Talk About Skilling
Help keep skills in the headlines and front of mind to inspire everyone to get behind skilling for young people.
Today’s young people urgently need the skills to enter new sectors or set up their own businesses. Talking about skills is a first step towards changing things for the better for youth.
A staggering 75% of young people aged 15–24 years are off-track when it comes to attaining the skills needed for employment. To push for action on skilling, share your insights on what new skills mean for your sector and organization.
By 2030, 2 billion young people will be seeking education and employment opportunities. The world can’t wait a minute longer to invest in skilling to meet this future demand.
Steps you can take
Start talking now about the skills needed for the future of work. Conversations lead to change, and change can solve the skills gap so that your sector isn’t left short in future.
Step 1: Keep the skills angle in the news
Keep the focus on the skills angle by raising it in your conversations, on social media channels, in press releases and at events. Insights from your organization can be highly influential.
Talking about skills as they relate to current events and in terms of future trends helps to raise awareness of the skills gap. In turn, this can amplify the call for investment in skilling for youth.
Consider speaking up about skills:
- in new and emerging areas – like the digital sphere and green economy
- that support new approaches in key sectors – such as education and agriculture
- learned from lived experiences – for example, storytelling, resilience, community building, peer support
- that create the right mindsets and a broader definition of success.
To find out how business and government can help address the youth employment and skilling challenge, read the GenU Reaching YES report. For more detail from GenU on how to make it happen, see the Secondary Education and Skills report.
For more on how leaders like you can support youth to move into work, read the Futuremakers by Standard Chartered report Unleashing the Potential of Young People.
Learn how a multinational business like Unilever is working to prepare the future workforce. And explore details of the GenU Passport to Earning digital learning platform.
Step 2: Talk to your employees about skill building
Skills should be a focus closer to home too. Pay attention to your own workforce’s skilling needs, especially among younger employees who are early on in their professional development journey.
The Great Resignation, brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, is expected to continue according to the PwC report Global Workforce Hopes and Fears Survey 2022. With 1 in 5 people saying that they’ll move jobs in the next year, the report stresses how important it is that employers value their workers. It’s not only about higher pay but also supporting personal fulfilment and meaning at work.
The survey draws on the views of 52,000 workers in 44 countries. Almost one third (29%) of respondents said that their country lacks people with the skills needed to perform their job. Thailand, India and Brazil are among the countries with the biggest perceived skills gap.
Only 40% of employees said their company is upskilling, and just 26% said their employer is automating or enhancing work with technology. While 30% of employees worry that technology will replace their role within three years, 39% worry about not getting enough digital and technology skills training at work.
Younger employees aged 18–24 years are less satisfied with their jobs. Many joined the workforce during the pandemic and have had fewer in-person interactions with colleagues and managers. Younger employees are twice as likely as ‘baby boomers’ to worry about technology replacing their roles soon. They’re also notably more worried about a lack of digital and technology skills training.
Talk about skills in your workplace to make sure that your workforce is satisfied with the skilling opportunities that you offer. Skilling is a great investment in employee retention as well as in the future of work.
Talking about the skills in short supply in your sector or organization is the first step to meeting the future demand for those skills. Spread the word about the urgent need to skill young people now.