Top 2023 Talent Management Trends

As 2023 begins, carrying the aftereffects of the Great Resignation, the emotional weight of the return to the office post-COVID, and the looming shadow of an anticipated recession, HR professionals worldwide are bracing themselves for a workplace of a different dynamic. The trends this year show talent management strategies that are more attuned to the new shape of the workforce and its rising sentiments.

In this article, we explore the most striking features of the new shape of the workforce and how HR professionals worldwide are adapting their talent management strategies this year to thrive in a relentlessly changing landscape.

Talent Management Trends 2023

The Face of the Workforce of 2023

The 47 million resignations that marked ‘The Great Resignation’ and the 64% of employees reporting they would leave their employers if forced to return to the office full-time are but symptoms of a changing dynamic. The power imbalance between employers and employees is shifting, giving more agency to employees. This new power structure is driven by the below forces.

1). Scarcity in Specialized Talent

According to a Korn Ferry report, by 2030, more than 85 million jobs could go unfilled because there won’t be enough skilled people to take them. And according to the World Economic Forum, 50% of employees will need re-skilling to meet tech changes by 2025. So, organizations are having a hard time hiring highly specialized talent today and, what’s even worse, it won’t get any better in the future. This trend of scarcity in specialized talent has not gone unnoticed by the workforce. This is why skilled employees know they are hard to find and are putting in the effort to re-negotiate the social contract of work.

2). A Much Better Informed Workforce

In the good old days, employers could maintain salary and career trajectory confidentiality, now this confidentiality is a thing of the past. With the huge amount of data available on job boards, professional networking platforms, salary comparison websites, etc., and with the open sharing of cross-generational career experiences on social media platforms, the workforce of today is a much better-informed talent group. They are aware of their industry average compensation, their skill benchmarks, and the reputations of potential employers. In a nutshell, they have at their fingertips access to information that they can effectively use to negotiate better compensation and career growth opportunities for themselves.

3). A Workforce with Different Priorities

Research by PwC shows that when asked to rank what matters the most in their current jobs, ‘meaning in day-to-day work’ aka. ‘purpose’ tops the ranks of 83% of surveyed employees. Moreover, in a survey done by McKinsey, flexible work arrangements have been listed as one of the top priorities of employees when deciding to join an organization. With this new focus on purpose and well-being, organizations must adapt their employee experiences and employer value propositions to rise to the new priorities of the modern workforce.

4). A New Employer-Employee Relationship

The open and transparent access to information and opportunity has led to a shift in the nature of the employer-employee relationship. It is no longer a long-term exclusive relationship as it used to be. With 50% of millennials and 70% of Gen Zs reporting having side hustles alongside their full-time jobs and with the average number of years that employees spend in the same organization falling down to 4.3 years, employers must expect a more transient, non-exclusive relationship with employees, especially highly specialized talent. Only organizations that can adjust to these shifting dynamics will succeed in attracting and retaining the right talent.

5). The Rise of the Contingent Worker

Along the same lines, employers must also be open to tapping into the hidden talent of the contingent workforce to fulfill their talent needs. Getting contingent workers on board is no longer going to be an exception, but the rule, with experts recommending a 70/30 split between FTEs and contingent employees in your organization. Contingent workers are highly skilled professionals who work freelance or on a project basis to enjoy the flexibility and freedom that comes with contingent work. Therefore, if you want to succeed with this workforce, you must adjust your talent management strategy to accommodate their priorities.

6). The Boundaryless Organization

With the end of the pandemic, more organizations are inviting employees back to the office. However, research shows that 64% of employees would leave their organizations if a hybrid option is not available. With these clear employee priorities, companies like Shopify and Buffer are now flaunting work-from-anywhere-anytime work arrangements and 63% of high-growth organizations are already offering their employees hybrid work options. In the past years, many efforts have been made to maintain employee productivity within the new boundaryless organization. This year, the focus is on how to do it while building and maintaining the organizational culture and office friendships. Many organizations are experimenting with many solutions to discover what works.

Talent Management Trends 2023

How Talent Management is Responding

With this new face of the workforce in 2023, the organizations that are ahead of the curve are revisiting their talent management strategies and re-adjusting them to meet the demands of a new workforce dynamic. Here are some of the biggest changes that these organizations are making.

1). Flexible Talent Acquisition

Talent acquisition is getting more flexible as rivalry on attracting highly specialized talent and skilled professionals brews. Organizations are offering more roles on a contingent basis and are tapping into the global workforce. In fact, the Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA) reported in 2021 that there are 52 million contingent workers in the U.S. alone, representing 35% of the talent force. Moreover, talent acquisition is focused on re-designing the employer value proposition to offer higher, more equitable compensation and benefits, more flexible and hybrid work arrangements, employee experiences focused on wellbeing, and career development and growth opportunities.

2). A Focus on Re-Skilling & Up-Skilling

With the skill shortages of today and the future, organizations are directing their learning and development strategies toward re-skilling and up-skilling employees. In fact, research by Gartner shows that this is a top priority for 42% of HR leaders amidst fears that they may not have an explicit ‘future of work’ strategy.

3). A Focus on Career Growth

With a recent Gallup poll finding that 50% of the US workforce is ‘quiet quitting’ and the trend topping social media charts, organizations are making the shift this year to discover the true talent of their employees and re-focus on their growth and development. Talent management professionals are this year exploring ways to increase employee engagement on the job by making current work challenging and charting career paths for employees.

4). Employee Experience Front & Center

With the rising skill shortages and the new priorities of the workforce, organizations that will thrive are the ones that are re-centering the employee experience around the well-being of their employees. Creating meaningful, purposeful work, supporting work-life integration, and providing opportunities for impact are all key talent management objectives this year. Organizations that thrive are the ones that will prioritize human outcomes.

