Deep Dive with Propella : Industry Insights

Upskill or Hire: Which Is The Best Way To Improve Staffing?

Upskill or Hire: Which Is The Best Way To Improve Staffing?

Upskill or Hire: Which Is The Best Way To Improve Staffing?

After the advent of COVID 19, the hiring trends of around the world are constantly changing. Evolving business models, technological advancements and employee expectation can also be attributed to the ever changing landscape of work and business worlds. To remain competitive in the ever expanding business realm, organisations need to balance the company’s commercial trading with the development of innovation and reinvention. Therefore, having the right skills, in the right place, available at the right time, during a period of digital transformation is a top business concern especially when it comes to procurement for human resources.

Digital transformation for businesses requires more than just learning how to use technology or automating processes. It involves creating an agile mindset that is analytical, experimental and creative. The digital transformation of any business requires a new set of skills and perspectives that may not already be present in the business itself. Though the new skills might be hard to learn, having an open mind will be vital for any future HR procurement strategy.

It is never too late to learn

Employees want to learn. After the advent of pandemic, companies had to switch to a work from home module to keep its employees safe and also to keep their businesses running. The work from home module gave a lot of scope to a number of regular workers to invest time and money to upskill themselves without having the need to compromise on work. This led to an attitude shift towards learning. So employees expect a work environment that drives them to learn and develop necessary skills they need through real time experiences, access to knowledge and information.

According to a recent study with Kelly services on workplace trends amongst 14,000 job seekers, 91%participants said the hiring company’s approach to training and development was the main factor in deciding where to work. 70% of participants also said they prioritise learning over salary hikes and promotion opportunities from a new employer.

Talent management- Is upskilling the new approach?

Though the approach of facilitating employees to learn during their tenure at a company is believed to bring about turbulent change in talent procurement in the modern day businesses, is it enough? Talent shortages are growing, making it difficult for businesses to procure talent about the availability of much-needed skills.

Talent management is primarily concerned with identifying high potential employees and performance management. The performance of employees is looked at through a hierarchical, organisational structure. When these are transformed into something that supports a learning culture the skill and knowledge gap will be filled in due course of time.

So what are the alternatives to up-skilling the workforce in the short-term? Businesses are looking to transfer their existing teams to see if the teams can be transitioned to other parts of businesses to facilitate development.

Research has discovered that employees who have the opportunity to transfer internally within different streams of work at the same organisation are more engaged and committed to the organisation are likely to stay longer. The organisation can take a fresh look at the job design; breaking roles down into tasks and reallocating to employees whose skills are a closer match.

The growing use of automation in roles involving repetitive processes can help the talent procurement. This way, when automation replaces human work-force the talent procurements wing in any upcoming business can take the lead in creating new roles and identifying talent relevant to the business

Recruitment takes longer than businesses anticipate

When a company hires a new candidate, external candidature can take upto three times as long as internal allocation of resources of the existing workforce to be productive in a new role. Though internal transfers in an organisation is proving to be profitable to businesses in many ways, it is also feared that internal transfer cuts out the organisation’s scope to incur fresh perspectives, insight and experiences.

Recruitment does not just take time. It also costs a fortune to businesses. If the role is newly created by the company, the job description may make it difficult for recruitment agencies to find the right candidate for the role which makes the businesses pay more for the recruitment agency.

The new trend of contingent labour

Businesses in the world that exist through one of the most major pandemics that the human race has ever had, are now preferring to use contingent labour. There is a rapid increase in the percentage of people working on non-permanent arrangements as freelancers, temps, contractors or consultants. Employees now prefer not being tied to a single organisation to broaden their skills, gain knowledge of different sectors, technologies and structures. They do not come cheap because their skills are in high demand.

The deployment of contingent workforce can help shift the dynamics of work culture in developing and established businesses. Harnessing a contingency can also help in building a more creative and innovative work environment owing to the availability of different personalities with varied backgrounds and experiences.


Creating a culture of employee’s growth and development can help in employee retention and engagement at this time when organisations are looking to be stable in the ever changing job market. By allocating different existing resources to available vacancies will encourage them to stay longer in an organisation because ultimately, it makes the employee a well-rounded person, urging them to learn more.

On the other hand, it is also important to invest in new hires to gain fresher and newer perspectives for the betterment of the organisation. Let’s talk!