Investing in upskilling your workforce may be the difference between winning and losing the greater war for talent. Many South African organisations are experiencing a training/skill disconnect within their teams. While a major percentage of South African professionals have a desire to upskill, only 4% feel their employers view upskilling as essential.
It’s time for you to bridge that gap by making the investment in upskilling training.

What is Upskilling?

Upskilling is giving your employees access to improving their skills. It can be seen as a form of training to help an employee enhance or introduce new skills into their work, through courses, mentorship or hands-on learning.

Depending on the employee, the goal of upskilling could be to:

  • Improve job performance
  • Prepare for a promotion
  • Update their knowledge of a topic, system or process

The Upside To Upskilling: How Do Organisations Benefit?

Upskilling is all about creating a more sustainable workplace. By investing in the employees you have now, you’re paving the way for a higher-performing and more valuable workforce in the future.

Here’s how your organisation can benefit from upskilling training:

1. You Become A Talent Magnet
Today’s workers want to continually learn and improve—and they expect their organisations to provide high-quality development opportunities for them to do so.

This desire for learning spans generations, too. Millennials are the most willing to upskill, with 98% of them eager to learn new skills. Gen X and Baby Boomers want to upskill their digital skills, while Gen Z and Millennials are looking to improve their interpersonal skills.

By investing in and promoting your upskilling training, you can attract talented workers who are eager to learn.

2. You Create A Culture of Learning
When a workplace has a true culture of learning, the people there don’t have to be forced to learn—they want to learn. You can create this culture by providing upskilling training, which helps employees develop a growth mindset and habit of continuous learning.

To further develop a culture of learning in your workplace…

Make upskilling a business priority, not just an HR initiative.
Increase your team’s accessibility and awareness of learning and development programs by promoting them in your internal communications, marketing and job adverts.
Reward and recognise those who complete upskilling programs.
Provide clear career progression frameworks for employees so they see where learning can take them.

3. It Gets Your Team Future-Ready
Upskilling helps your team get comfortable with the future of work, whether they’ll be working with new technologies or adapting to new ways of thinking.
On the Future Skills Centre podcast, Sashya D’Souza shared the four types of skills organisations should cultivate to make their workplace future-ready:

- Human experience skills such as emotional intelligence, which workers can use to better understand their customers.
- Reimagination skills that allow for creative thinking and innovative solutions.
- Pivoting skills that include learning agility and adaptability.
- Future currency skills such as digital and data acumen.

4. You’ll Retain Skilled Employees For Longer
Skilled, high-morale employees are hard to replace—which means you want to keep them around. If those employees aren’t given the mental stimulation or learning opportunities they desire, their morale can wane, which leads to disengagement and, oftentimes, their resignation notice landing in your inbox.

5. You’ll Improve Customer Satisfaction
Upskilling leads to more knowledgeable and confident employees, which leads to better customer experiences. Whether your training is focused on a new product or service or on improving communication and sales, upskilling can help your client-facing employees better serve your customers.

6. It Increases Skill Relevance and Utility
Upskilling is all about making your team resilient to the future of work to improve workflows and to develop your next generation of leaders, it will help your people stay relevant and as useful as possible in an ever-changing environment.

7. You’ll Nurture In-Demand Talent
When you have upskilled employees, you don’t have to look outside of your workplace for your next hire, because you’ve already nurtured a growing pool of in-demand talent. You don’t have to rely on the job market to fill in skills gaps; instead, you have the power to build your ideal workforce from the inside.

The Focus is on optimising your "legacy of talent” with succession planning.

8. You’ll Have A More Agile And Adaptable Team
The pace of change has accelerated quickly over the years, and there’s no sign it slowing. If your team shifts from in-person to remote working (or vice-versa), how will your employees respond to that change?

Through upskilling, your team can develop the technical skills they need to stay ahead. But just as importantly, it instils in them an open, ready-to-learn mindset, so they can take on whatever new challenge comes their way.

How are the courses presented?

Face-to-face programmes will include: Available
• Comprehensive Note packs
• 4 x 3 Hr Live Online Sessions or 2 full day (face-to-face) Live Sessions*
• Interaction with the classroom facilitator via face-to-face or Google Meets
• Testing with facilitator feedback
*Course dependant

What upskilling programmes are currently available?

Finance for non-financial managers 

Course description and breakdown

The "Finance for Non-Financial Managers" program is customizable to span one, two, or three days, depending on the specific requirements of the client. Its purpose is to equip non-financial professionals with essential financial skills crucial for success in today's business environment. Participants will acquire fundamental skills in areas such as capital structure, budgeting, capital decision-making, performance analysis, enhancement of net working capital, identification and valuation of critical criteria, and the augmentation of shareholder value.

This program is well-suited for non-financial staff members seeking a heightened comprehension of the financial aspects integral to their roles, ultimately enhancing their job performance. Additionally, the program integrates business principles to enhance participants' personal financial acumen, resulting in improved personal financial matters and a heightened awareness of the need to enhance the financial situation of their respective businesses.

Key Topics Covered:

  • Grasp the fundamental principles of financial management.
  • Formulate a strategy for effective personal financial management.
  • Evaluate an organization's profitability by analyzing Statements of Comprehensive Income.
  • Understand the funding sources and utilization of funds within an organization by interpreting Statements of Financial Position.
  • Gauge an organization's fiscal well-being through the interpretation of Cash Flow Statements.
  • Assess the financial health of an organization using various financial ratios.

Module outline:

Financial Aspects of Business
 - Learn the various business structures and the advantages and disadvantages of each
organisation type.
- Review the major functions of a business organisation and the roles and responsibilities of
- Participants in the business process.
- Identify the stakeholders in a business and how each contributes to the creation of value.
- Learn about the components of working capital, the cash and operating cycles of business and
ways to reduce required cash and improve bottom-line results.
- Understand the importance of internal control.

Reporting Results
- Learn the accounting concepts for a better understanding of how accounting works.
- Describe the differences between cash and accrual accounting.
- Identify the varied uses and users of financial reports.
- Become familiar with key financial statements – Income Statements, Balance Sheets and Cash
Flow Statements.
- Understand the way events are recorded and impact financial performance.
- Learn the uses of cash flows.

Analysing Performance
- Understand the various types of ratios that can be calculated to analyse a firm’s current
performance compared to past results and industry averages.
- Learn why certain types of ratios are more important to some users of financial data.
- Identify the various cost classifications and be able to pattern their behaviour to better
understand the impact of changes on financial results.
- Learn how to calculate a firm’s break-even point and understand the benefits of such
information in budget planning.
- Understand the concept of contribution margin and learn how to convert a traditional income
statement to a contribution margin statement.

Making Capital Decisions
- Be able to define the various terms associated with capital projects.
- Understand the different types of capital projects that can be undertaken and the opportunity
cost involved in every capital decision.
- Learn about the time value of money and the concepts of compounding and discounting cash
flows to determine optimal investment opportunities.
- Understand the risk and return trade-off, and the composition of a firm’s capital structure.
- Learn the components of capital and the term structure of interest rates.
- Learn how to calculate the initial cost amount of a project and to determine the incremental
cash flows expected to be generated by the investment.

Planning for the Future
- Learn to differentiate between budgets and business plans.
- Understand the types of budgets and the general purpose for each type.
- Learn the general principles of good budgeting.
- Be able to identify the schedules necessary for a master budget.
- Understand the purpose of pro forma financial statements.
- Develop the skills to prepare a cash budget.

Primary Competencies:

  • Proficiently manage personal finances.
  • Skillfully interpret financial statements.
  • Determine the financial health of a project, department, or company.

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