Benefits and strategy to implement Digital Marketing Upskilling

24 May

Benefits and strategy to implement Digital Marketing Upskilling

By Digital Marketing, marketing upskilling

The world is evolving and changing in irreversible ways. From increasing demands from tech-savvy customers to integrating automation in business operations, both organizations and employees need to acquire new skills to adapt to this landscape permanently.

 In addition to this, technology advancements have changed the way business is conducted, which is why employee training programs are no longer a nice perk, but a must to stay competitive. Any organization needs to ensure that top talent is up-to-date on the latest trends, new industry developments, and access to the best technology. Furthermore, corporate leaders must understand that while employee turnover is expensive, the investment is much more than just employee salary. According to a 2016 article, the cost of an organization losing one millennial employee is approximately $25.000. Over time, that cost can add up and affect the corporate bottom line.

One way that companies can provide employee training is through upskilling. This in-depth article will go through what upskilling means, the different tactics that exist, the benefits that it provides, and how to develop an upskilling strategy and culture.

Digital Upskilling: What is it?

Upskilling is the process of teaching your employees new skills that will help them complete their work-related responsibilities with increased efficiency and productivity. Technology has sped up the need for upskilling as new skills are required to adapt to job requirements. Upskilling also helps your employees stay on top of new business best practices and ensures your organization’s competitive advantage. Another important aspect here is that it allows them to move into bigger and better jobs in the organization. Investing in upskilling employees pays off in the long run, as the company saves money on hiring new associates and boosts the morale of tenured ones at the same time. When it comes to digital upskilling, it is vital that both companies and employees are engaged enough to stay relevant. According to a report by Yottaa, there is a massive increase in online traffic, especially because of the ongoing global sanitary crisis.

Additionally, another report from 2019 shows some key trends regarding consumer behavior and e-commerce. According to the same report, 37% of respondents identified brand awareness as the top goal for digital marketing, followed closely by lead generation(26%) and customer experience. Since social media and websites are the best-performing channels for digital marketing, it is vital as an organization to empower your employees to acquire the right skills to further interact with the audiences.

Digital Upskilling tactics

Upskilling is an endeavor that can impose high costs when ignored but reap many benefits when done well. Fortunately enough, there are many ways to go about getting great results which are detailed below.

In-house experts

The people that should be on top of your list when it comes to upskilling are those employees that are excellent at a particular job or task. In many cases, the skill that you want your team members to learn could be someone’s day job. After making a list of the skills you want your employees to know, you should consider employees who can train others, as it presents many advantages for the team. One advantage is that the upskilling process becomes easier as the trainer is readily available to train their colleagues. Additionally, trainers can adapt their training to their trainees as they understand their personality better due to their familiarity.

Mentoring

An article from Forbes magazine shows that about 70% of Fortune 500 companies have a mentorship program in place. Connecting experienced employees with newer team members fosters a sense of community while also rounding out existing training initiatives.

Mentorship opportunities are helpful when individuals are about to take on a more senior position. According to a study by the Intelligence group, 79% of millennials would want their boss to be a mentor, while 88% prefer a collaborative culture rather than a competitive culture. Considering that this generation will be the largest by the end of this decade, mentoring could help them be more engaged and productive.

Microlearning

Large workloads and busy schedules impose many challenges to formal training, and the key here is to think smaller. Short lessons, usually three to six minutes long, might be the solution to meeting the employees where they are. This way of learning can help increase retention rates and employee buy-in. Moving toward a microlearning environment is especially relevant if your team includes remote or deskless workers. This proves to be very efficient in these times where remote work environments have become the norm.

Additionally, microlearning modules are easier to implement, host, and share online. This increases the accessibility for everyone and makes it easier for organizations to migrate the learning content onto a cloud-based learning management system.

There are numerous online courses which can be followed on Lynda (LinkedIn’s learning platform), HubSpot Academy (which boasts lots of courses focused on sales, lead generation and digital marketing) and Google’s Digital Garage.

Use external experts

If none of your employees has expertise in a skill you want your team to learn, there is the possibility to bring in an expert to train your employees. In addition to this, an external expert can install necessary tools at your workplace that will help employees put their new skills to use. Furthermore, you can also decide to use training tools if the expert is far away from your team. This is applicable when your expert is on the other side of the country or working remotely.

In this case, an external expert can also be another company that specializes in company training. NNC Services boasts several courses that companies can undertake to upskill their employees in sales and digital marketing. Such training is the B2B Prospecting Academy. The 2 months program offers insights, tactics and strategies to take your lead generation, digital marketing and sales efforts to the next level. More information about the course can be found here

Upskilling benefits

Upskilling your employees is not just a good idea but a noble concept. Helping others develop while climbing the corporate ladder is just as beneficial for them as it is for your organization. Additionally, many businesses know that employee turnover is expensive, and upskilling employees can prove viable. According to Gallup, the cost of replacing an individual employee can range from one-half to two times the employee’s annual salary.

While employees develop, organizations improve as well, and we’ll take a closer look at some of the corporate benefits below.

Improves employee retention

No one wants to work at a company that doesn’t invest enough in its employees’ career development. Furthermore, employees who are challenged to develop and grow are the happiest ones at any organization. Additionally, employees’ morale is boosted and, by doing so, their productivity increases. 

Upskilling ensures that employees’ skill sets don’t become obsolete and shows that, as an organization, you care about their future and careers.

Improves customer satisfaction

If your organization has happy employees, it’s far more likely that you also have satisfied customers. Happy employees do better work when they believe what they are working towards. In addition to this, upskilling keeps your employees up to date with the latest industry trends, which, in turn, leaves them to give the best recommendations to your end customers.

Ultimately, customers are willing to pay more to work with a more knowledgeable and proactive organization. Furthermore, when your customers are happy with your work, they become more vigorous brand advocates for your organization.

Attracts new talent

According to research by SHRM from 2019, 83% of HR professionals are having recruiting difficulty, and of those HR professionals, 75% say there is a shortage of skills in candidates for job openings. When an organization is successful, employees become brand advocates by recommending your company further and can bring upskilled talent to it.

Develop an upskilling culture and strategy

Organizations can approach upskilling in many ways, but without a clear strategy, that could become a challenge. Having a plan will help you get buy-in from leadership within the organization and the employees themselves. Let’s take an in-depth look at some of the ways that organizations can set up an upskilling strategy.

Personal development plans

As an organization, you should encourage employees to build a Personal Development Plan that includes competencies that they want to improve upon or skills they want to gain. Empowering your employees to develop their plans is key to the success of the upskilling training program. This way, they can identify new skills and competencies that resonate with them instead of being told what they need to learn.

Think both short and long term

It can be easy to get caught up focusing on the newest tools to hit the market. While staying up-to-date with the latest trends is great, companies often oversee that software competencies come and go. Core skills and competencies tend to have longer-term value, and companies must find the right balance based on organizational priorities.

Offer financial incentives to encourage employees to upskill

Organizations should provide their employees with the resources to upskill. Offering financial incentives such as educational rebates and training budgets can go a long way into making employees more motivated to learn new skills. Although providing financial support for external education is less expensive and time-consuming than developing an in-house development program, external training should be just one part of any organization’s upskilling strategy. 

Conclusion

Upskilling training has many advantages, from employee motivation to saving the company money. It can boost performance and reduces the need to spend money to find and hire outside workers with the skills an organization needs. Take the time to invest in upskilling your employees to stay within the organization and help it grow and thrive. Check out our prospecting program called the B2B Prospecting Academy and don't forget to sign up for more interesting content.

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