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Employers re-skill for cloud rather than lose staff

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As employers turn to training and skills to tackle retention, creativity is needed when thinking about what to offer.

Speaking on a panel at The Economist Innovation@Work Global Week, Bank of Ireland chief people officer Matt Elliott shared how his organisation is responding to employees’ needs.

He said: “We’re certainly pining to help employees with their careers. I don’t want to have them leave, and I don’t want people to think they have to leave.

“Rather than just letting people go when we no longer need their contributions in a physical environment, we’re looking to completely re-skill into digital and cloud based skills.”


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The discussion followed LinkedIn findings that this week found two-fifths (41%) of UK companies will implement large-scale upskilling or re-skilling programmes to retain top talent and address skills shortages.

On the Economist panel Pawel Adrjan, head of research for EMEA at Indeed, noted: “In the search for jobs, people are increasingly searching for jobs that offer training."

However, Adrjan said the growth in virtual training may affect its uptake.

“In this hybrid virtual world it will be interesting to see if you can train younger people or new employees as effectively as before," he said.

“Maybe training isn’t as effective as it was in person but it’s definitely becoming more important.”

Speaking to HR magazine Tom Holliss, chief people officer of market researcher Zappi, added that collaboration has been the focus of his company's L&D activity.

“Collaborative innovations are where we’ve tried to focus quite a lot,” he said.

“Skills around design, around service design, skills around discovery and ideation of how we can use technologies, and also thinking processes.

“We’ve invested quite a lot in that so it’s been a matter of finding people in the organisation who are interested in getting involved and helping people work through challenges in their projects. All in addition to offering people training they could do in their own time.”