What is Skills Intelligence?
Does your HR team manually track and update your workforce’s skills using documents or spreadsheets? This approach takes significant time and is challenging to keep up to date across the organization. With new advancements in skills intelligence software, it’s never been easier to capture your workforce’s skills in real-time. But what is skills intelligence?
Skills intelligence uses skills taxonomies to automate the collection, organization, updates, and analysis of your workforce’s skills, according to SHRM. The approach is part of a movement to skills-based talent management, which focuses on analyzing actual skills instead of just looking at education and past jobs to determine hiring and advancement.
HR teams have kept track of their workforce’s skills for years to inform their hiring and training programs. However, as a manual process, the information was never complete and difficult to manage. With automation, gathering and keeping data current has become far more manageable.
Skills taxonomies are at the root of these new platforms, and with technology advancements affecting every department, these taxonomies need to be agile enough to evolve quickly. Gartner previously noted that almost one-third of the skills required for a role in 2018 would be irrelevant in 2022. And that nearly half of HR leaders didn’t know what skills gaps existed within their workforce. Skills taxonomies “organize employee skills into hierarchies featuring groups and clusters, focus more on the granular skills needed to perform specific jobs than on broader competencies, and also enable line managers to validate workers’ skills.”
Previously, skills data was siloed in different databases that didn’t integrate well. The new skills intelligence software can better bring this disparate information together. According to co-founder and principal analyst at RedThread Research, Dani Johnson, “Access to that kind of comprehensive skills data can help leaders make much better strategic decisions about talent management.” RedThread Research’s 2022 study indicated the growth of the skills technology market. Of the 45 technology vendors profiled in the study, 90 percent offer skills-tracking solutions.
One of the new features of the skills intelligence platforms is the ability for employees to input their own information. By making the software intuitive and simple to use, employees and job seekers can quickly update their information. To keep employees honest, verification is also required to maintain the credibility of the data. For example, employee information is reviewed by managers or others before being added.
Some more advanced offerings use AI to find related skills that employees may have but didn’t list. The article states, “Inference technology reads, analyzes and harvests data from internal and publicly available external sources to provide a fuller and more up-to-date picture of employees’ skill sets.”
Another feature of the newer platforms is the ability to import external data. One example is global labor market data, which identifies skills on the rise or decline. This data can indicate changes at the macro level, such as shifting programming skills to cloud-based technologies. It can also show skills by region if a company is looking to expand and for a suitable location based on the existing workforce.
Skills intelligence platforms can improve your company’s ability to recruit top talent, identify internal employees for promotion or new roles, and help provide a strategic advantage over competitors. For more articles on human resources, executive topics, talent acquisition, recruitment, and more, visit our blog.