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Education, Upskilling, Hiring - Innovation Challenge


  • Demands from clients and government organisations for digitally skilled staff

  • A lack of clarity over the most efficient and fastest way to upskill existing staff

  • Upskilling versus hiring – slow speed of complex decision-making processes can delay needed action.

  • Human Resources groups often disconnected from discourse over the effect that digital transformation is having on staff issues.

  • Questions over what type of training is being provided by institutions and how

  • A shortage of sufficiently experienced candidates in the market

  • Institutional/systemic resistance to change

Proposition, CALL FOR ACTION:

  • Identify how to best address client demand by reviewing job descriptions, team structures, organisational hierarchies and chains of line management, acknowledging that digital processes have become central to efficient workflows.

  • Identify specific methods how existing staff can be upskilled. How is enforcing it? Who is paying for it? How can we measure progress and return on investment?

  • Identify Skills Gaps beyond the technical workforce, i.e. management, project management etc.

  • Integrate Human Resources teams better and create deeper understanding for changes is staff skills demands.

  • Create closer links between industry and institutional education providers.

  • Review relationships between education and working time, i.e. does it still make sense to have years of full-time education, followed by full time work, or would more mixed models be more appropriate to a continuously changing environment?

  • Leverage on knowledge transfer between collaborators and international partners systematically.

The Challenge is about how our workforce is adjusting to the digital transformation (or not) and the challenges associated with this at all levels: Hiring, training, delivering projects, meeting client and government demands. How can we find the people, motivate the people we need to work in this changing work environment? How can we help people to go through the times of change without drowning, how can companies make the change journey, see it as an opportunity?

One thing is clear, you cannot do it without considering the human psychology, AI is not yet ready to do the job for us, and if it was, what would we do then?

Key Points:

  • Digital Transformation in the Building Industry is driving CHANGE on a variety of levels, affecting most aspects of the work environment:

  • Business Models

  • Organisational Processes

  • Project Management Processes

  • Digital and non-digital technology

  • Relevance of data transmission and control

  • Etc.

  • All of the above listed aspects have a profound impact on how the workforce, i.e. the individuals go about their daily work routine.

  • The Digital Transformation is and will increasingly affect the way people work, interact with each other and change the tasks they are required to do, are able to do, want to do in a fundamental way.

  • As most individuals work 40 hours+ a week for most of their lives, these changes are actually affecting OUR LIVES in a fundamental way.

  • Education, both formal and informal education from early ages to vocational training, company sponsored training, self-learning etc. is intrinsically linked to the digital transformation.

  • Looking beyond the Building Industry, digital ways of learning, Artificial intelligence, the exposure of children and adults to information technology is affecting the way we think about learning and the digital environment as a whole. More and more aspects of our lives are digitised, from social networking dating, professional network… you name it.

  • The Building Industry itself, undergoing the digital transformation is at the same time challenged by a degree of requirement to change that has not been seen before, ever in this industry. This poses several challenges:

  1. The awareness (or lack of) that adaptation to change by the workforce is necessary for economic survival.

  2. The search for the most suitable method to change the workforce skillset as a whole (generally both, training of existing workforce and replacement, i.e. hiring are aspects considered)

  3. The actual training delivery methods.

  4. Structural/systemic resistance to change that can be openly expressed, experienced in “passive resistance”, behind-the-scenes boycott etc.

  5. Psychological factors: Personality issues.

  6. Questions around who would be involved in all of these processes/considerations? Mangers, Human resources staff, technical leaders, digital experts, head-hunters, specialist consultants, Allocated Digital Champions etc.

No. 1: The Human Factor:

After all, everything we do should ultimately benefit the human. Many, few. If what we do doesn’t lead to an overall increase of human satisfaction, why would we do it? We survived without anything digital for Millions of years. Even 30 years ago, anything digital affected the vast majority of people only marginally.

If we think of the digital transformation and it’s challenge primarily as a challenge around CHANGE. Change in general, we can look at “the human” and ask ourselves, how od humans respond do change “in general”?

Looking at the human in relationship to change, we keep coming across what might be “stereotypes”, but these seems relevant, as these notions keep being repeated. The Stereotype categorises humans into maybe 5 categories when it comes to change:

  • The Pioneers

  • Early adopters/adapters

  • Late, i.e. reluctant adopters

  • Laggards

  • Resisters

Obviously there are an infinite number of in-betweens, but what we keep seeing is that when Pioneers are joined by a large enough number of “early adopters” and then “reluctant adopters” ultimately the laggards and the resisters will find it too uncomfortable to be the resisting minority and will join.

What are our tools to go about this systematically?

  • Change management protocol?

  • Business Process Mapping?

  • Recruitment of specialists?

  • External training

  • Internal training

  • Replacement of staff

The simple answer is explained via this YouTube video:

Interested in participating ?

Participation is free, but it is limited to a maximum of 25 participants, to ensure the discussion is action focused, and everybody has a chance to collaborate fully. For this reason we will be preselecting the participants based on their passion and willingness to achieve change and make an impact. If you are one of them we would like to hear from you.

This Workshop is part of the Co-Creation Programme.

Follow the conversations on our LinkedIn Group:

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