Since the pandemic, the nature of work has been changing in every direction. Jobs across a wide spectrum of industries have become more digitized, automated, and complex. As a result, employees and leaders are feeling less certain about what they bring to their roles, and many are looking to advance their skillsets for a more confident future.
According to the Schulich ExecEd 2022 Career Mobility & Skills Report, there is significant demand from employees of all levels to improve their employability with new and better skills.
Trending Job Skills: Key Findings
Of the 500 professionals, managers, and directors we surveyed across multiple industries, 79% felt that now is the perfect moment to close a skill gap, upskill, reskill, or retool their leadership knowledge.
Additionally, with 55% of respondents seeking new opportunities, organizations who ignore employees’ ambition are at high risk of losing their top talent to the competition or other industries.
To close the gap between the demand and supply of skills, organizations and their leadership team have started to analyze the skills required to perform their roles better (upskilling) and the skills they would need to satisfy a different role (reskilling).
The Most-Desired Job Skills in 2022
Upskilling, the process of learning new skills, and reskilling, the process of learning adjacent skills to do a different job—are two keywords that currently dominate the talent management space in today’s work environment.
Organizations that wish to retain their top talent need to reflect their employees’ ambitions by doubling down on talent investment. In our survey, we separated the desired skills into two categories: non-negotiables, skills that will help them perform in their jobs, and level ups, skills that will help set them apart.
Under non-negotiables, we found that the most desired skills by our respondents were focused on the interpersonal. These include “soft skills” based on emotional intelligence, like effective communication and collaboration, or learning how to handle conflict and other fairness issues. Without these, even standard performance becomes challenging for employees.
The level ups, on the other hand, were valued by respondents as skills that could propel themselves and their team forward. Because they can help professionals distinguish themselves from peers, level up skills are more future-focused than non-negotiables.
Some examples of level up skills include strategic thinking, risk assessment and management, or learning to use data in the right contexts. Without these skills, managers, senior leaders, and their teams have a harder time accelerating growth, making organizational objectives more challenging and time-consuming. For early-career professionals, these skills play an even larger role as they look for ways to contribute meaningfully to their teams without constantly relying on authority.
Ultimately, our study reveals that the current landscape demands a combination of both non-negotiable and level up skills. Only by securing both can employees and leaders feel confident in achieving higher levels of performance and to accelerate their career growth.
As we continue to explore our return-to-work attitudes, employees and employers will be presented with new opportunities for career mobility and skill development. While some uncertainty still lingers around the future of work, finding the right partner to help you and your team develop new skills will be the best path forward for any organization.
Get The Full Report
Learn more about trending job skills and figure out your next steps with our To-Do lists for employees and employers. Read the Schulich ExecEd Career Mobility & Skills Report 2022