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2019 Job Skills Assessment - Part 1 of 2

2019 Job Skills Assessment (Part 1 of 2) (Insight and Projection)

Every job requires a certain amount of skill. Whether that skill is social or technical, skills are required to get the work done within any professional setting. No matter what the skill is, each one has its own merit and relevance to its field. Part 1 of our 2019 Job Skill Assessment will explore the importance of reskilling for employees and how industries have changed according to what skills are trending.

In order to stay relevant in any professional setting, one must continue to hone and master their job skill. This is especially true for those looking to change careers and start a new occupation. The job skill a professional might possess now might not be relevant a new job industry. For example, a computer technician with years of computer skills will need to reassess their skill sets if they decide to move to a non-technical industry, like culinary. It is important to know what job skills are relevant in a specific job industry in order to succeed.

According to LinkedIn, between 2015 - 2017, having Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) as a skill requirement has been growing within various industries. Other than the obvious tech industries, such as software development or "Big Data," industries such as financial services and health care are also requiring A.I. as a job skill.

Sourced from LinkedIn, Graph recreated by HRCap

As the world become more data driven, having employees that are able to analyze data and apply it to the business are becoming a hot commodity. Having skills in A.I and Big Data allows an employee to analyze the data being collected to project and gain insight for strategic planning. However, having just the technical skills do not lead to a successful career. Companies are beginning to realize that other than possessing "hard skills" (technical skills), one must also possess "soft skills" to properly analyze, utilize, and infer from the data. The job market categorizes these positions as "hybrid jobs."

Hybrid jobs combine the technical skills, like A.I or Big Data, and soft skills, like problem-solving and creativity, to successfully analyze data. Research done by Matt Sigelman at Burning Glass Technologies indicates that more and more job are requiring soft skills in addition to hard skills. As such, employees need to "reskill" in order to stay relevant in the ever changing job market.

Sourced from Matt Sigelman, "By the numbers: The job market for data science and analytics," Burning Glass Technologies.Graph recreated by HRCap

As technology continues to advance, it is imperative that employees reskill according to what is currently trending in the job market. The World Economic Forum surveyed various global companies and found that by 2022, proficiency in new technologies will be important but also "human" (soft) skills such as creativity, critical thinking, attention to detail, and problem-solving will be as important or more so. We’re approaching an era in which A.I. or improved technological software is overpowering the individuals’ presences in the industry. Companies are restructuring their organizations in order to have individuals utilize the advancing technology and combining it with their “soft skills” that machines cannot possess. The following tables projects that between 2018 and 2022, the top trending job skills will largely remain similar, and contain both technology focused and "human" skills.

Source: Future of Jobs Survey 2018, World Economic Forum

Source: Future of Jobs Survey 2018, World Economic Forum

However, as the demand for technology focused and "human" skills are on the rise, demand for skills such as manual labor, management of personnel, and basic technology installation and maintenance are declining.

Source: Future of Jobs Survey 2018, World Economic Forum

In order to reskill, an employee can take additional classes through higher education programs provided at universities or receive corporate training to do so. Companies are increasingly implementing programs that help develop and train employees in new skills. Whether the training is done online or in a classroom, there is a trend to support reskilling of employees throughout the job industry. According to a report by LinkedIn, the budget to support talent development has increased between 2017 - 2019, demonstrating the importance of learning within an organization. Companies realize that reskilling is a more sustainable way to retain current talent, instead of hiring someone new, which can be expensive and challenging.

Job skills are an important asset to an employee in any industry. It is important to keep oneself up to date in what job skills are trending, especially if there are plans for a career change. Mastering a trending job skill will lead to more opportunities, a longer retention at a company, or a higher chance of getting hired. It can also be the deciding factor within a pool of similarly qualified candidates. Take advantage of the data and research available to understand the ever changing job industry. This will help enhance one's career growth for the future.

Part 2 of our 2019 Job Skills Assessment will assess the importance of reskilling the workforce in order for companies to stay competitive.

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