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Upskill Your Team Before Hiring New Staff

Upskill your team

Rather than immediately looking to hire new staff, first, consider opportunities to upskill your team. Developing and training existing employees enables you to fill open roles faster and more affordably than recruiting externally. Providing professional development opportunities boosts morale, retention and engagement across your team. In many situations, taking the time to upskill your team makes more strategic sense than bringing on additional headcount. Upskilling delivers advantages such as:

Lower Costs

Recruiting externally has many hidden costs beyond just the salary for a new hire. Advertising open positions across multiple platforms add up quickly. Many companies also pay hefty fees to recruitment agencies to source candidates. Then there’s the cost of interviewing – every hour spent screening and interviewing candidates is time away from normal work.

Once a new person is hired, there are costs associated with orientation, training and getting them familiar with systems and processes. An existing employee already has much of this knowledge, avoiding the ramp-up time for a new starter. Providing upskilling to current staff is often much more affordable than recruiting externally.

Faster Ramp-Up

It takes time for a new employee to get up to speed. They need to learn the specifics of their role, as well as how the company operates. An existing staff member moving into a new position already understands company culture and processes. This significantly shortens the learning curve, allowing them to operate productively much faster than an external candidate.

Rather than spending months training a new starter, upskilling enables you to fill open roles efficiently. Upskilled employees can quickly move into new positions and deliver results.

Better Cultural Fit

Bringing in external hires carries risk around cultural fit. No matter how rigorous the hiring process is, it’s impossible to predict with full certainty how well a new person will assimilate into company culture. An existing employee has already demonstrated their ability to embrace company values.

Transitioning internal staff into new roles means bringing in people who already understand workplace norms and mesh well with teams. Familiarity with co-workers enables upskilled employees to collaborate smoothly. Hiring from outside doesn’t provide the same guarantees.

Improved Engagement

Investing in professional development for current employees has motivational effects. Employees appreciate when companies demonstrate commitment to nurturing internal talent. Providing upskilling opportunities shows workers their value, keeping them engaged and challenged.

This engagement boosts retention. Rather than losing top performers to other companies, upskilling helps retain talent over the long term. Developing staff skills makes them more capable and confident in their roles.

Reduced Hiring Risks

Hiring external candidates always carries an element of risk. Even after robust screening and interviews, a new hire may not work out as expected. No matter how qualified, there are performance uncertainties when bringing in new employees.

Internal hirings significantly reduce risks. With existing employees, companies already have experience working with them. Their skills and work ethic are known quantities. Promoting internally mitigates the risks companies face when hiring from the outside.

Builds Morale

Providing upskilling opportunities boosts team morale. When you upskill your team, employees feel valued knowing their company wants to help develop their abilities. This motivates staff and enhances loyalty, as they see first-hand the commitment to nurturing talent from within.

Seeing co-workers upskilled and promoted also builds trust across teams. Employees view the company as fair, with advancement opportunities for all based on merit. Morale remains high, avoiding the jealousy issues that sometimes occur with external hiring.

Sustains Company Knowledge

Long-tenured employees accumulate vast institutional knowledge. When staff leave a company, they take that knowledge with them. Constant turnover results in a loss of processes, context and know-how.

Upskilling retains organisational knowledge already embedded within teams. Rather than walking out the door, longtime employees apply their expertise to new roles. Companies preserve their intelligence advantage by upskilling for open positions.

Accelerates Succession Planning

Using upskilling to fill vacancies aids with succession planning. As leaders and top performers approach retirement, companies need ways to ensure continuity. Developing rising talent internally prepares the next generation to step into key roles.

Building bench strength through upskilling enables smooth leadership transitions. Employees groomed to take on greater duties keep operations running consistently as management changes over time.

Boosts Diversity

Developing existing staff opens avenues to improve diversity from within. Employees represent an already-vetted talent pool including women, minorities and other underrepresented groups. Upskilling gives opportunities to these groups working to break into new roles or levels.

Providing training elevates diversity levels as staff shift into jobs they have been primed to succeed in. Companies don’t need to rely solely on external hiring to enhance diversity when they upskill one of their team.

The Takeaway

While bringing in new people has advantages in certain situations, upskilling often delivers superior benefits. For sustaining company knowledge, boosting morale, controlling costs and mitigating hiring risks, upskilling existing employees should be the first path evaluated.

Invest in developing your staff! The payoff comes not only in their expanded capabilities but also in optimised spending, motivated teams and faster results. Tap into internal talent first before looking externally. You might just find the people and skills you need are already right inside your organisation.

At Lewis College, we offer a wide range of courses to upskill administrative and medical secretarial staff. Our online PA, EA, Office Manager, Senior Administrator and Medical Secretary Diplomas allow professionals to gain new capabilities without leaving their current roles. With flexible home study options and continuous tutor support, we make professional development easily achievable.

Lewis College has decades of experience providing accredited NCFE CQ qualifications that boost team skills. Explore our signature personalised approach, and CPD-certified curriculum. Discover how our courses can help you cultivate talent, empower your staff and build an agile, future-fit administrative workforce.

Tags :
culture fit,diversity,employee engagement,hiring,human resources,morale,professional development,recruitment,retention,succession planning,training,upskilling
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