Do it yourself – How promoting self-skilling can benefit your business and your employees

By ACM Team on

Do you know how skilled your employees are when it comes to basic computing tasks? Do you know what support they need? 

It’s a difficult aspect of work to measure and may not seem important when your business is running smoothly. However, the introduction of new technology can quickly bring issues to the surface. Helping employees understand why they should use technology and providing ways for them to enhance their skills at their own pace helps overcome adoption challenges and enhance skills, leading to better business outcomes. 

The Skills Gap Impact

It might surprise you to learn that an estimated 16% of the UK population, or around nine million people, are unable to access the internet without assistance. Almost 12 million people are unable to shop, bank or communicate online. People not knowing how to complete tasks that are second nature to most of us might come as a shock, but this digital skills gap extends to your business too. 

A lack of computer literacy limits the effectiveness of employees and the business outcomes they support.  

As people were forced to work from home during the pandemic, skills gaps like these were brought into clearer focus. For example, it’s believed that 13.5 million people are incapable of using video calling apps without support. Not good news for businesses relying on video collaboration tools to facilitate remote and hybrid working scenarios.  

New Tech. New Challenges.

When a company deploys new software and services like Microsoft 365, the expectation is that it will ‘just work’, with all the headline benefits in terms of productivity, efficiency and organisation naturally occurring after a short bedding-in period. In reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth.  

Silversands understands that technology investment is only the beginning of the story. It’s why, in addition to our technical teams, our professional adoption and change management (ACM) practice identifies the skills gaps present in an organisation and helps it align its new technology with defined business goals.  

A major part of this work involves empowering employees to understand why rather than how to use specific tools. This context not only helps staff adopt technology faster but improves engagement by enabling them to be more self-sufficient. At the start of our ACM engagements, we gather as much information as possible in terms of knowledge and skills, as well as studying usage statistics to define parameters for change that can then be effectively measured. 

A Force for Change 

To add further value to our adoption and change management practice, we have brought Nulia Works into our portfolio. Nulia Works is a first-of its-kind solution to help employees develop skills and optimise their understanding and use of Microsoft 365. It enhances the way employees engage with technology by gathering and evaluating usage data gathered by Microsoft, making recommendations to employees about the most relevant skills and knowledge development available to them. A key aspect of the platform is that it offers resources and personalised guidance in different formats – step-by-step, story, infographic, or video – to fit with the different ways that people like to learn. To further promote ongoing skills development, Nulia Works tracks the employee’s progress, offering them points, badges and encouragement to move through various skills levels from User to Master.

 

Even technically proficient users can struggle with new technology. Without guidance, they can easily become overwhelmed by the wealth of new features available and find it hard to determine what to use and when. As a result, many simply avoid using the new tools and stick to what they know, impacting ROI in the process. 

The same is true for those lacking skills, many of whom understand that their technical deficiency is holding them back. More than half of UK employees, for instance, think developing their digital skills will be important to future employability. Key to overcoming these challenges is supporting employees to advance their own skills, and Silversands, together with Nulia Works, enables them to do so, helping them understand both how and why different tools and features should be used. 

As Microsoft updates and adds new applications to the Microsoft 365 suite, we adapt our approach accordingly, and Nulia Works evolves too, ensuring our customers are up to date on required user knowledge as they improve user adoption of Microsoft 365. Not only does our partnership with Nulia enhance our ACM offering, but it helps organisations like yours enable employees to continually enhance their skills, helping them improve their prospects and benefit your organisation.  

As a result, you can ensure that all your employees not only have the skills to do their jobs effectively but develop the digital skills necessary for life in the 21st Century.  

Download our eBook to find out more about these skills-related challenges and what steps can be taken to deliver lasting impact.

The digital skills gap

How Silversands can help?

Silversands is a Microsoft Gold Partner and specialises in Microsoft 365 delivered across Azure cloud and hybrid IT environments. As well as technical consultancy we also have a professional Adoption and Change Management practice. We provide help with user adoption audits, knowledge and learning plans, communications plans, privacy impact assessments and equality impact assessments.

Quarterly, we produce eBooks, whitepapers or run online events, which provide an opportunity to learn directly from our consultants. Visit our events page for more information.

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