboards, which allow you to get general and individual statistics with concrete data on the evolution of learning, and draw conclusions for your training strategies.

In other words, knowledge made tangible by using numbers.

Data: the spice of life (vía Giphy)
This helps you to implement a reskilling (or upskilling) strategy, but not only that: also to review it periodically to check the results.

With our Knowledge Dashboards, you always have an overview of how knowledge is growing and improving in your company.

2. Implement a continuous training system.

If possible online, of course. And in a way that does not interfere in daily work. works with micro-trainings: trainings based on questions and answers, in which you learn a little bit every day, from your pc or mobile phone.

In addition, we have gamified it, with a series of achievements and rewards so that people challenge each other (but healthy competition, eh?) and participate more willingly.

3. Design your own trainings.

You can buy a course or hire a teacher for specific subjects, but in certain topics you will be interested in contributing your own knowledge and experience.

Or even better: take advantage of the expertise of the people in your organization and have them teach each other.

With you have access to the content creator so that you can create your own trainings in a very simple way.

Do you find it interesting? You can always ask for a free trial to see how it fits like a glove to your company’s training needs.

Do you already know how to work with reskilling in your company?

Think about one thing: if you manage to implement a continuous training culture in your company, it will be much easier for you to adapt and pivot when necessary.

And you will also have a motivated workforce eager to learn new things.

We know for sure: knowledge is a vice! How can we not be fans of reskilling?

Request your FREE Demo now.

With all the brains in your organization connected, your team will be more productive than ever.