5). Making Hybrid Work

As more organizations go remote or hybrid, the question most talent management functions are now exploring is how to do it while maintaining organizational culture. Organizations are exploring myriad practices such as third-party workplaces, office-day events, regular check-ins, etc. to make hybrid work for company culture. Moreover, talent professionals, this year, are also concerned with performance visibility. In other words, in a workplace where some employees come to the office while others mostly work from home, how can organizations make sure the contributions of the remote workforce remain visible and do not go understated?

6). Rebuilding the Future Leaders

This new dynamic in the employer-employee relationship puts great demand on the skillset of leaders across organizations. The traditional approach to management and leadership will no longer make the cut. The new leader needs to be more experimental, work with more influence than power, motivate with purpose, and lead a remote, diverse team. With all these rising demands, 24% of HR leaders express that they are concerned about their leaders’ ability to adjust and 60% of HR leaders have listed leadership development as their top priority for 2023.

Prepare Your Talent Management Strategy for 2023

These have been the driving forces shaping the new face of the workforce in 2023 and the top talent management trends responding to them. If you’re interested in digitizing your talent management experience, you can check out our talent management solutions here. And if you’re interested in exploring ways to rebuild your leaders and upskill your workforce, you can check out our learning solutions here.



Corporate Learning Programs: Theory to Practice

With the high rate of change in the skills in demand, 58% of companies say that closing skill gaps has become a priority. As a result, 96% of HR and L&D professionals expect their staff training budgets to increase this new year. However, according to a survey by City & Guilds that covered 600 L&D professionals, almost all of them had experienced the ‘failure’ of an in-house training program within the past five years. This makes justifying the learning investment and measuring its ROI one of the biggest challenges that L&D departments face within company walls. In this article, we will help you discover how you can create learning programs that instantly translate into lasting, visible, and measurable change.

Learning Effective Measurement

What is Learning Effectiveness Measurement?

One of the most commonly used models to measure learning effectiveness is the Kirkpatrick model. According to Kirkpatrick, learning effectiveness can be measured on four different levels:

Level I: Learning Reaction
In this level of learning ROI measurement, you measure how learners ‘feel’ about the programs they have received. It’s usually administered in the form of surveys mid, post, and, sometimes, 90 days post training. Adittionally, it is important for you to not get carried away with any high numbers here, though. They only mean that the program was ‘fun’ and ‘engaging’ and that the learners ‘feel’ they have learned something useful. The objective truth may be different, however.

Level II: Learning Outcome
In this level of learning effectiveness measurement, you try to measure the objective truth: have the learners really learned anything from the program? The best way to measure this is through assessments, capstone projects, and assignments. The data you gain here informs you about whether the learners have actually acquired the knowledge and skills that you set out to help them gain.

Level III: Behavioral Change
Starting from this level is where most organizations falter. At this level, you already know that learners have acquired the necessary knowledge and skills. The question is: have they used them on the job? You see, ‘knowing’ and ‘doing’ are two different things. And according to a learning survey by 24X7, only 12% of learners say they apply the skills from the training they receive on their job. It seems that, in training, everyone is excited about learning new skills, but the moment employees get back to their jobs, it’s business as usual, and employees revert back to doing the same old things in the same old way. This leaves organizations struggling to help employees implement their newly learned knowledge and skills.

Level IV: Learning Return on Investment (ROI)
If learning is successfully transferred on the job, you are going to likely be able to measure your ROI. You can measure it in costs saved or revenues generated. You can even measure it in qualitative terms; the ROI does not have to be quantitative. For example, your ROI can be % reduction in absenteeism, % increase in employee engagement, % employee attrition reduction, etc.

Now that you know the four levels of measuring the effectiveness of your learning programs, you must have already guessed that the biggest challenge and the most seminal to the performance of the L&D department is related to level III, i.e. creating behavioral change. In the next section, we’ll help you look to your L&D programs differently to create the lasting and impactful change you want.

Learning Programs As A Learning Campaign

Learning Programs As A Learning Campaign

To help employees transfer their newly acquired knowledge and skills on the job, you need to take off the hat of the L&D department and wear that of marketing. What do marketers do to influence consumer behavior? They build campaigns, not advertisements. Likewise, you need to build learning campaigns, not learning programs.

What’s the difference?

A learning program is usually a hit-and-run which often helps employees learn new skills which they leisurely discard once back on the job. Learning campaigns, however, involve the continuous reminding and inviting of employees to apply their new learnings, which can significantly motivate learning implementation and boost the level of behavioral change.

Here are a few tips about how you can transform your learning programs to learning campaigns.

Corporate Communication
Get all hands on deck to achieve your learning objectives. Create snippets of the most important learnings of your programs and make sure to get the corporate communication team on board to help disseminate these learnings. You can create snippets for all forms of communication such as email reminders, playbooks, job aids, infographics, and, even, offline posters that can be hung all around the office. The point is employees need to be continuously reminded of the key learning points of your L&D programs.

Employee Engagement
Get the employee engagement team on board too. What activities or company events can they organize to create memorable employee experiences that further cement the key learning points in the employees’ memories? What competitions and rewards can they develop to reinforce the message? The point is get the employee engagement team to have shared goals with you about getting employees excited about implementing their new learning.

Execution Excellence
Does your organization have an execution excellence or quality department? Whatever their name is in your organization, this is the function that is in charge of evaluating and improving organizational processes and policies. Have a discussion with them and help them understand the results of your learning needs assessment. Very often, employees do not apply what they have newly learned because their company policies, processes, and technology have been designed to fit the old ways of doing things. It helps to get the execution excellence department on board about what needs to change and with what level of priority in order to enable employees to apply what they have learned.

If you take this campaign approach to your L&D programs, you are likely to see your L&D efforts crowned with high behavioral change. And remember, it’s never a one-off; true learning impact only happens with regular and continuous reinforcement, using omni-channel communication.

Focus on Learning Campaigns

For the best use of your resources, you may find it more helpful to outsource the content of your learning programs so that you can focus on what truly matters- building learning campaigns. If you would like to know more about the various learning content we provide, please check out our various learning programs here.





