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How to easily assess employee skills to know what to improve

If you want your company to prosper, first your team has to prosper. At least that’s a gist of the idea that you have to invest in your employees if you want them to return the favor with better performance.

That’s true, but how to know what to do? “Investing in people” is quite a broad definition. Even if we add “invest in improving people’s skills”. Everyone has different skills and then different ideas of how skilled they are. Finally, they have different desires of what skills to improve.

In order to get maximum ROI first you need to know the answers to several questions. Then you can easily see in what skills for which people you can invest to improve. Thus, you will get the most – employees with improved skills, better performance and higher motivation. But, if you get it wrong, you risk of achieving the exact opposite.

So, before you start organizing trainings, you need to know exactly what they have to be. Of course, your starting point are the needs of the organization. You (should) know very well what platforms and technologies are used and will be used so top skills for them are vital. You also know what types of skills are needed for each team/position. But do the employees actually have and use these skills?

Usually HRs do classic tests to see what the knowledge level is. But that doesn’t really give the true state of things in the real day-to-day work. It’s a nice starting point, but definitely not one to base the final decision on.

The second step would be to ask for feedback. This can be two-fold. First, ask employees to perform a self-assessment and you will see what they actually think about themselves vs. the performance. Second, simply ask them for additional feedback on what they experience most difficulties with, what they would want to improve about their skills and what courses might interest them.

Also, check with the real world. Seek some feedback from the clients. This is especially important if your IT team’s work and efforts are outwards and pointed to clients with products and services. Your clients will paint you a realistic picture of what they want, need and see that can be improved.

Even if your IT team’s work is mostly internal, this has an effect on your end services, products and efficiency. So, it’s again a good idea to ask your clients for feedback. It may turn out you and your team’s needs are not quite in line with your client’s need as you think.

So, when you have all of this in check, then you can have a decent idea of what your employees skills are and how to they actually work out in the real world. Then you can start organizing proper trainings that will add value to your employees’ skills and performance. If you still can’t decide, drop us a line. We can help you out.