Recent occurrences have resulted in many workers being unable to physically present themselves in an office setting. Yet, telecommuting has proven to be an effective solution for many organizations, in response to the difficulties caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Remote working will almost certainly remain a prominent method of business, even after the virus is long gone.
If you are contemplating whether telecommuting is a strategy your business should consider, we recommend referring to our recent article discussing how the coronavirus is accelerating a shift in trends in how we work, with an emphasis on remote working. How can you implement telecommuting and make remote working a possibility in your workplace? You will need a great deal of digital upskilling!
Leveraging digital upskilling to navigate the remote work learning curve
The current crisis has caused a sudden change in how employees work.
Although remote work has been utilized for many years, there were initial fears that a rapid shift could subject employees to too much pressure. It turned out that telecommuting worked better than expected, and now many employers are introducing technologies to assist new remote employees with daily operations. The only problem is that many employees are unfamiliar with these new technologies.
Recent data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s adult-skills survey revealed that there is a wide gap in digital skills in the country.
Additional data from a McKinsey Global Survey revealed that, although around 87% of executives experience or expect skill gaps in the workforce, less than 50% have a clear sense of how to address this issue.
According to a recent Peppercomm and Echo survey, 39% of non-managerial employees in the US workforce report not receiving the required training and upskilling to meet modern technological advancements.
Millions of workers across the country have limited digital skills.
Evidence from diverse surveys and expert research on the subject suggests digital advancements may continue to be a problem in a learning workforce. Closing this digital skills gap will be vital to adjusting to the reality of work in a post-pandemic world. How can employers address this issue? Here are some of our top recommendations;
Start with user-friendly digital tools
Most companies were unprepared for the pandemic, and the shift to remote working needed to happen very quickly. Fortunately, most digital tools needed for remote working hardly require extensive formal training to use. Yet, utilization of the best user-friendly remote working tools, such as Zoom, Hangout, and Skype, among others, will help to minimize the learning curve for workers across different age ranges.
Creating a centralized channel of information
Information should be easily accessible to everyone.
Every company should utilize a central channel where workers can easily access FAQs and how-to guides wherever and whenever needed. Easy access to information will help workers to problem-solve on their own, as quickly as possible. This is especially important for workers who may feel embarrassed when speaking about tech-related issues in the presence of their more tech-savvy colleagues.
Develop a comprehensive digital upskilling program
Organizations should also consider developing digital upskilling and retraining programs for employees.
These programs should be comprehensive and robust enough to successfully equip and train employees of all ages and abilities. Companies should leverage communication, collaboration, as well as support and encouragement to help workers learn the digital skills they require to stay engaged and productive as remote workers.
As remote work continues, organizations that emphasize digital upskilling will no doubt see improved employee productivity and engagement levels, compared to businesses that do not. As it turns out, digital upskilling will be critical to not just your business continuity during COVID-19, but also to your organization’s bottom-line and survival in a post-pandemic world.