Guide to Top Blended Learning Techniques

According to recent statistics, 90% of organizations now use e-learning as part of their learning & development offerings. That’s not surprising when we consider that a company like IBM has reportedly saved almost $200 million by switching from traditional training to e-learning. However, research by Statista shows that face-to-face learning is still the most preferred method of receiving learning by corporate employees, probably owing to the higher interaction and engagement levels usually associated with in-class training. So, how can organizations leverage the cost and convenience benefits of e-learning while maintaining the interaction and engagement benefits of in-class learning?

In this blog post, we’ll answer this question and help you discover how to create the right balance between the two by leveraging blended learning techniques.

Asynchronous and Synchronous Learning

The Two Main Learning Modalities

There are two main ways by which learning content can be delivered to learners in any organization. You must have already heard about them but let’s give you a quick brief of each of these modalities.

Synchronous Learning
Synchronous learning is learning that occurs at conditions of synchronicity of time, and not necessarily place. This means that the instructor and the learner meet at the same time. They can meet in a face-to-face in-class setting or in a virtual setting. In all cases, the learner must adjust their schedule to the schedule of the learning program to be able to attend and progress. Although it does not provide flexibility and convenience to learners, synchronous learning is one of the best ways to create an engaging, exciting learning environment.

Asynchronous Learning
Asynchronous learning is learning that occurs at conditions of asynchronicity of time and place. This means that the instructor and learner do not need to meet at the same time nor place for learning to take place. In other words, this is learning that is entirely self-paced and the learner can pursue it at their own time and convenience. Although the flexibility benefits provided by this learning modality cannot be understated, there is a notable decline in the levels of engagement and interactivity associated with this type of learning, as reported by instructors and learners alike.

So what can you do to leverage the pros of both while downplaying their cons? Blended learning!

What is Blended Learning?

Blended learning is that modality of learning by which the two previously mentioned approaches are ‘blended’ or ‘mixed’ together. According to KMPG, using this blended approach enabled IBM managers to learn five times more content at one-third of the cost of a classroom-only program. Moreover, although the managers had originally said they prefer face-to-face training, after trying the blended approach, they declared that they preferred this approach to traditional training. 

Therefore, done right, blended learning can leverage the pros of both modalities. Done wrong, blended learning can shed the light on the cons of both. So before you get excited and decide to create any random mix of synchronous and asynchronous training, take the time to read the below tips on how to make the perfect blend.

Blended learning Techniques

Top Effective Blended Learning Techniques

  • Make the right blend of theory & practice

Any well-designed learning program must contain a healthy balance between theory and practice. The best blend is to provide the theory component of the program in bite-sized content for self-paced learning, while adding the practice component of the program to the in-class sessions. By doing that, you help the learners grasp the theoretical topics at their own pace while leveraging the power of social learning to apply what they have learned through interaction and feedback.

  • Build interest through experiential learning

One of the biggest drivers behind learner success is the learner’s level of interest in the topic of study. Very often, learning & development professionals make the mistake of assuming that learners will simply ‘like’ to take the programs they offer. However, in the absence of a clear purpose, interest in the program may never arise and learning becomes more about ticking an item off the employee’s to-do list rather than a beneficial experience into which the learners fully immerse themselves. This is where blended learning comes in handy. You can start off your programs by in-class sessions that use experiential activities to shed light on the learning gap and build interest to motivate learners to bridge that gap. After subtly gaining buy-in in this way, you can then ask your employees to take your company-provided self-paced programs to bridge the identified gaps.

  • Build communities of practice

Learning is easier said than done. A common mistake is to assume that by achieving a high course completion rate that the course has been a success. Experience teaches us that this is not the case. The true measure of any program’s success is not the number of employees who report completion but rather the number of employees who apply what they have learned on the job. Consequently, any seasoned L&D professional knows that course completion is only the beginning of the road. You must follow up on it with continuous support and refreshers to reinforce learning and ensure implementation. Using blended learning is one way to provide that continuous reinforcement. How? A common technique is to follow up on your company’s completed self-paced programs by creating communities of practice. You create communities of practice by inviting employees who completed the programs to meet at regular intervals to set plans of implementation, success stories, and lessons learned.

  • Add an element of learning by teaching

Another effective way of implementing blended learning to increase learning effectiveness is to follow up on your self-paced programs with learner-led summary sessions. In these sessions, you can invite learners to take turns to present to other employees the summaries of the modules they have learned. By using the ‘learning by teaching’ technique, strongly advocated for by world renowned writer, Stephen Covey, you will increase the level of retention of your learners to reach 90%.

Revamp Your Blended Learning

These were our top techniques for developing effective blended programs. So, if you have your own in-class programs and want to start mixing in some self-paced content to increase flexibility and convenience, check out our e-learning courses. We offer e-learning programs on a wide array of topics ranging from compliance topics such as health and safety to business and leadership development. And for further inquiries, we would always be happy to hear from you at



Quick Guide to Corporate Assessments

More than 75% of The Times Best Companies to Work For and 80% of Fortune 500 firms use some form of psychometric testing. Not only that but companies who use pre-hire assessment tests report a 39% lower turnover rate, according to research conducted by the Aberdeen Group. With this data in mind, the importance of corporate assessments in hiring and developing talent cannot be undermined.

However, not all corporate assessments are created equal. And while one assessment may give an accurate presentation of an employee’s level of skill, another one may give a misleading presentation. So, if you are working in an organization and considering using assessments for talent acquisition or development or succession planning, you will find it helpful to learn first how to navigate all the types of assessments out there.

In this article, we’ll take you through a quick journey to help you discover the different types of assessments and how to distinguish the signal from the noise.

The Different Types of Corporate Assessments

Aptitude Tests
These are tests that measure one’s potential to do well in a particular ability, once learned. It does not signify current competence but rather potential competence if learning happens. Examples of such tests are foreign language or numerical aptitude tests.

