Skills Training and Development
In Cockburn’s (1983) perspective, skills, training, and development are interconnected concepts that relate to a worker’s performance and potential.
Skills refer to the knowledge and expertise that a worker has accumulated through education, training, and experience. These skills are essential for carrying out specific tasks, and they contribute to a worker’s overall job performance.
Training, on the other hand, refers to the process of instructing workers in the specific skills and knowledge required for a job, profession, occupation, or practice. Training programs aim to enhance workers’ existing skills or to provide them with new skills that are needed to perform their job effectively.
Development is the process of bringing out a worker’s future potential. It involves providing opportunities for workers to learn and grow beyond their immediate job requirements. Development programs aim to improve workers’ overall abilities, including leadership, decision-making, and problem-solving, to prepare them for future challenges and career advancement.
In summary, Cockburn’s perspective suggests that skills, training, and development are essential components of a worker’s performance and potential. Skills are the foundation on which training and development are built, and training and development aim to enhance and extend workers’ existing skills to prepare them for future success.
- 1 Skills and Training: Who is responsible the government or businesses?
- 2 National Government: Training and Education policies in Nepal
- 3 Investors in People (IIP) Framework
- 4 Differences between organizations that develop and train their staff and organizations that don’t!
- 5 Employability and labor market changes driven by technological change during Covid 19
- 6 How might jobs and skills transformation affect your graduate employability?
- 7 The Line manager’s role in coaching their teams
- 8 Training Needs Analysis (TNA)
- 9 Emotional labour : Gendered and raced competencies in service work?
Skills and Training: Who is responsible the government or businesses?
The government has a responsibility to create policies and programs that promote the development of skills and training. This may include funding for education and training programs, tax incentives for companies that invest in training, and regulations that encourage employers to provide training opportunities for their employees. The government also has a role in identifying the skills that are in demand and ensuring that training programs are aligned with the needs of the labor market.
Businesses also have a responsibility to provide training and development opportunities for their employees. This is essential for ensuring that workers have the skills and knowledge necessary to perform their jobs effectively and to adapt to changing circumstances. Companies may provide on-the-job training, offer formal training programs, or support their employees in pursuing additional education or training.
Ultimately, the responsibility for skills and training is shared between the government and businesses. The government sets the framework for skills and training policies and programs, while companies have a responsibility to invest in the development of their workforce. By working together, the government and businesses can help ensure that workers have the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in the labor market and contribute to economic growth and development
National Government: Training and Education policies in Nepal
The National Government of Nepal has implemented several policies and programs aimed at improving training and education in the country. Here are a few examples:
- Education for All: The government has committed to providing education for all, including those in marginalized communities, through the Education for All program. The program aims to ensure that every child has access to quality education, regardless of their social and economic background.
- Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET): The government has established a National Vocational Qualifications Framework (NVQF) to ensure that TVET programs are aligned with the needs of the labor market. The NVQF includes a system of qualifications that are recognized by employers, ensuring that graduates of TVET programs have the skills and knowledge necessary for employment.
- School Sector Development Plan: The government has implemented the School Sector Development Plan, which aims to improve the quality of education in Nepal. The plan includes initiatives such as teacher training, curriculum development, and the provision of textbooks and other learning materials.
- Higher Education Reform: The government has implemented a Higher Education Reform program aimed at improving the quality of higher education in Nepal. The program includes initiatives such as the establishment of a National Accreditation Council, the development of new academic programs, and the expansion of research and development.
Overall, the National Government of Nepal has implemented a range of policies and programs aimed at improving training and education in the country. These initiatives aim to ensure that every citizen has access to quality education and training opportunities, with the goal of improving their employability and contributing to the country’s economic growth and development
Investors in People (IIP) Framework
The Investors in People (IIP) framework includes standards in nine indicators that are divided into three categories: Leading, Supporting, and Improving. These categories are designed to provide a comprehensive framework for organizations to improve their people management practices and to create a culture of continuous improvement.
- Leading: The leading category includes three indicators: Leading and inspiring people, Living the organization’s values and behaviors, and Empowering and involving people. These indicators focus on leadership, management, and communication skills, and emphasize the importance of creating a positive work environment, involving employees in decision-making processes, and providing opportunities for development.
- Leading and inspiring people: This indicator focuses on leadership, management, and communication skills. It includes setting clear expectations, providing feedback and recognition, and creating a culture of continuous improvement.
- Living the organization’s values and behaviors: This indicator focuses on ensuring that the organization’s values and behaviors are embedded in all aspects of the business, from recruitment and performance management to customer service and innovation.
- Empowering and involving people: This indicator focuses on involving employees in decision-making processes, providing opportunities for development, and encouraging innovation and creativity.
