Table of content:

  1. What is Reskilling
  2. What are the objectives of Reskilling?
  3. What is Upskilling?
  4. What are the objectives of Upskilling?
  5. Why is it important to develop the skills of your employees?
  6. How to set up a good Reskilling and Upskilling plan?

The world of work has been turned upside down by the covid crisis and by technological advances.

This digital revolution is accompanied by a war for talent and a lack of skilled labor. Your company must innovate, and you must adapt your strategies and models to these changes.

To maintain your competitive edge and to prevent your employees from leaving your company, it has become important to develop and train them continuously.

Indeed, due to the constant mutation of the working world and technologies, the skills of your employees become quickly obsolete. Your employees must be flexible and versatile, and they are often required to change activities.

To address these issues, new practices have emerged. These are new training methods called reskilling and upskilling.

What do reskilling and upskilling mean? What is the difference between the two concepts? Why are upskilling and reskilling important?

What is reskilling?

Reskilling is a process that allows you to train your current employees to adapt to another position within your company. Your employees will be able to acquire new skills through training to do a new job. This is what happens, for example, in the case of professional retraining.

Reskilling emphasises the motivation and the personality (soft skills) of the employees. It gives priority to the “savoir-être” (Know-how-to-be) over the “savoir-faire” (know-how). The technical skills (hard skills) are learned directly in the company.

What are the objectives of reskilling?

  • Create more versatile employees
  • Find an internal solution to the lack of qualified manpower
  • Customise employees to a certain task or position
  • Ensure that your employees have the skills required for their position
  • Open recruitment to different profiles that can bring a fresh perspective

Hiring an employee who does not have the necessary technical skills by using reskilling can be a gamble in the future. But it is often a winner in the current context of talent shortage. But only if the reskilling is well organised with a clear program and training.

What is upskilling?

Upskilling is a process that allows your employees to learn new skills or teach them new skills.

You enable your employees to learn continuously within your company so that they develop new skills and expertise. This allows them to remain operational, gain in performance and open up new opportunities.

Upskilling can be accompanied by a change in the employee’s job, or by the improvement of an existing process.

What are the objectives of upskilling?

  • Optimise the performance of your employees
  • Create more specialised employees for the same job
  • To adapt to technological changes and increase the reactivity of your company
  • Renew and improve the knowledge of your employees
  • Increase your employees’ engagement rate
  • Decrease turnover
  • Decrease the costs of new hires by training your current employees

To implement an upskilling plan, it is important that you have a long-term vision, so that you can anticipate the future of your company and the market. But also one of your customers.

Why is it important to develop the skills of your employees? How to deal with the obsolescence of skills?

According to a report by the WEF (World Economic Forum) called “The Future of Jobs Report 2020“, by 2025, almost 50% of all workers will need to be retrained and about 40% of companies expect workers to need reskilling. According to the same report, 94% of business leaders expect their employees to learn new skills on the job.

It is therefore important to take control of your employees’ knowledge and training. To develop their ability to learn, think, and interact (soft skills). To update their knowledge of software, methodologies, and techniques (hard skills). Moreover, 68% of employees prefer to learn on the job.

The same report highlights the most important skills that professionals will need to master by 2025:

most important skills

We note that all of these skills are soft skills. In fact, according to a LinkedIn study, the people interviewed indicated that soft skills training is their number one priority.

If you want to know more about the difference between Hard skills and Soft skills, you can read our previous article: Job skills: Hard, Soft, Mad – What is the difference?

How to set up a good reskilling and upskilling plan?

  • Study your company’s needs in order to establish which new positions and skills you will need
  • Clearly define the key skills for each position in question
  • Take stock of your current employees to see who will need Upskilling and who will need Reskilling
  • Define which training to choose for which skills
  • Define a skills development plan and a personal development plan for your employees
  • Take the time to implement these strategies with your teams and especially give your employees time to learn them


In an ever-changing world, knowing how to value your employees by training them and allowing them to increase their skills can make a difference.

Implementing an upskilling and reskilling plan requires financial costs and a long-term investment. But you will gain by reducing your recruitment costs by relying on your current employees.

Prefer internal mobility of your employees rather than external recruitment. This will also allow you to increase employee retention as well as their motivation and commitment.

In fact, according to LinkedIn, 94% of employees say they would stay with their company longer if it invested in their careers. 


We can help you identify which skills (hard and soft) you will need for your next job and which ones to (re)work on.

If you also need help or advice with your external recruitment and to define which skills to expect from candidates, please CONTACT US. Our consultants are specialists in their industries and know perfectly which are the different qualities required for each type of job.



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