Ability Tests
These are tests that measure one’s current level of skill with regard to a particular ability. In other words, they tell you whether someone has the ability to do something. In that sense, ability is the result of both aptitude and learning combined. Ability tests are numerous such as numerical ability, geospatial ability, musical ability, kinesthetic ability, etc.

Psychometric Tests
These are tests that measure behavioral traits or habits that an individual demonstrates or prefers. They could also measure certain personality dimensions. Examples of psychometric assessments are intelligence quotients, resilience assessments, personality assessments, etc. It is essential when using these assessments not to use them as an excuse for propagating bias. Instead, you need to appreciate the diversity they uncover and use their results to guide development & coaching efforts.

Knowledge Tests
These are tests that measure an individual’s level of knowledge regarding a particular topic. Knowledge, being the first level of Bloom’s Taxonomy, does not equate to skill or ability. The fact that someone ‘knows’ about something does not mean they can do it. As such, these knowledge tests are less often used in hiring talent and more often used as pre and post assessments while delivering learning solutions.

While delivering learning solutions, knowledge tests are usually administered in two forms:

Formative Assessments: As the name implies, ‘formative’ assessments are knowledge tests used to ‘form’ the remainder of the training program. They are assessments used pre or mid a training program to guide the training content and delivery till the end.

Summative Assessments: These are knowledge tests that are used towards the end of the training program to measure learning outcome. They measure whether the individual has actually learned what they were supposed to learn in the program.

The Two Main Factors of Assessments

When selecting corporate assessments for your talent management efforts, besides ensuring you select the right type of assessment for your purpose, you must also ensure that the assessment is scientifically sound. You can achieve this  through the two below factors:

Validity: This factor means that the assessment actually measures what it says it measures. This is usually achieved by comparing the results of the assessments with the actual real-life performance of the individuals who take it. Do they match? Do high test-scorers actually have high performance in real-life? Do low scorers actually have low performance? Of course, you don’t need to check the validity of the assessments on your own staff, although this is a good follow up practice. What you need to do is make sure that the assessments you use or purchase have sound statistical validity already proven by the assessment creators.

Reliability: This factor means that the results of the assessment remain relatively stable over time. This is usually achieved by the assessment creators through asking test takers to retake the test after a period of time passes since their initial test experience. If the results are relatively the same, the test is reliable; if not, then it is not reliable. It is important that you observe the reliability of the assessments you use on your own employees but it is also more important to seek out the reliability data of the assessment creators. If a test has low reliability, then it’s most probably not worth your budget.

Assessing Your Talent through Valid & Reliable Corporate Assessments

These were the two factors that you must consider as you purchase assessments for recruitment, learning, or succession planning efforts. If you’re interested in purchasing assessments you can trust for your organization, check out our vast library of assessment solutions here.

Leveraging Blockchain for Educational Institutions

Since its introduction in 2011, blockchain has been used as a powering technology in many industries such as the finance, legal, healthcare, and IoT sectors. Its adoption in education is no different. Still in its early stages, only 2% of educational institutions in 2019 were using it, according to a poll by Gartner. According to the same poll, 18% of higher education institutions were planning to use it. With its possible advantages to all educational levels from K-12 to higher education, blockchain is here to stay. So, if your educational institution still has not ridden the wave yet, it is time you consider it.

But before you decide whether you would like to include blockchain in your technology stack, let’s first explore what blockchain is and its potential benefits to your institution.

What is Blockchain?

Blockchain is a type of distributed ledger technology (DLT) that consists of a growing sequence of records, all of which are created and stored forming blocks. Each of these blocks is timestamped and linked to the following block using cryptography, thereby creating a ‘chain’ of blocks, otherwise known as a blockchain. The most interesting feature of the blockchain is that the data storage process is irreversible. In other words, once data is stored in the chain, it cannot be altered without altering the entire sequence of transactions after it, rendering it impossible to tamper with. Another extremely interesting feature of blockchain is that it is managed over a peer-to-peer (P2P) network. In other words, no centralized body is in charge of storing the data or managing it, rendering it efficient and relatively immune to corruption risks.

The State of Blockchain in Education

Although a relatively new technology, blockchain has been gradually gaining adoption in the academic field. In fact, the global Blockchain in Education market size has been valued at USD 118.73 million in 2021 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 43.94%, reaching USD 1055.98 million by 2027.

Why Blockchain in Education?

There are many applications to using blockchain in education. Together, they enable more efficiency in education administration, easier record and content sharing, and more student freedom. Here are a few of these applications.

Verification of Student Records

The average educational institution handles thousands of student records per year, ranging from birth certificates and IDs to previous educational certifications. The process of student enrollment requires the collection and verification of these records. Considering the fact that there are 967,734 unique credentials in the U.S alone, you can imagine how tedious and laborious this task usually is. With blockchain, once a record or certification is issued and stored in the chain, it becomes automatically verified because, remember, all blockchain records are irreversible and tamperfree. So, all educational institutions need to do to verify that a student certificate or transcript is not fake is check it on the blockchain. If it’s there, then it’s real. This automation in record collection and verification can save educational administrators a significant amount of time every year.

Issuance of Transcripts & Certification

Similar to the verification of students’ records, educational institutions spend an enormous amount of time every year verifying records for certification issuance. In fact, a recent study by the University of Rome revealed that the process of verifying diplomas cost the university more than $20,000 annually, corresponding to about 36 weeks of work. But with blockchain, the time spent on these tasks can be significantly reduced as courses completed by learners can be automatically saved on the chain, allowing for automated transcript and certificate issuance.

Storage of Learning Content

The blockchain allows for limitless storage of data, so educational institutions can also use it to upload and store their course content. This enables universal access for learners worldwide and helps educational institutions tap into global markets. It also guarantees copyright protection since the blockchain makes clear the initial content upload transaction owner and timestamp.

