4 Key Reasons To Grow Your Workforce Internally

4 Key Reasons To Grow Your Workforce Internally

As the skills gap continues to widen, especially in technical fields, companies need to consider the long-term value of training employees internally versus hiring new people. A shortage of top talent already exists across several industries. According to the 2018 Talent Shortage Survey,  33% of employers say the main reason they can't fill roles is a lack of applicants, while 27% say candidates lack the necessary hard or soft skills.

Technological growth isn’t going to slow down any time soon. It’s on business leaders to help their workforce adopt the necessary skills as fast as possible. Otherwise, they will experience more harm than good from digital transformation.

The big question is, should organizations hire new talent or retrain their existing workforce to accomplish this? Business leaders are starting to shift towards the later with a 2:1 margin choosing training over hiring or outsourcing as the preferred method for addressing a shortage of skills in their own companies.

4 Benefits of Growing Your Workforce Internally

1 | Retain Your Top Talent That Drive Business Success

The #1 reason employees leave their jobs is a lack of career growth in their current position. Combine this with the talent shortage and leaders are faced with an expensive recruitment challenge. Retaining top talent has become a top priority because replacing them is increasingly difficult.  

Promoting internal career growth across your organization can improve engagement and retainment. If employees feel they are being challenged and expanding their skill set, they are more likely to stay with your organization. Having experts in your arsenal not only improves the speed and reliability of internal operations, but enhances your product or service offering, giving your company a distinct advantage that is hard to replicate.

2 | Strengthen Your Workforce With Less Risk  

Every new hire comes with an inherent risk that can be costly. The Department of Labor estimates the price of a bad hire to be at least 30% of the employee's first-year earnings. If you rely on hiring to fill your skills gap, then you take on an inherent risk that could be hurting your bottom-line.

You already know what to expect with your existing employees. You’ve confirmed they have the intangible factors like key soft skills and cultural fit. By focusing your resources on internal development, you don’t have to start from scratch every time you need a new skill. This means  business managers can strengthen their workforce at no additional risk.

3 | Avoid Learning Curves That Cause Performance Lags

By training internally, you can avoid on-boarding lags that slow down production. In the modern world, everything moves at the speed of light. Your systems, people, and tools need to operate as efficiently as possible which means reducing the learning curve of new employees.  

While new hires may have the right industry skills, they still need to learn skills unique to your organization. For instance, a new developer will need time to learn how your unique DevOps systems and tools operate. A steep learning curve can lead to declines in your team’s overall performance as the new developer catches up to speed.

By retraining existing employees, you can develop new skills while still maintaining your team’s high performance. Managers can plan ahead by evaluating their current workforce’s skills and capabilities then creating a plan that does not disrupt current operations but gives employees the training they need for your business to continue its success.

4 |  Future-Proof Your Organization By Preparing Your Existing Workforce

Digital transformation is inevitable. New technologies are spreading faster than our workforce can learn the skills to implement them. Businesses that are prepared to adopt digital will emerge as the leaders, while others will experience painful skill gaps.

Related Post: The Surprising Reason Why Your Digital Transformation Could Fail

Given the shortage of digital skills, hiring is not a viable answer. Business leaders need to prepare their existing employees by retraining them in the required technical skills. By identifying the strengths and weaknesses of your workforce, you can develop tailored programs that address these skills and begin preparing your workforce for change.   

Your people are your most valuable asset. You should maximize their capabilities just as you would any other resource. With a shortage of talent, relying on hiring is no longer a sustainable way to grow your workforce. Business leaders need to look inward at their current skills and identify opportunities for growth. Investing in your workforce today can prepare your business for success in the future.

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Allison Davis