September 26, 2022

Skilling, digitization and purpose key to optimise performance

Human capital – the total knowledge, skills, experience, health and other characteristics of the workforce is a critical building block for an organisation. The organisation’s performance depends on its human resources.

Improving the performance of employees in an organisations is a vital goal. It requires a significant effort and focus on performance management to enable a positive change to the way people work.

Here are some ways to ensure peak performance levels on an ongoing basis –

1. Build agility and resilience

Agility and resilience are fundamental to enhancing existing skills and developing new ones to adapt to the evolving world of work.

Agility – Ability to work swiftly and seamlessly while facing challenges and adapting to changes

An organisation can build agility by:

  • Focusing on employees’ needs
  • Fostering employees’ hard skills and soft skills for the future of work
  • Managing employee expectations
  • Designing a workforce structure that enables quicker decisions, empowers employees and reduces risk

Resilience – The ability to respond to pressure, deal with adversity and overcome challenges

Develop a resilient workforce by:

  • Creating a positive and safe work environment where employees can take calculated risks and treat failure as an opportunity for collective learning.
  • Prioritising employee wellbeing. In a study of 31,000 people from 31 countries published by Microsoft in 2022, 53% of survey respondents stated that they were more likely to prioritise their health and wellbeing over work than before the pandemic. And, when the organisation focuses on the overall wellbeing of an employee, it builds agility and resilience in them.
  • Use recognition and rewards to boost employee morale.

2. Invest in learning – reskilling and upskilling

An organisation can invest in skilling, reskilling and upskilling by:

  • Ensuring all employees receive training applicable to their current role and is future-focused.
  • Knowing people’s professional goals and charting career paths for them. Build capabilities, so they can achieve their goals.
  • Having a formalised approach to improving capabilities by:
    • Implementing a knowledge management system that supports continuous learning.
    • Integrating skilling with HR processes like performance management.
    • Ensuring that business units and HR functions co-own the learning and development program.

3. Leverage technology

Companies across industries have to transform into “tech-first” entities to survive and thrive in the future of work. A key success factor here is empowering employees with technology. There are various ways to do it –

  • Automate processes to increase productivity, improve the quality of output and resolve unexpected problems. It will help people to focus on their core work, innovation and improvements.
  • Create an ecosystem of communication and collaboration tools that allows workers to interact seamlessly and streamline workflows.
  • Implement modern methods such as gamification and employee rewards and recognition platforms to increase employee engagement and, thereby performance.

4. Integrate purpose alongside work

As per research done by BCG, 67% of millennials expect employers to have purpose and their jobs to have a societal impact.

The purpose of an organisation is the underlying reason why the organisation exists. It explains how the organisation makes a positive difference in others’ lives. When employees are aligned with the purpose, they connect personally with the business. This can result in many favourable outcomes –

  • With uncertainty becoming the norm and change being the only constant, the more employees connect with purpose, the higher the employee engagement is.
  • People who feel like they are part of something big and meaningful will have an elevated sense of loyalty and be more productive than people who don’t.
  • When an employee finds his work creating value not just for stakeholders but also for society and the environment, they find their work more fulfilling. They are more likely to take initiative and innovate. This will help the company pursue its purpose and also outperform its competitors.

An organisation can achieve lasting success when it empowers its employees to reach their full potential. This means giving them the right environment to remain motivated and perform at their peak continuously.