Smart Contracts

Blockchain enables the full enforcement of contracts using the decentralized technology, with no intermediaries involved, giving rise to an application more commonly known as ‘smart contracts’. Via smart contracts, when two parties enter an agreement on the blockchain, the chain verifies that they both have the means to meet their commitments. Then, once one party meets its commitment, the chain automatically enforces the other party’s commitment. For example, if a student enrolls for a particular course via a smart contract, the blockchain would first verify that they can pay the tuition fees for the course. Once the course is open for the student, the blockchain would automatically withdraw the payment from the student’s account, with no intermediary and no room for default. This is great for educational institutions as it significantly streamlines the tuition payment processes and enhances their efficiency.

Tokens & Rewards

Considering that a 2006 study exploring student attrition cited that 70% of high school dropouts said they were unmotivated, the importance of motivating learners by educators cannot be overlooked. Using the blockchain, educators can keep their learners motivated by using digital badges and cryptocoins to issue rewards. The badges can be instantly viewed and verified by future employers any time and the cryptocurrency can be used by the learners to make purchases online. It’s as sleek as that!

Leverage Blockchain for Your Educational Institution

These were a few of the top applications of blockchain in education. If you’re interested in knowing more about how blockchain can help your educational institution or are interested in viewing a live demo, you can check out the blockchain solutions for education by our partner, Educhain here.


The Future of Talent Management

A recent Manpower Group survey shows that 75% of organizations suffer from a shortage in the talent needed to move their organizations forward. Despite this shortage, 95% of employees in a survey done by McKinsey believe that their organizations’ talent management strategies are lacking or falling short of meeting their objectives. So why is that? And what can organizations do to enhance the effectiveness of their talent management strategies?

To answer these questions, we shall take you through a quick overview of the current trends affecting the talent force and how talent management strategies need to adapt to match these trends.

Trends Affecting the Current Talent Force

1. Demographic Shifts

Most developed countries around the world are facing varying degrees of decline in population growth, causing many shifts in the overall regional shares of the global workforce. As a result, the African share of the global talent force is expected to rise by 5%, while the European share is expected to decline by 4% by 2030. Consequently, Africa and Asia will continue to be home to close to three-quarters of the total global talent force. This has a significant impact on how organizations should manage their talent. For organizations to survive, they must adapt their talent management strategies to embrace higher diversity and inclusion (D&I). This includes being open to hiring global talent, providing remote work opportunities, developing employees’ multicultural collaboration skills, and building fair and equitable global compensation and benefits schemes.

Moreover, as the Boomers generation retires, the future workforce will be 75% Millennial by 2025. This fact has interesting implications. In a study done by PwC, when asked which benefits they would most value from an employer, Millennials named training and development and flexible working opportunities over financial benefits. It is apparent that, with the Millennial generation, talent management professionals must be aware that they are facing a generation that puts a higher emphasis on ‘purpose’ and ‘flexibility’ as important benefits that attract them to employers and help them stay. Therefore, the old ways of simply hiring the right people and ‘paying them to stay’ will no longer work. Talent professionals must adapt their strategies to offer a more attractive employer value proposition to the Millennial generation.

2. Changes in the Future of Work

The Future of Skills report by LinkedIn Economic Graph shows that the skills required for the future of work have changed by more than 25% since 2015. Not only that the skills have significantly changed, but they are also likely to continue to change by anywhere from 39 to 44% by 2025. With this rate of change, simply hiring the right people and providing basic compliance training will no longer work. Also, expecting to simply hire external talent when no internal candidates are suitable will no longer work too. With this rate of change, chances are that the talent that organizations will need in the future will be in shortage inside and outside the organization. This is why talent development professionals must be on the lookout for what skills their organizations will need in the future and must proactively help their current talent prepare for that.

Moreover, as a result of the 2020 pandemic, employees are now more accustomed to different work arrangements than in the pre-pandemic period. In fact, in a Buffer survey, a whopping 99% of employees say that they would like to work remotely at least some of the time for the rest of their careers. Even more, in an Owl Labs report, 32% say that they will leave their organizations if they have to return to work on-site full-time. With these statistics in mind, organizations must adapt their talent management strategies for a more remote workforce.

network based leadership

3. Changes in the Nature of Leadership

Top-down hierarchical organizational models are dead and network-based holocratic models are the new rule. The younger knowledge workers expect self-managed teams, independence in decision-making, and knowledge and resource sharing among organizational departments.

Moreover, Millennials have learned the lessons of ages past, so most Millenials believe that they are personally responsible for their own skill and career development. This gives rise to a more widespread, previously overlooked type of leadership– self-leadership. The future workforce will assume more self-leadership than the previous ones, both for personal development and for the achievement of organizational objectives. Therefore, talent management strategies must evolve to build, support, and retain this new kind of leadership.

The Current Status of Talent Management

So, with all these trends in the talent force, how are organizations doing with managing their talent? Not so well! Research shows that only 5% of employees think their organization’s talent management strategies are very effective and only 23% of managers and senior executives working on talent management believe their current acquisition and retention strategies will work. So, how can we turn things around?

talent management

Build a Talent Management Strategy for the Future

A mistake talent professionals sometimes do is to assume that what worked before will continue to work. But with the current trends affecting the talent force, it is evident that a change needs to be made. Here are some general changes that talent professionals must start integrating into their current strategies to be more relevant to the future.

1. Globalize & Localize

As you set your talent management strategy, be open to hiring, developing, and maintaining global talent. This is no easy feat but a global workforce requires access to a myriad of local recruitment platforms, global training providers, and global compensation and benefits schemes. You cannot simply post a job vacancy on a single local platform and expect to attract global talent. More importantly, to reap the benefits of hiring global talent, you must put in the effort to make them feel included. Your D&I programs should provide focus on the localization of holidays, celebrations, company-wide communications, training, etc. It should also put emphasis on providing fair promotion and career advancement opportunities to all employees regardless of which part of the world they are working from.

2. Decentralize

As said earlier, Millennials simply have taken matters into their own hands. Therefore, relinquish your control and establish talent management solutions that give employees control over what career progression paths to choose, individual training needs they would like to address, how they would like to address them, what organizational goals they would like to pursue, and how they would like to be rewarded for their work. In fact, giving employees personal control over their career development significantly increases their chances of achieving their development goals.

