The Need for Rapid Reskilling in an Ever-changing Landscape

Kristina Belyea 11 April 2022

When the pandemic struck, it threw businesses worldwide, and entire industries, into disarray. With exposed vulnerabilities now evident, all stakeholders watched the test of a company’s ability to recover and thrive with bated breath. The successful operating methods of the past had to be revisited, from technology and supply chain processes to the way sales calls and meetings were conducted, while keeping the best interests of employees the top priority.

Consider a 5000-person Life Sciences company that required a significant portion of its workers to become remote right away. What would this remote work look like with new emerging technologies, demanding customer expectations, and the rapid flow of information, combined with the challenges of educating an entire workforce remotely? Before the pandemic, companies struggled to find new and innovative ways to engage, upskill, and train their workers. New investments and tools would be required to make this quick transition.

Let’s take a quick look at the Life Sciences landscape:

  • 50% of employees said they were concerned about their career progression in a new virtual world.
  • 59% of organizations admitted they did not have clear insights to understand the readiness of their workforce to meet new demands.
  • A report from Mckinsey states that 87% of executives said they were experiencing skill gaps in the workforce or expected them within a few years.
  • One-third of pharma execs believe the pandemic accelerated digital transformation by five years or more.
  • HCPs requested more digital patient and care education material and digital training to enhance networking.

It appeared to be a prescription for disaster from productivity to employee engagement, human capital uncertainty, and organizational complexity. According to predictions from the International Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), technology will transform more than a third of all jobs worldwide in the next decade. A blended mix of digital transformation ideals of change, strategy, technology, and execution appears to be the prescription to remain and excel as a competitive player in almost any space.

Some organizations were already ahead of the digital transformation curve, making the transition to an online workplace easier. Many who came out on top invested heavily in their online learning and development platforms. Organizational commitment and readiness go hand-in-hand with the software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform approach.

Recently, the American Society for Training and Development reported that organizations with a “complete training program” had 218% higher revenue per employee and 24% higher profit margins in a survey of 2,500 companies. Additionally, retention rates typically rise from 25% to 60% with such a program in place. A robust learning and development system was positively linked to improved satisfaction and profitability, as measured by increased revenue and lower costs. 

Organizations have begun launching tailored learning journeys as part of successful comprehensive training programs to close critical skill gaps and craft a talent strategy that develops employees’ critical digital and cognitive capabilities, social and emotional skills, adaptability and resilience, and cross-training. Launching tailored learning solutions within any organization comes with its challenges, which is why so many companies form strategic partnerships with SaaS education and training platform providers.

Modern learning and development platforms support not only the specific requirements of training in the post-pandemic world but also the changes needed to level up employee performance. This is done through:

  • Focusing on critical skills that drive value.
  • Simply designed and tailored programs that leverage the science of adult learning and behavior change.
  • Using gamification to create immersive experiences while customizing content and delivery to the learner.
  • Offering blended learning journeys that deliver on business priorities.
  • Measuring and building on insight from linked performance and training data.

As the need for rapid reskilling continues, Life Sciences organizations will continue to look to technology providers for innovation in training and development to support their learners in an ever-changing landscape.

Learn more about ACTO’s omnichannel education platform for the Life Sciences industry.

Sources

Davenport , Thomas H. H., and Thomas C. Redman. “Digital Transformation Comes Down to Talent in 4 Key Areas.” HBR, HBR.com, 2020, https://hbr.org/2020/05/digital-transformation-comes-down-to-talent-in-4-key-areas.

“Https://Viseven.com/News/Elearning-for-Pharma-Digital-Transformation-Requires-in-House-Talents.” VISEVEN, VISEVEN.com., 2021, https://viseven.com/news/elearning-for-pharma-digital-transformation-requires-in-house-talents.

​​Mallon, David, et al. “Beyond Reskilling Investing in Resilience for Uncertain Futures.” Deloitte, Deloitte.com, 2020, https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/focus/human-capital-trends/2020/reskilling-the-workforce-to-be-resilient.html.

Ford, Jeff, et al. “Biopharma Leaders Prioritize R&D, Technological Transformation, and Global Market Presence.” Deloitte, Deloitte.com, 2021, https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/industry/life-sciences/pharmaceutical-industry-trends.html.

Darino, Lucia, et al. “Reimagining How Life Sciences Work Will Be Done in the next Normal.” Mckinsey.com, McKinsey & Company, 2020, https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/life-sciences/our-insights/reimagining-how-life-sciences-work-will-be-done-in-the-next-normal.

Agrawal, Sapana, et al. “To Emerge Stronger from the COVID-19 Crisis, Companies Should Start Reskilling Their Workforces Now.” Mckinsey.com, McKinsey & Company, 2020, https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/people-and-organizational-performance/our-insights/to-emerge-stronger-from-the-covid-19-crisis-companies-should-start-reskilling-their-workforces-now. Accessed 2020.

Agrawal, Gaurav, et al. “COVID-19 Implications for Life Sciences R&D: Recovery and the next Normal.” Mckinsey.com, McKinsey & Company, 2020, https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/life-sciences/our-insights/covid-19-implications-for-life-sciences-r-and-d-recovery-and-the-next-normal.

Darino, Lucia, et al. “Developing Tomorrow’s Leaders in Life Sciences.” Mckinsey.com, McKinsey & Company, 2018, https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/life-sciences/our-insights/developing-tomorrows-leaders-in-life-sciences.

Kristina Belyea