Upskilling in Asia Pacific – By prioritising external talent over upskilling, many are missing out on potential benefits

Learning and development is seen as vital, but its quality must improve

Learning and development (L&D) is an essential part of any job, with 70% of surveyed employees based in APAC seeing opportunities for L&D as important when considering a new job role. L&D can offer an array of benefits to employees and teams – improved performance, improved satisfaction/morale and improved productivity to name a few. This can only have a positive impact on ROI and staff retention.

Encouragingly, four in five (80%) APAC employees say they received L&D from their organisation in 2018. In fact, employees report they received L&D three times last year, on average. However, is this enough?

And are employees happy with the quality of the L&D they received? The answer is no. More than eight in ten (85%) employees wish they received more L&D from their organisation for new skills in 2018. In addition, only 14% of employees rated the L&D that they received as excellent, where nothing could have been improved. This leaves the vast majority (86%) feeling their organisation could have done more to provide effective L&D. This is likely to contribute to the 48 percent of employees who admit their team is under-skilled to deliver what is needed for the business.

Not only do organisations need to offer more L&D, they must deliver it to a much higher standard, otherwise skillsets will stagnate.

By prioritising external talent over upskilling, many are missing out on potential benefits

We’ve already seen organisations are failing to successfully upskill employees in their current roles. But, in addition, upskilling employees for new roles isn’t done well either. Nine in ten (90%) employees report that when a new role needs to be filled in their organisation, external employees are considered for hire, as opposed to appropriate internal employees being upskilled, with 40 percent citing roles are lled with external employees all or most of the time.

Upskilling employees for new roles bring a whole host of benefits to organisations. The initial investment is less, while the level of retention, morale, productivity, performance and career mobility can be more.

Unfortunately, many are missing out on these perks. To not miss out, organisations need to put a robust learning and development plan, as well as a talent management strategy in place.

Employees want more learning and development, but fear their organisation won’t deliver it

Over three quarters (77%) of surveyed APAC employees admit they need to learn a new skill in 2019 in order to remain con dent in their role. However, 69 percent of employees are concerned about not receiving the L&D they need from their organisation in order to remain employable and skilled in the future.

With so many organisations failing to deliver enough L&D, and to the high standard that is needed, the chances of employes learning a new skill are slim. This places a huge question mark over whether employees have con dence in the role they fill. The end result could leave employees feeling unsupported and unskilled,which will only push them to seek other opportunities elsewhere.

Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Mind the gap: upskilling Asia Pacific employees for the digital workplace

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