3. Socialize

You are now dealing primarily with the ‘social media generation’. This is the generation that grew up with immediate access to anyone anywhere. They could easily network with the top C-Suite leaders of any organization on LinkedIn. They could easily look up information anywhere anytime, learn from online resources shared by others on social platforms, and reach out with questions on forums. Of course, this generation comes to work with different expectations about how knowledge and people are accessed.

This is why your talent management strategy needs to leverage this social lever. Do you use social media for talent acquisition? Do you leverage company referrals? Do you create a social media buzz around your employer value proposition? Do you incorporate social learning in your training solutions? Do you have an organizational knowledge base accessible to and searchable by all employees? Do you have an internal platform that enables immediate communication with anyone in the company, including the CEO? The answers to these questions show how well you have socialized your talent management processes.

4. Personalize

Last but not least, this new Millennial talent force is used to receiving personalized solutions in all aspects. Therefore, a one-size-fits-all approach to training, compensation, and motivation does not work. Diversify the modalities of your learning solutions, offer a wide range of benefits that employees can choose from, and diversify your organization’s employee engagement initiatives to provide employees with options to choose from.

How Can XpertLearning Help?

In this article, we have given you a quick overview of the top trends changing the face of talent management. If you’re interested in improving your talent management strategy, you can reach out to benefit from our consultancy services. And if you would like to do talent management like a pro, then you may consider purchasing a talent management system. To help you with this decision, you can check out the wide array of options we offer here or, even better, pass by stand C28 at the HR Summit and Expo, Dubai, on November 15th and 16th to watch a live demo of our talent management solutions and discuss your needs. To obtain a free entry, register here.

Communicating Like a Leader

Communication skills are often cited as one of the most sought-after skills in the corporate world. In fact, research by McKinsey about the future of work has listed communication skills in the list of top 13 skill groups expected to be in demand in the future and the ‘ability to synthesize messages’ as one of the biggest predictors of employment. Studies also show that improved communication skills enhance employees’ chances of advancing in their careers.

So, with all this buzz about communication skills? What are communication skills exactly? And how can you use them to press the fast forward button on your career?


What are Communication Skills?

As the name implies, communication skills are the skills required to exchange verbal and non-verbal messages between one or more parties. One party? Yes, we’ll get to that later.

The messages exchanged in the communication process could range from simple, direct, factual information to complex, emotionally-laden exchanges. By all accounts, communication is a two-way street. It involves listening, speaking, showing understanding, and expressing empathy.

The Two Types of Communication

One of the biggest mistakes that professionals make when they try to improve their communication skills is that they jump to improving their interpersonal communication. However, true and effective communication starts from within. There are two types of communication that are important to develop in order to build relations effectively with others.

  • Intrapersonal Communication: This involves one’s ability to identify one’s emotions and contradicting thoughts, question them, and discuss them with one’s self.
  • Interpersonal Communication: This involves one’s ability to communicate one’s emotions and thoughts with others while understanding and empathizing with others’ emotions and thoughts.

It is critical to understand that effective intrapersonal communication is the road to effective interpersonal communication. You cannot have one without the other.

Now that you know about the two types of communication, you may be wondering what this has to do with career advancement and progress. In the next section, we’ll tell you the connection between the two types of communication and your leadership potential and that of your employees.

The Two Types of Communication in Action



The above model proposed by Thomas Harris M.D. in 1967 remains to date one of the best models describing the interplay between both types of communication in the workplace and personal life. Every quadrant in this model describes one position that an individual takes in life as a result of communicating with their selves and others. According to Harris, one’s position in the model inevitably dictates their behavior and their leadership potential.

The Four Positions:

  • I’m not OK, You’re OK: In this position, the individual communicates to one’s self a sense of insufficiency and low self-esteem, whilst putting others on a pedestal. This results in a breakdown in communication resulting from a lack of openness to express one’s self to others, depriving the entire group of one’s intellectual contribution.
  • I’m OK, You’re Not OK: In this position, employees drive others away by a heightened sense of self and an overmagnification of their own egos in comparison to others. Although individuals with this position may or may not have justifications for their high self-esteem, yet looking down upon the thoughts and emotions of others leads to the alienation of team members and an overall decline in the collective intelligence of teams.
  • I’m Not OK, You’re NOT OK: In this position, employees fail to appreciate themselves and others leading to low morale and demotivation across the entire team. Employees in these positions communicate a lack of purpose and continuous doubts about a team’s ability to succeed.
  • I’m OK, You’re OK: In this position, the individual communicates confidence and trust in one’s skills and others’, thereby, leveraging the collective intelligence of the group, creating high team morale, and motivating the entire team to have all hands on deck.

How to Communicate Like a Leader

After being introduced to the four types of communication resulting from the interplay between intrapersonal and interpersonal communication, you might have already deduced the common position that leaders usually have. Yes, it’s ‘I’m OK, You’re OK’! 

People with leadership skills tend to communicate confidence in their selves and others. They are more understanding of their own mistakes and others’ too, which renders them more forgiving and willing to accept mistakes as opportunities for learning rather than judgment. They are overall more pleasant and motivating to work with, continuously challenging others to share their opinions and sharing feedback openly and nicely.

Develop Your Leadership Potential

So, if you want to push forward your career in the right direction, start by exploring what you are communicating to yourself first. When that’s OK, work on developing what you’re communicating to others. If you’re interested in knowing more about the effect of communication on organizations, how to improve organizational communication, and boost company performance accordingly, register to attend our XpertTalk on just this topic here.



Seven Tips for More Effective Virtual Instructor-Led Training

Since 2020, online training has been on the rise with surveys reporting that at least 80% of companies have used an e-learning platform to deliver their learning & development programs. According to a recent study by the Training Industry, of the huge number of online training programs conducted, 31% have been in the form of virtual instructor-led training (VILT). So what is virtual instructor-led training exactly? How does it differ from other online training modalities? And how can organizations optimize this form of training for the best results?

