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Rethinking recruiting and learning with AI

AI is reframing how businesses should recruit and train employees. Assessing what skills are valuable in their business an looking at the tasks their employees carry out and recruiting or upskilling accordingly. Ensuring their business and employees not only benefit from AI but thrive creating a perfect blend of AI and humans.

Recruitment Challenges
Recruiting has become a challenge in recent years with employees demanding a better work life balance, more flexible hours and working from anywhere. Combined with the digital skills where they are more jobs that candidates recruiting is tough. Gallup and Amazon Web Services stated that 72% of UK businesses have vacancies for workers with digital skills and 68% find it challenge to recruit digital workers.

Businesses are increasingly seeking individuals who have digital skills such as data literacy, data analysis, advanced coding and AI, of which 75% of people believed hold the greatest value today in the job market today. Along with IT support, trouble shooting and cyber security with the increasing growing threat of cybercrime.

By bringing in apprentices and enhancing the skill set of your current team, you can equip them with the digital competencies vital for your business, alongside other necessary abilities and the crucial ‘soft skills’ to remain competitive in this new world.

Apprenticeships the Answer
By recruiting apprentices, you can mould and shape the apprentice to have the skills that your business specifically requires and to close your critical skills gap. They are a fresh, enthusiastic talent that will learn, develop, and hone their skills on the job while receiving a salary. You can support the local community by working with local schools, colleges and training providers providing a diverse workforce for all.

Apprentices benefit from contextual learning and together, with your training provider, you can get creative structuring them a mutually beneficial apprenticeship programme that will deliver results.

They are a very cost-effective method of recruiting and should be viewed a long-term investment that will pay off resulting in a loyal, eager employee. For companies with a payroll of over £3 million they must pay 0.5% of their payroll costs into a fund for training. For all other companies the government will pay 95% and they must pay the remaining 5%.

Companies that don’t spend their levy can transfer to other companies who are registered on the apprenticeship service so some SMEs can receive 95% funding from the government and use a transfer to fund the 5% therefore costing them nothing.

Apprenticeships Not Just for School Leavers
Businesses should utilise apprenticeships for existing employees and use this opportunity to upskill existing employees in digital and soft skills or wherever the skill gap is. By having a culture of continuous learning and development you will create more loyal enthusiastic employees who will be more productive, and you are more likely to retain them.

One of the drawbacks of the apprenticeship programme and indeed for SMEs is that apprentices need to conduct 20% of the learning ‘on the job’ which can be a headache for SMEs. However, it must be viewed as a long-term investment as it is much more expensive to recruit than train employees.

Softer Skills More Important Than Ever
AI will augment lots of roles but it will also replace many roles so it is vital that businesses study what skills and tasks are valuable in your workplace, thinking about which tasks could potentially be automated and which ones can’t.

Focus on training apprentices and upskilling employees ensuring they are trained on your required skill set and softer skills such as communicating, teamwork, creativity, empathy, and critical thinking. These are the skills that humans excel in and not technology so must be identified and constantly improved.

Deloitte stated that soft skill intensive jobs will grow 2.5x faster than other jobs, and by 2030 soft skills jobs will make up 63% of all jobs. Soft skills are becoming increasingly vital in the workplace because they are transferable and can be applied to different scenarios within various roles. As the world grows digitally, it is the soft skills that will become more fundamental in the workplace.

Train with AI
AI can be used to help HR recruit apprentices and new employees using it to screen candidates using unbiased methods, saving the time and effort, and freeing them up to focus on the human side such as interviews.

It can also be used to train apprentices and upskill existing employees where they can use AI online learning tools and courses to develop their skills. This can be through your Apprenticeship Training Provider or via another platform.

Reframing Recruitment
Apprentices need to be viewed as a long-term investment and as home grown talent specific to your business’s needs. You will reap the benefits tenfold of an eager, loyal and dedicated member of your team. Fostering a culture of learning is vital in the world of work today and businesses need to reframe how they see employees’ jobs and focus more on the tasks at hand and the skills required and available.

By championing learning and development your team will be excited by the changes coming with AI and new technology. They will be rewarded by a business that invests in its people creating a workforce that is ready for the digital age.

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