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Earlier this month, we launched our Beyond Skills report. Through surveying more than 1,000 executives and senior leaders across several sectors, we assessed the growing capability chasm. This chasm was identified by 60% of respondents as a real problem in their organisation. We defined it as the imbalance between the skills people have and the ones they need.

A lot of businesses have changed since 2020. So, we mapped how that chasm compares to the changing attitudes around learning and development. We found that developing peoples’ capabilities is essential to business success. Across the board, 71% of businesses that saw growth last year did increase their training budgets, even though each sector has its own unique challenges.

But what can you learn about the capabilities chasm in the tech and telco industry? Read on to find out.

What the Beyond Skills report highlighted for the tech and telco sector

Relative to the other industries we surveyed (finance, fast-moving consumer goods, pharmaceuticals and government and public services), the tech and telco sector saw massive growth. This industry, unsurprisingly, is very much aware of the value of digital transformation. They also understand the correlation between that transformation and investing in learning and development, with 52% of respondents saying that their business increased learning and development budgets in 2020.

Beyond Skills Report Highlights

In spite of that, 69% still said that their organisation was stuck in survival mode at the expense of capability development. Almost two-thirds of respondents also said that their L&D budgets would likely increase in the next five to eight months as the economy recovers.

In the tech and telco sector, it seems that many leaders recognise the importance of upskilling. But challenges like a lack of infrastructure and financial barriers can still get in the way of success. That’s what led 64% of respondents to worry that the capability chasm could leave them unable to deal with future challenges. Respondents in the tech and telco sector were also worried about the impact this lack of skills could have on people’s mental health, with 63% expressing concern.

Change has to happen now. If organisations want to keep growing, investing in capabilities is essential.

How does tech and telco differ from other sectors?

The other four sectors we surveyed had both similar and different opinions surrounding the capabilities chasm.

  • Pharmaceuticals, which was in the eye of the COVID-19 storm, reported both growth and decline through 2020. The respondents from this sector were mostly satisfied with their organisation’s investments in L&D, but 62% still wish their leaders appreciated the value of upskilling more.
  • Financial services almost matched tech and telco in their concern about a lack of upskilling, leaving them unequipped to face future challenges. They also felt that their current L&D strategies are not fit for purpose.
  • Fast-moving consumer goods saw the most cuts to L&D budgets out of any sector, but surprisingly, were not as concerned about mental health and wellbeing as the other four sectors.
  • Government and public services had to adapt quickly, and faced more red tape than the other sectors. When it came to wishing for more investment in skill development, they reported the highest numbers at almost three quarters.

What should you do next?

Based on the Beyond Skills report, we know that the tech and telco sector is not lacking in technical skills, but is lacking in some business capabilities. We know that the majority of leaders will say they want to invest in people development, but training programmes they’ve encountered so far aren’t efficient in meeting their demands. The majority of respondents want more investment in skills they know they’ll need to find success in the future, like marketing.

Especially in a sector like tech and telco, necessary capabilities are changing all the time. That means there is a constant need to stay informed and develop relevant skills and capabilities in areas like business and data. But, it isn’t always easy to find the right kind of personalised training.

Look for learning that can arm your people, teams and entire organisation with the capabilities they need to be prepared for current and future challenges. It’s about a tailored approach that can help you foster a culture of learning that embeds skill development into everything you do. That kind of connected, engaging learning is the way forward.

About Avado

At Avado, we believe that true transformation isn’t digital, it’s human. We build professional future skills to help diverse talent access and accelerate careers through award-winning learning experiences that deliver tangible and measurable impact. We upskill people, uplift culture and future-proof organisations in a fast-moving world.

Avado is proud to be a people-transformation partner to some of the largest and most innovative organisations in the UK including: Google, BT, NHS, British Airways, UK Civil Service, Legal & General and AstraZeneca.

To find out more, visit www.avadolearning.com

Nilesh Jha