If you’re interested in knowing the answers to these questions, keep on reading this article. In this article, we’ll share with you some top tips to follow in order to deliver virtual instructor-led training programs that are as impactful as offline training.

What is Virtual Instructor-Led Training (VILT)?

Virtual instructor-led training is a form of learning program that occurs online. These programs differ from their self-paced counterparts in that they are instructor-led and synchronous. In other words, an instructor delivers the training entirely online using a meeting or learning application such as Zoom, Google Meet, or Blackboard Collaborate.  Learners attend the training program from anywhere across the globe simultaneously as it is being delivered.

What is the added value of that? Interaction! Interaction is the single biggest advantage that VILT has over self-paced programs. The face-to-face availability of both the instructor and the learners all at the same time gives room for higher interactivity and knowledge sharing. The question becomes how organizations can leverage this advantage.

Virtual Instructor-Led Training (VILT) in Numbers
75% of organizations use virtual classrooms and webcasting for online training.
37% of companies’ training portfolios are being offered in virtual and hybrid delivery modalities.
69% of learning leaders think that 60% or more of their organization’s instructor-led training will remain virtual.
● Employees learn 70% of their abilities on the job, 20% from their peers and colleagues, and 10% through formal training sessions.
32% of learning leaders favor in-person training, as opposed to 16% favoring VILT.
36% of senior leaders prefer other learning approaches to VILT.
● Learning leaders describe learners’ distraction as the biggest area for VILT improvement.
● Learning leaders more often cite interactivity and engagement as an area of needed improvement in VILT.

Despite the obvious advantage of VILT, many trainers struggle to make it work due to the lack of upskilling received to adapt their delivery styles to the new learning environment. In fact, many learning & development professionals have not received any sort of upskilling in this new modality before being demanded to design and deliver VILT.

So, how can we turn this around?
Here we introduce to you our top tips to deliver VILT that engages and sticks.

1. Set the rules

One of the big mistakes that VILT instructors do is that they give up the control they have in offline training once the training goes VILT. Instead, make sure you re-iterate the rules that make training work. One of the most important rules to set before the training starts is the ‘camera on’ rule. It is a best practice that learners commit to opening their cameras throughout the VILT program to help them maintain their focus and achieve their learning goals.

2. Do not compromise on instructional design

Sound instructional design is based on the 30%-70% or the 20%-80% rule where the instructor’s speaking time ranges from 20-30% of the training time as opposed to 70-80% from the learners’ side. This is maintained by simply presenting the learning material in the instructors’ speaking time and dedicating the remaining time to active learning activities such as problem-solving, application, role-playing, case study analysis, etc.

However, for some reason, some of the best instructors who follow these rules offline sometimes entirely drop them when they move to the VILT sphere. It is important to think through ways to adapt your existing offline activities to work online so that you can maintain the same healthy speaking time distribution in your VILT programs.

3. Leverage the learning platform

The platforms used for VILT today have increasingly new and extremely useful features that can assist in driving interaction. However, reports show that many of these features go unused. For example, a study by Capterra shows that 32% of organizations have reporting or analytics features in their learning platforms but they go largely unused. To reap the benefits of the technology you are using and boost interactivity, take the time to consult with your provider or the IT department in your company to understand how to use the various features your platform comes with. Most platforms today have handy features such as polls, reactions, screen sharing, whiteboard sharing, breakout rooms, etc.

4. Adapt activities & games

Do not skip the activities and games simply because the training is now online. You can adapt most activities & games to be conducted in VILT format. There are many tools that can help you with this such as Google Jamboard, Miro, Padlet, Quizizz, Mentimeter, Cosmobuzz, SpintheWheel, Kahoot, or even good old Powerpoint. You can even use instructional design software such as Storyline to create shareable simulations that learners can take in the online class with you.

5. Educate on the technology

One of the biggest barriers to leveraging all the tools that can help with VILT is that very often the learners themselves struggle with the technology. In fact, according to OECD, on average, only 5% of adults score at the highest level of digital proficiency in PIAAC while about 15% of adults lack even the most basic computer skills needed to use learning technology. To counterfeit this, create short tutorial videos about all the tools that will be used throughout the training and share them with the learners in due time before the program starts along with the rules. This should give the learners enough time to acquaint themselves with the tools they will use and the rules they are expected to adhere to during the program.

6. Do not compromise on classroom management

A big part of classroom management is managing under and over-participating learners. All effective instructors manage this well offline, but for some reason, they leave this very important skill out the door before they start their VILT program. Remember, VILT does not mean relinquishing control. Therefore, we advise you to continue to invite under-participating learners to answer specific questions and share their opinions, to thank over-participating learners for their contributions, and to take the time to listen to others’ points of view.

7. Manage recordings

Although the ability to catch up on what has been missed through watching class recordings is one of the best advantages that comes with VILT, unfortunately, practice shows that a ‘promise to share recordings’ before the start of a program significantly decreases attendance. Therefore, we advise you to add within the program rules minimum attendance criteria for recording sharing. This will ensure that learners prioritize attendance and resort to recordings only when necessary.

How Can XpertLearning Help?

These were our top tips for delivering more effective virtual instructor-led programs. If you are considering transforming your ILT programs into VILT but need help making the shift, check out our VILT solutions here. Whether you train in-house or bring in external instructors, we can assist you with creating new training programs or transforming your existing Instructor-Led Training programs into a virtual format.


The Layman’s Guide to Cryptocurrency

If you work in finance, banking, or investment, you must have heard the words ‘cryptocurrency’ and ‘Bitcoin’ flying around. In fact, as we stand today, there are more than 10,000 cryptocurrencies in the world with a value of $919 billion. With this ever-increasing pace of adoption, you might be wondering, ‘are cryptocurrencies right for my organization?’ or ‘shall we start investing in Bitcoin?’. If these questions are crossing your mind, we have the answers for you.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to cryptocurrencies, how you can get them, and whether they are a good investment.

