If the digital transformation skills gap is not addressed and plans are not put in place in order to take the necessary steps in the right direction to mitigate the effects of the digital divide, this will have dire consequences not only for organisations but for economic growth alike. In order to foster a successful digital transformation, it is of utmost importance to prepare for the coming skill shifts that are required in the digital era.
Given the complexity of implementing new technologies, organisations will need the right people who can design the new algorithms and interpret the data in order for the digital transformation to be a success. There’s no point in having access to all this new data without the proper resources to usher in a new way of doing business. To achieve the success that digital transformation can bring, resources and infrastructures are necessary; but the main enabler is people.
The importance of skill development
The lack of specialist skills in the workforce is preventing organisations from undergoing digital transformation and thus hindering their success. In a world that has completely changed the way we do business over the last few years, and with no sign of innovation coming to an end, having the right resources for digital transformation is imperative to your organisation so as to not fall too far behind and become obsolete.
To become more resilient and sustainable in the face of the digital age, it is important to improve and build upon the way people work and to constantly reevaluate the skills needed in the current workplace. This will ensure both your organisation and workforce are able to take advantage of the latest technology as soon as they are available. By keeping ahead of the curve, you’ll be able to mitigate any negative effects that arise when old technology becomes obsolete.
Sustaining digital transformation goes hand in hand with upskilling and reskilling the workforce, as they are the ones at the forefront of the digital revolution. Empowering people to work in new ways and providing the right tools to leverage innovation is the only way to move forward in the world we currently live in.
How to promote skill development for digital transformation
The need for digital skills training and upskilling is gaining importance by the day. Not just for organisations but for individuals too, and lifelong learning is necessary to ensure that both individuals and the workforce can adapt to the new digital environment. Organisations need to help close the digital gap by ensuring that their employees have access to upskilling programs that will give them the skills they require to be a success.
The need to upskill, and reskill where necessary, the nation's workforce has never been more urgent. With a fourth industrial revolution well on its way, the age of digital transformation is here and here to stay, and organisations are needed to upskill their employees in order to drive productivity, innovation and growth within their businesses and to stay up to date with the ever-changing systems and technologies. In order to do this, organisations need to anticipate the right skills needed for the future, instil a hunger for knowledge culture within their employees to constantly adapt and upskill and deliver modern upskilling programmes which will not only benefit employees but the organisation too.
Developing and upskilling the workforce's talent and skills throughout the organisation is a fundamental action for the success of digital transformation within organisations and for the future growth and sustainability of the organisation. Without a reduction in the digital divide in the workforce, there won’t be a sustainable digital transformation in the workforce which could lead to dire consequences for both organisations and economic growth alike.
Organisations need to treat upskilling and education as a top priority in order to foster an ever-learning environment in the workplace. This is important to instil because the digital transformation is ever-changing and ever-evolving, and in order to keep yourself from becoming redundant, constant upskilling and reskilling are needed.
Educate the youth
Invest in the future of digital transformation by investing in the education of the youth of today by incorporating the necessary skills into the current school curriculum. This will also need to be constantly reviewed in order to ensure that the skills being taught are aligned with the current skills needed in the workplace.
Start education from a young age with the necessary digital skills to give future generations the necessary tools they need to excel in the digital world. This is the future of business and in order to create an inclusive economy, everyone, from big business owners to the little mom-and-pop shop owners, has to be able to live, learn, work and actively participate in the digital world.
Instilling a love for learning from a young age will help fast-track the success of digital transformation by giving students the opportunity to enter the workforce with a base of knowledge that is applicable to the current workplace. This will help the future workforce, organisations, as well as the economy, as an appropriately educated workforce is an asset to every country.
Invest in physical and digital infrastructure
To promote a successful digital transformation, developing physical and digital infrastructures in a country is an absolute must! This is because, without the proper infrastructure in place, access to advanced technology is hindered because of this. As a result, access to mobile phones and internet use remains low, especially in underprivileged areas. Without the right infrastructures in place, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for the digital transformation to be a success.
In many underdeveloped countries, access to advanced technology is restricted by the lack of infrastructures which provide the needed resources to be able to not only get but benefit from advanced technology. The spread of digital technologies in these areas can empower the poor by giving them quick access to information, more job opportunities, and services that improve their standard of living. By working together with trusted and accredited development finance institutions such as DBSA, we can work together to bring forth a brighter, more inclusive future for all.
From both an individual and business perspective, it’s imperative that you are constantly learning in order to keep up with the times. In an ever-changing and fast-paced world, the need for upskilling the workforce on a regular basis is the new way of business. By investing in your employees, you not only help your business on the way to its success but also ensure that you are not made redundant with the latest technologies on offer.