By Kathleen Federici, MEd

Why has upskilling suddenly become so important? The short answer is the digital economy. There is a relentless commitment to achieve more with less, especially now during the COVID pandemic.

Upskilling is the process of acquiring new and relevant competencies needed today and in the near future. Common examples of upskilling efforts include digital skills, analytics skills, and organizational transformation skills. Upskilling is being able to work socially in a digital world.

This sea of change means that many traditional jobs are morphing into something different or disappearing altogether. Upskilling is the process of preparing the workforce to fill these new positions. I have been asked by those furloughed or laid off what they should do now. My answer is to upskill. In the words of Ohio Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted, “When we come out of this, the digital economy will be even more powerful than it is now. This is a time to upskill yourself.”

According to the World Economic Forum, 65 percent of children entering primary school today will work in jobs that don’t exist yet. To survive and thrive in this economy, we need to be agile, and that means seizing new skills by upskilling your skills.

When you think about upskilling yourself, set your own goals. What do you want to do and why? Identify the new skills you will need to accomplish that goal you just set. Google and Udemy are two websites that offer free upskilling courses. Of, course, IPMI has your back when it comes to upskilling by way of the CAPP credential.

Build your upskilling plan in the comfort and safety of your living room. You’re worth it.

Kathleen Federici, MEd, is IPMI’s director of professional development.