The CBI advises that 9 out of 10 employees will need to reskill by 2030, to avoid a sustained unemployment crisis and to support the future UK economy.

No matter what sector you work in, competitive advantage in today’s economy has never been more critical and maximising your team’s output is imperative. But with the pandemic affecting many organisations growth plans, there is a clear need to find alternative ways of upskilling or supplementing your teams bandwidth.

We recently reported on how many people have become naturally risk adverse and have decided to stay in post if their role is secure and choosing not to move jobs. The question is, when is the ideal time for employers to reward loyalty, invest in their people, increase their teams skills, capability and future career potential within their own business?

Ultimately, every Procurement & Supply Chain leader’s success relies on having a great team behind them.

It’s therefore vital to take time to regularly assess the teams’ personal development plans, their remote working challenges and understand their individual career plans better. This identifies any skills gaps, builds a higher performing team and matches their capability to the current challenges, as well as mapping future workforce planning needs. To do this you first need to identify the skills most important for your team.

Once you are clear on your needs, the biggest challenge is assessing your people against the organisational requirements quickly. There are very few specialist ‘Procurement & Supply Chain’ competency assessment tools in the market and not all are fit for purpose, as they’re sometimes reliant on workshops or external consulting teams measuring this for you. However, in response to the pandemic these online solutions are now available, find out more.

Upskilling your existing team will help you understand the short, medium and longer term gaps and how to manage them.

Upskilling is an effective strategy, understanding the priorities across the team and engaging in these training areas first will give you a quick impact on the teams performance and also identify the real gaps, where you will need to recruit.

Hire the right people with the right skills.

Taking the time to identify the skillsets you are missing, will greatly enhance your ability to find the right person for the role, first time round. You can also utilise the same competency assessment tools as part of the interview process, ensuring candidates possess the right capability attributes. Getting it right first time can save you a lot of time and money in the long-term.

There is also the option of interim support.

If your needs are more urgent and the time to recruit and train someone prove impractical, then an Interim solution could solve the problem. Bringing experienced interims in who can ‘hit the ground running’ can certainly be the quickest and most straight forward solution. And better still, a good interim will bring experience to the table which can help upskill other members of the team. Whilst it may seem a short-term fix, it can prove to be a good solution for special projects.

Our recent Covid recruitment impacts survey found that prior to Covid only 15% of organisations used ‘Procurement & Supply Chain’ functional capability assessment as part of their interview process, this has now risen to 70% who are either using it now, or plan to use it.

Put simply – upskilling is essential to any team. Make no mistake, those who do not invest will risk being left behind.


If you need support in developing your strategy and approach in this area or would like a copy of the full report from our recent Covid recruitment survey for further insights, do not hesitate to reach out to us at ProSearch Recruitment Solutions, the Procurement & Supply Chain recruitment and training specialists.

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