- Supporting: The supporting category includes three indicators: Managing performance, Learning and development, and Managing talent. These indicators focus on the processes and practices that support the development of employees, including setting clear goals and objectives, providing feedback and coaching, and identifying and developing talent within the organization.
- Managing performance: This indicator focuses on setting clear goals and objectives, providing feedback and coaching, and regularly reviewing performance to ensure that employees are meeting the expectations of the organization.
- Learning and development: This indicator focuses on providing employees with the skills and knowledge necessary to perform their roles effectively, both through formal training programs and on-the-job learning opportunities.
- Managing talent: This indicator focuses on identifying and developing talent within the organization, including succession planning and career development.
- Improving: The improving category includes three indicators: Recognizing and rewarding high performance, Building employee engagement, and Evaluating and improving people management. These indicators focus on creating a culture of continuous improvement, including providing recognition and rewards for high performance, promoting employee engagement, and continuously evaluating and refining the organization’s approach to people management.
- Recognizing and rewarding high performance: This indicator focuses on providing recognition and rewards for employees who perform well, including financial incentives, career development opportunities, and public recognition.
- Building employee engagement: This indicator focuses on creating a positive work environment, encouraging employee feedback, and promoting work-life balance.
- Evaluating and improving people management: This indicator focuses on measuring the effectiveness of people management practices, identifying areas for improvement, and continuously evaluating and refining the organization’s approach to people management.
By dividing the indicators into these three categories, the IIP framework provides a structured approach to improving people management practices. It emphasizes the importance of leadership, employee engagement, talent development, and continuous improvement, and provides a comprehensive framework for organizations to follow. Overall, the IIP framework is designed to help organizations create a motivated and engaged workforce that is capable of driving business success.
Differences between organizations that develop and train their staff and organizations that don’t!
- Expansive workplaces-in these workplaces workers are given a breadth of learning opportunities and contacts. The workers can access contacts inside and outside of the firm and are engaged in a range of tasks;
- Restrictive workplaces-tasks and responsibilities are narrowly defined, discretion is automated, ‘scripted away’, or is physically relocated. So, novice workers cannot access experienced or expert workers to learn from.
(Unwin et al; 2004)
Here is a table that outlines some differences between organizations that develop and train their staff and organizations that do not:
|Organizations that develop and train their staff
|Organizations that do not develop and train their staff
|Higher retention rates as employees feel valued and invested in
|Lower retention rates as employees may feel undervalued and may seek out other opportunities for growth and development
|Higher levels of engagement as employees feel supported in their roles
|Lower levels of engagement as employees may feel unsupported and disengaged from their work
|Employees have higher levels of skill and knowledge, leading to higher productivity and improved performance
|Employees may lack the necessary skills and knowledge to perform their roles effectively, leading to lower productivity and poor performance
|Encourages innovation and creativity as employees are given opportunities to learn and apply new skills
|Less emphasis on innovation and creativity, leading to stagnant practices and a lack of growth
|Promotes a culture of continuous improvement and learning
|May have a culture that resists change and is focused on maintaining the status quo
|Higher levels of job satisfaction as employees feel invested in and supported
|Lower levels of job satisfaction as employees may feel undervalued and unsupported in their roles
Overall, organizations that invest in the development and training of their staff tend to have higher levels of employee retention, engagement, skill level, innovation, and job satisfaction. They also tend to promote a culture of continuous improvement and growth. In contrast, organizations that do not prioritize employee development and training may struggle with retention, engagement, skill level, and innovation, and may have a stagnant company culture.
Employability and labor market changes driven by technological change during Covid 19
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the pace of technological change in the labor market, which has had a significant impact on employability. According to a survey conducted by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) in the UK, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the labor market, including changes driven by technological change. Here are a few key figures and examples:
- Increased demand for digital skills: According to the CIPD survey, 54% of organizations reported an increase in demand for digital skills since the start of the pandemic. This has led to an increased emphasis on digital upskilling and reskilling, as well as a need for workers who are able to adapt to changing work environments. For example, companies such as Amazon and Tesco have hired thousands of workers to meet the increased demand for online shopping and delivery services.
- Shift in the nature of work: The CIPD survey found that 37% of organizations had increased their use of technology to manage and monitor remote workers. This has led to a greater emphasis on tasks that require human skills, such as creativity, problem-solving, and emotional intelligence. For example, some healthcare organizations have used telemedicine to provide remote consultations and support for patients, requiring healthcare workers to develop new communication and technical skills.
- Changing industries: According to the CIPD survey, the hospitality and retail sectors have been the most affected by the pandemic, with many businesses forced to close or reduce operations. In contrast, industries such as healthcare and logistics have experienced an increase in demand, leading to a shift in the types of jobs that are available. For example, delivery companies such as UPS and DHL have seen an increase in demand for their services, leading to an increase in job opportunities for drivers and logistics workers.
