Employee Skills Gap – Defined
Organizations are set up to fulfill objectives, and when they hire employees, it is done with the mindset of having people to work on fulfilling the said company objectives. Hence, people with the correct skill sets are recruited. However, often it happens that employees lack certain knowledge & training which creates a skill gap. Because of this the employee is unable to perform as expected.
Skill Gap can simply be defined as the difference in the skills required and the actual skills possessed by the employee(s) on the job. Skill gap assessment presents an opportunity for the company and employees alike the opportunity to identify the missing skills and try to gain them. As an organization evolves, its employees are also expected to evolve by learning new skills, developing old skills, and learning to be proficient in all areas across the board.
There are some telltale signs that your organization is facing a skills gap. These range from a mismatch between the organization’s needs and the capabilities of the workforce, a high percentage of Baby Boomers in your organization that are soon to retire, or a growing number of high skilled, specialized jobs needed to take the organization forward
For employees; Workplace efficiency could mean combining two jobs/duties/tasks into one, even if you currently lack a certain skill, it will drive you to stay on top, in our changing world, and you are also able to test your skills which ultimately allows you to see where you stand in reference to specific skill sets.
Essentially, when addressing your skills gap, your first step is knowing where you are skill-wise, work out what you are good at, where you are lacking, examine the skills required for your job roles, then do a self-assessment against the criteria. Be honest with yourself. What are you good at, and what are you not so good at.
Luckily, you’ve got many tools online to help with this. Examples are Interpersonal, leadership and even emotional skills assessments tools, to assess areas of weakness and strength, Leadership skills questionnaires help you find out what sort of leader you are, and where you could benefit from further development.
Once you’ve determined the gaps, you must accept that there is no substitute for experience. If you can’t persuade your team mates or immediate team leader to teach you on how to do better, then you can also go online to learn it from the vast information from different works of life that’s available. You may need to do some unpaid or voluntary work for a while, as this also puts you in a sort or practical mode. Personally, I suggest “that while you learn from interning and your team/leader, you should always back it up with online research, as you can never go wrong with enough information from experts’ experiences.”
Conclusively, you must also put serious though on application of the new things you have learnt. Always have another plan to fall back on, if an idea does not work. This goes on to show your employer that you mean business.
For employers; for the sake of remaining competitive, businesses typically need to maintain a skilled work force. Assessing the critical skills needed by an organization allows the company to ensure current and future employees possess the right skills to enable optimal performance. Identify the procedures and processes in place as well as the types of personnel required to carry out the organizations activities
Create a skills inventory to list the skills and knowledge to perform each role in the organization, observe people completing the work to validate your assumptions. Rate personnel as entry level, master level or expert level. Compare the outcomes of experts with the outcomes of less experienced personnel to identify the tactics used by skilled professionals. This helps determine what training needs to be implemented to improve the success rate for less seasoned employees.
After analyzing the gap between the current performance and the desired performance levels, effective training is the next thing you want to make sure is done and the only way to achieve this is by getting professionals to do so. Once the skill gap is known and communicated to trainer, they will come up with the appropriate design, they will then create, deliver and evaluate interventions that enable employees to develop both professionally and personally to achieve the desired state. This brings about an improved employee morale, retention and business performance.