Continuity planning may not be the most glamorous business topic. It is an important one though, as effective continuity planning helps mitigate risks to your business, whatever form they may take.
In effect, a business continuity plan is a risk assessment of your business. It is when you identify the processes and areas of your company that are vulnerable in the event of one of the above areas. And then you put a plan in place to strengthen them.
Skills development & business continuity
As every company’s biggest asset is their talent, one of the most effective ways to ensure business continuity is having a firm grip on their skills. If a disaster struck an area in your organization, for instance, you must diminish the risk quickly and minimize any threats of future disruption. The only way to do this is by putting sufficiently skilled staff members in the right place. Knowing your workforce’s skills makes it much easier to put an effective crash team in place when you need one.
Business continuity planning is easy to do in tandem with workforce management. When you are mapping and forecasting your staffing levels against previous or current trends, you should also consider how to mitigate risk in case of an event.
How skills development proved vital in 2020
Disaster struck last year, and it caught all of us by surprise. According to a survey conducted by the International Labour Organization, less than half of enterprises had a business plan in place before the COVID-19 outbreak. The percentage of small companies with a business continuity plan was even less: 33 percent. Industries were quick to address this. During 2020, 78 percent of enterprises made changes to their operations or their service delivery.
The spike in training activities (38 percent) in 2020 highlights how much of an asset a company’s talent is. To mitigate risk, businesses were driving training programs and upskilling and reskilling their employees at an unprecedented rate. Because these skills developments were necessary for business needs it was vital to keep a keen eye on this progress. Leaders were not only tasked with handling workforces with new and improved skills, but they also had to ensure they were always placed accordingly. Tracking skills development, then, proved to be paramount for survival in the face of disaster.
Why business continuity planning needs to stay at the forefront of agendas
Business continuity planning needs to be in place to protect from any risk. And these next few years are going to be filled with change as we move further into Industry 4:0. The rise of automation and the increase of smart features is exciting for the industry and filled with opportunities. It could also lead to risks, so good continuity planning is just as important as ever.
Employees’ skills are forecasted to change drastically over the next five years as the working landscape continues to shift. If these skills developments are not tracked properly, businesses run the risk of developing skills gaps. They run the risk of having skills that do not align with their business needs. According to a Mckinsey survey, large proportions of businesses have already spotted current or potential skills gaps in their company.
You can find out more about how to conduct a skills gap analysis. And learn how it can improve your business growth.
Skills data management: have you got it?
Data now reigns as the defining feature of our age. The digital economy that drove growth for the past decade has completed its term. Surpassing it is the new business currency: data.
This shift comes with great opportunities to optimize, streamline, and develop each area of business. It also benefits business continuity planning, as there is now an abundance of data to help protect from risks.
Skills data is no exception: whether that is at the hiring stage when you are recruiting the best talent for your teams; or internally when you plan your day-to-day operations and gear toward future objectives. There is now a heap of skills data to help guide your decisions. Vulnerabilities and weak spots are so much easier to spot now. That is, of course, if you have got good skills management in place.
Having all your data in one centralized hub is such an important element of skills management. If it is not, and you are running multiple spreadsheets, it can be so easy to lose track of who is skilled for what (as I am sure you know!). As skills are not fixed and are expected to change a great deal in these coming years, you need to get on top of them. Now.
Why Excel is no longer the best option for your data management
Microsoft Excel used to be the go-to tool for all data management – employees’ skills data included. It is obvious why: Excel is simple to use, readily available and compatible with most cloud-based storage solutions. Sadly though, however great it is for rudimentary data management, it has become slightly dated.
In today’s data economy, most users have outgrown Excel’s intended functions. As we need data at our fingertips immediately, Excel cannot keep up with the demand. Skills have continued to develop, and Excel has not. The software provided by Microsoft is now unable to handle the sheer quantity and sophistication of today’s data. Those still using it have likely had to resort to using multiple spreadsheets to accommodate this increase in data. Not only can this be inconvenient for users, but it can also lead to mismanagement of the data. When it comes to continuity planning, this can be fatal.
Managing your employee skills data with AG5
If you want to capitalize on your employees’ skills data, mitigate risks, and monitor all developments, it is important to have powerful skills management software. You need software that can handle this vast increase of data and that can present it in a clear and usable way. AG5 Skills Intelligence Software is what you need.
AG5 helps clients to visualize and close their skills gaps by providing clear, concise, and audit-proof skills matrices that make workforce management easy and convenient. AG5 also helps to ensure that businesses remain futureproofed and ready to mitigate any risks that could arise. Having your skills data in a centralized, secure, and easily shareable system will help with your business continuity planning every time.