- Need for reskilling and upskilling: According to the CIPD survey, 53% of organizations have increased investment in training and development since the start of the pandemic. This has created opportunities for workers to reskill and upskill in order to remain employable. For example, some companies have provided training programs to help employees develop digital skills, such as data analysis and online communication.
Overall, the CIPD survey highlights the significant impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the labor market, including changes driven by technological change. The shift towards remote work, increased use of digital tools, and changes in demand for different types of jobs have all affected employability. However, the emphasis on reskilling and upskilling presents opportunities for workers to adapt to the changing labor market and develop new skills that are in demand.
|Impact on employment
|The damage from Covid 19 in labour market remains unclear; However, research suggests that workers without a University qualification are now 27-37%, less likely to be in work 3 years from now! This creates a high risk of unemployment for those workers who lost their jobs during Covid 19;
|The UK has one of the highest skills mismatches in the OECD, with 40% of workers in jobs which they were either underqualified or overqualified before Covid 19;
|Impact on remote work
|During Covid 19, firms still trading had about 50% of their staff working remotely in UK;
|In these firms, the speed of technology and digital adoption increased for customers by about 5 years in 8 weeks!
How might jobs and skills transformation affect your graduate employability?
|Basis for Transformation
|Ways it May Affect Graduate Employability
|1. Increased demand for digital skills, such as data analysis, programming, and digital marketing.
2. Shift in the nature of work, with a greater emphasis on tasks that require human skills, such as creativity, problem-solving, and emotional intelligence.
3. Need for reskilling and upskilling in order to remain employable.
|1. Changes in demand for different types of jobs may affect the availability of graduate-level positions.
2. Potential for increased competition for jobs.
3. Need for flexibility and adaptability in job search and career planning.
|1. Disruption to traditional job roles and industries may require graduates to consider alternative career paths.
2. Need for upskilling and reskilling to adapt to changing job markets.
3. Potential for increased competition for positions in certain industries.
|Social and Environmental Changes
|1. Emphasis on social responsibility and sustainability may lead to increased demand for graduates with relevant skills.
2. Need for graduates to be aware of and adaptable to changing social and environmental factors.
3. Potential for increased competition for jobs in certain socially and environmentally conscious industries.
The table above outlines how jobs and skills transformation in areas such as technological advancements, economic changes, industry disruption, and social and environmental changes may affect graduate employability. These transformations may create new opportunities for graduates with in-demand skills, but also require flexibility and adaptability to remain competitive in the job market.
The Line manager’s role in coaching their teams
Coaching is a form of developmental activity that involves one-on-one interaction between a coach and a coachee, with the goal of improving the coachee’s performance, skills, and knowledge. The coach provides support, guidance, and feedback to the coachee, helping them to identify their strengths and weaknesses and to develop strategies for improving their performance.
According to Torrington et al. (2017), line managers play an important role in coaching their teams. Line managers are typically responsible for managing the day-to-day activities of their team members, and coaching is one way in which they can help their team members to develop their skills and knowledge. Here are a few ways in which line managers can use coaching to support their teams:
- Setting goals: Line managers can work with their team members to set goals and objectives for their work. By setting clear and measurable goals, team members can focus their efforts on achieving specific outcomes, and the line manager can provide guidance and support to help them reach their goals.
- Providing feedback: Line managers can provide regular feedback to their team members on their performance, highlighting areas where they are doing well and areas where they need to improve. By providing constructive feedback, the line manager can help team members to develop their skills and knowledge.
- Coaching for development: Line managers can use coaching to help their team members to develop specific skills or knowledge areas. For example, a line manager may identify that a team member needs to improve their communication skills, and may work with them to develop strategies for improving their communication.
- Supporting career development: Line managers can use coaching to support the career development of their team members. By helping team members to identify their career goals and develop plans for achieving them, line managers can demonstrate their commitment to their team members’ professional development.
Overall, coaching is an important tool for line managers to support the development of their teams. By providing support, guidance, and feedback to their team members, line managers can help them to develop their skills and knowledge, and to achieve their professional goals.
|The line managers role in learning and development has increased with the devolution of HRM responsibilities to them.
|Coaching is an informal approach to development conducted by the line manager. Coaching involves a line manager asking a team member questions, actively listening, encouraging and giving the trainee constructive feedback.
|Coaching can be remedial to help a team member improve their weakness in performance or proactive to help team members develop their strengths and/or potential.
|Line managers as coaches can work with trainees, helping them to engage in a wider range of tasks and to learn from experience.
|Skilled coaches adapt their style to suit the trainees’ needs, directive at first moving to non-directive.
Training Needs Analysis (TNA)
Training Needs Analysis (TNA) is a process of identifying the gap between the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required by employees to perform their job effectively and the actual knowledge, skills, and attitudes possessed by employees. TNA helps to identify areas where training is needed and to develop appropriate training programs.