What are Cryptocurrencies?

Cryptocurrencies are digital currencies that are exchanged on a decentralized ledger called a blockchain that facilitates all kinds of financial transactions.

When using a blockchain, there is no centralized bank or government mediating the financial transactions between parties. Instead, the blockchain automatically mediates all transactions by storing every set of transaction information in a block that is highly secured with cryptography. This ensures the safe and tamper-free recording of all transactions. It also enables the automatic verification and authorization of parties, so financial transactions take place with ease, speed, safety, and more cost-effectiveness.



The Pros of Cryptocurrencies

Owing to their reliance on blockchain technology as well as their removal of all intermediaries in transactions, cryptocurrencies present users with a huge set of advantages. Here are some of the many benefits of using cryptocurrencies.

1. They are global currencies
Cryptocurrencies are not tied to any particular jurisdiction. As such, they can be used anywhere and transferred freely from one country to another. In fact, due to the ease by which they facilitate international transfers, they are expected to play a growing role in the remittance economy.

2. They are exchangeable with fiat currencies
Fiat currencies are currencies legally issued by a jurisdiction such as the USD or GBP. Some people fear that cryptocurrencies can only be used in the ‘digital’ world. However, they actually can be exchanged in crypto exchanges for fiat currencies which you can use in the ‘real’ world. This exchangeability makes cryptocurrencies highly valuable as you don’t need to wait for wider adoption in order to start using them.

3. They are highly secure
As the prefix implies, cryptocurrencies are highly cryptographed currencies. In other words, they are secured by sophisticated cryptography which makes it impossible to change any historical records on the blockchain. Not only that but blockchains also use a two-factor authentication process to allow transactions. This makes cryptocurrency transactions one of the most secure financial transactions out there.

4. Crypto transactions are faster and more cost-effective
Since exchanging cryptocurrencies for products, services, or fiat currencies on the blockchain is an automated decentralized transaction, all intermediaries are eliminated. Such elimination significantly reduces the cost of transactions for every purchase or sale you make. It also significantly enhances the speed. In fact, according to a recent study, ‘Bitcoin transactions take an average of 10 min to settle…In severe situations, this might last for several hours or even days……but it’s an average of three days of bank transactions processing.’ This is a very luring feature to consider if you’re considering adding cryptocurrencies to your organization’s treasury.

5. Cryptocurrencies are market-based
You may see this as a pro or a con, but the point here is that the value of a cryptocurrency is only dependent on the changes in supply and demand. No government interventions could falsely increase or decrease its value. As such, cryptocurrencies are extremely transparent currencies.

6. They are growing in adoption
Although blockchain technology appeared in 2008, the first cryptocurrency ever, Bitcoin, was introduced in 2009. Despite their promising benefits, cryptocurrencies’ adoption did not grow as fast as anticipated. That being said, their usage has still been growing steadily since the inception of cryptocurrency. In fact, now some major companies such as, AT&T, Microsoft, Overstock, Shopify, Rakuten, Home Depot, and Rolex are already accepting them as valid modes of payment for their products and services.

How to Obtain Cryptocurrencies?

One of the most pressing questions that people interested in crypto have is ‘how to get it?’ and ‘where to keep it?’. In the section of the article, we’ll provide you with simple non-techy answers to these questions.

Buy a Cryptocurrency

The first thing you need to do is to obtain cryptocurrencies.

You may have heard of ‘mining’ as a way of obtaining cryptocurrencies. However, as easy as ‘mining’ sounds, it is actually almost impossible for individuals to ‘mine’ cryptocurrencies. Why? Because although technically speaking, all you need to mine is a computer and an internet connection, the amount of energy your computer will need to mine can be the equivalent of an entire country’s consumption. As a result, only big organizations in actuality have the resources to mine cryptocurrencies. In fact, a recent study by MIT shows that 10% of miners account for 90% of the cryptocurrencies’ mining capacity.


So what can you do?

There are much easier ways for you to obtain cryptocurrencies. In fact, it is just as simple as buying fiat currency. All you need to do is select a broker or a cryptocurrency exchange platform to buy cryptocurrencies. You’ll find many options for exchange platforms. Review their fees and features well before you make the choice.

Once you have selected your broker or platform, you’ll need to fund your account with fiat currency in exchange for the crypto ones. Now, you will have cryptocurrencies in your account and you will be free to make ‘buy’ or ‘sell’ orders using your broker or exchange platform’s website or mobile application.

Where to Store Cryptocurrencies?

Cryptocurrencies are digital non-tangible assets that you can only access using a private key. So it is important that you store this digital key in a safe and secure place to prevent unauthorized access to it and your cryptos. Most crypto exchange platforms will provide you with crypto wallets to store your private key safely. However, depending on the platform, you may be offered a ‘hot’ or ‘cold’ wallet.

● Hot Wallet– These wallets are digital. They provide you with online software that you can use to securely store your key.
● Cold Wallet– These wallets are physical. They provide you with an offline electronic device that you can use to securely store your key.

Wallets also use high-security practices to ensure the safety of your key and, thereby, your assets. However, it is worth noting that they are not as secure as the blockchain itself and that, in fact, many cryptocurrency breaches happen through crypto wallets and not the blockchain.

Proceed Wisely

As promising as cryptocurrency is, it is still a currency in its infancy and it is still highly unregulated and unprotected by law. Therefore, as an intelligent banker, investor, or financier, weigh the returns against the risks; the benefits against the costs, and proceed wisely.

How Can XpertLearning Help?

This has been our introduction to cryptocurrency. If you are interested in knowing more about fintech, artificial intelligence applications in finance, cryptocurrencies, and potential tech-induced disruptions in finance, check out our banking and finance courses. These courses are presented by our partner, Intuition, a leading global knowledge solutions company helping financial professionals develop the skills and expertise they need to unlock their potential.



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