Upskilling and All You Need to Know

upskilling-for-job-seekers

If you find yourself job hunting during the coronavirus pandemic or even once the job market settles, you’re not alone. Now is the perfect time to upskill for both you and your resume. As a professional, it’s important to remember to continue learning and investing in yourself.

A key reason it’s essential to develop your professional abilities is due to prevalent skills gaps. The term “skills gap” refers to the gap between the expertise that employers rely upon in their employees, and the skills that job seekers possess. This mismatch makes it challenging for individuals to find jobs and also for employers to find suitably trained workers.

As of 2019, nearly 80% of companies were undergoing digital transformation. Industries including, finance, retail, manufacturing, and even law, are experiencing a new demand for technical skills. On the flip side, the workforce hasn’t yet caught up with the growing demand for new digital skills. To borrow from Wayne Gretzky, upskilling is instilling competencies that enable you (as a professional employee) to “skate to where the puck will be.” Investment and agility are the names of the upskilling game.

Consider the rewards of taking time to invest and build upon your existing skills to set yourself up for better opportunities in tomorrow’s workforce – become even more agile and competitive. Here are our top resources (FREE and paid subscriptions) for adding to your professional toolkit — everything you need to know to succeed.

LinkedIn Learning.

LinkedIn Learning is one of the best online offerings with more than 5,000 creative skills, business development, and technology-focused courses. Dive into expert-led video courses, FREE for your first month. Following, you can register for a monthly or annual subscription, based on your professional goals and desires. Here are a few of the critical benefits of LinkedIn Learning:

  1. LinkedIn thoroughly vets all instructors to ensure instruction by credible experts with appropriate credentials (providing assurance that you’re learning from some of the best out there).
  2. The educational courses cover both micro and macro learning. The micro approach lets you jump into bite-sized videos to learn new skills and not get too overwhelmed. Or you can go for macro learning to focus on your career development.
  3. LinkedIn Learning provides students with interaction and social learning capabilities. For example, you can interact with experts or colleagues who have previously taken the same course. This option provides you with first-hand insight on the course, along with the opportunity to ask questions or discuss the course’s content. (We’ll touch more how to network your way to success in our next blog post!)

Google Digital Garage.

Launched in 2015, Google Digital Garage offers a whole host of free courses on today’s most in-demand skills, including data and tech, digital marketing, and career development. The platform enables anyone to learn the ever-growing fundaments of online marketing to help develop a business or apply skills within a career. Here are a few benefits of utilizing Google Digital Garage courses:

  1. As a starting point for developing a variety of digital skills, Google Digital Garage is a valuable and FREE learning tool that everyone can access.
  2. The platform incorporates a variety of how-to videos, graphics, questions, quizzes, and more to aid in engagement and hit all types of learning styles.
  3. Upon completing a course, you receive a certificate of completion from Google, which you can add to your licenses and certifications section on your LinkedIn profile and resume. It highlights your willingness to grow and improve while showing your skills and knowledge of the subject. (We’ll touch more on this in an upcoming blog post about how to optimize your LinkedIn profile – stay tuned!)

Udemy.

With nearly 100,000 available courses, Udemy offers instruction by expert educators on your schedule while you learn at your own pace. Online courses include IT and software, personal growth, marketing, and so much more! A few benefits of utilizing Udemy for upskilling include:

  1. Udemy is undoubtedly one of the most affordable online course platforms. These offerings range from free to paid. It’s worth noting that Udemy offers many discounts for their courses, making some incredibly affordable at a rate as low as $10.
  2. Udemy instructors are generally business professionals who have practical, in-the-field knowledge to share with their students. Many of the instructors’ courses come with instructional videos to promote proprietary products, such as books or consulting services. Also, enrollment in a course may entitle students to exclusive promotions and discounts.
  3. Udemy maintains a consumer-friendly, add-to-cart, purchase ability for all courses (think about the ease of Amazon). Udemy’s courses are purchased on an ad-hoc basis – aka no subscription required.

While investment (both time and money) and agility are the names of the upskilling game, it’s important to remember the big picture. Investing in yourself to help build a more robust, more competitive skillset will only set you – and your resume – up for success in the long run. Upskilling is also about choice and opportunity. Don’t let an opportunity pass you by just because you don’t yet have a particular skill. Take that next step!

Happy upskilling!

Follow along for our next blog in this series where we’ll take a deep dive into networking and our top 4 networking outlets to grow your connections!

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