Stewart (1999) proposed three approaches to TNA:
- Comprehensive analysis: This approach involves a full analysis of the job, including the tasks and activities involved, as well as the knowledge, skills, and attitudes (KSA) required for each task. This approach is suitable for jobs that are well-defined and have clear performance standards. By conducting a comprehensive analysis, trainers can identify the specific areas where employees need to improve their knowledge, skills, and attitudes.
- Key task analysis: This approach involves identifying the key tasks that are essential for job performance and analyzing these tasks. This approach is suitable for complex jobs that require a high degree of employee discretion, such as professional jobs. By focusing on the key tasks, trainers can identify the specific knowledge, skills, and attitudes that employees need to perform these tasks effectively.
- Problem-centered analysis: This approach focuses on aspects of the job that are problematic for job holders and/or managers. By identifying these problems, trainers can develop training programs that address the specific issues that employees are facing. This approach is useful for identifying training needs that may not be immediately apparent through a comprehensive or key task analysis.
Overall, the approach to TNA will depend on the nature of the job and the specific training needs of employees. By using a combination of approaches, trainers can develop effective training programs that address the specific knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for job performance.
Training Needs Analysis (TNA) for Line Manager
Training Needs Analysis (TNA) is a critical process that helps to identify the training gaps between the current performance and desired performance of employees. For line managers, the TNA process can be conducted by following these steps:
- Define the boundaries of TNA: The first step is to define the scope of the TNA. This could be a department, section, or unit within the organization, a specific group or category of staff such as chefs or waiters, or a particular process such as food preparation or serving. Defining the boundaries of the TNA will help to focus the analysis on the specific area where training is needed.
- Gather data for TNA: The next step is to gather data for the TNA. This can be done through observations, brainstorming, and discussions with employees who are performing the work. Line managers can also review performance data and identify areas where there are gaps between the desired performance and the current performance of employees.
- Identify training gap during TNA: The final step is to identify the training gaps that exist between the current performance and desired performance of employees. This may involve identifying specific skills, knowledge, or attitudes that are lacking among employees, and developing training programs to address these gaps. Line managers can work with employees to develop individual development plans that focus on the areas where training is needed.
Overall, conducting a TNA for line managers can help to identify the specific areas where training is needed, and to develop targeted training programs that address the skills, knowledge, and attitudes required for job performance. By investing in training and development, line managers can help to improve the performance and productivity of their teams, and to support the overall goals of the organization.
Emotional labour : Gendered and raced competencies in service work?
Skills are socially constructed so, people of different gender, race and class, can be unfairly labelled as having less or different skills compared to others in the labour market (Grugulis, 2007)
- Soft skills-team working, communication and problem-solving are important skills and competencies in the service sector i.e. sales, nursing, cabin crew. However, this service or product transaction process with customers can include ‘emotional labour’ where the worker must present ‘appropriate’ emotions which they may not feel towards the customer . For example, being shouted at by a customer and having to smile (Hoscshild, 1983)
- In client facing roles where the service or product is delivered by a person they becomes part of the transaction process (Noon and Blyton, 2008)
Also, soft-skills can be stereotyped according to gender, race and class . For example , Nurses who must manage their emotional labour to present a detached professional image to patients and their families despite how they feel (Gruglis, 2007, Bolton, 2001)
Emotional labor refers to the management of emotions and feelings in the workplace, especially in jobs that require interaction with customers or clients. In service work, emotional labor is often performed by employees who must manage their emotions to meet the expectations of their employers and customers.
Research suggests that emotional labor is gendered and raced, meaning that women and people of color are often expected to perform emotional labor in ways that differ from those expected of men and white people. For example, women are often expected to display emotions such as warmth, empathy, and caring in their interactions with customers, while men are expected to display emotions such as confidence and authority. Similarly, people of color may be expected to perform emotional labor that reflects racial stereotypes, such as being subservient or exotic.
These gendered and raced expectations can create a double bind for employees who must navigate both the expectations of their employers and the expectations of their customers. For example, women who do not display the expected emotional labor may be seen as cold or unapproachable, while women who display too much emotional labor may be seen as emotional or irrational. Similarly, people of color who do not conform to racial stereotypes may be seen as unauthentic or not fitting in, while those who conform too much may be seen as reinforcing stereotypes.
Overall, the gendered and raced nature of emotional labor highlights the importance of recognizing and challenging these expectations in service work. Employers should strive to create a workplace culture that values authenticity and allows employees to express their emotions in ways that feel natural to them, rather than conforming to gendered or racial expectations. Additionally, training programs can be developed to help employees navigate the challenges of emotional labor and to support them in developing the competencies necessary for effective service w