Supporting business pivots in 2021

During a catch up with Enterprise IT News, PERSOLKELLY Consulting’s managing director and Business Head in APJ, Anthony Raja Devadoss shared about upskilling and reskilling activities in Malaysia.

Specifically, upskilling and reskilling needs to happen to support pivots that businesses make in a new normal.

After sharing the many programmes and resources available to support individual and company efforts to learn new skills, Anthony pointed out the importance of effective execution.

 “Malaysia, I would say is ready in terms of capability and capacity (to upskill and reskill), the programmes are available out there.

“But I need to be able to access it. And I need to have the broadband technology, to do so.”

He drew attention to efforts in advanced countries that address the issue of accessibility. It usually involves providing free Internet so populations can have easier access to online education and even healthcare over the Internet.

“If we have the opportunity to ask, our wishlist for 2021 is for the government to consider giving free Internet for education, and free Internet for healthcare,” Anthony said.

He also shared about the Finnish government which gave away a free AI online learning programme to each citizen in the European Union.

“Every citizen gets an opportunity to learn,” he said adding that some form of cash to gain digital literacy skills, is another item on the wishlist for the government.

“Imagine, we can go pick up a new skill so that we can become more attractive to an employer. That’s the pivot the individual has to do,” he said.

Imagine, we can go pick up a new skill so that we can become more attractive to an employer. That’s the pivot the individual has to do,” he said.

In fact, he had five tips for individuals as well as businesses, on how to deal with the current situation that a majority of us may find ourselves in.

Tips for Businesses

According to Anthony, the the first of five things he wants to say to businesses, is to be prudent. “You have to have your cash flow. I’ll be very honest. If you are not prudent, you may not survive this pandemic.”

“Secondly, from the upskilling and new skilling perspective, please be bold enough to introduce new aspects of learning and development to your teams.” This can mean taking advantage of all the government opportunities out there, registering for them freely, and encouraging each employee to pick up at least 3 skills.

“This is for the companies to instruct their employees to do so,” Anthony explained.

The third tip is to digitally transform the company. “You can’t say you are, and then you can’t sell your goods and services online.

“If you are digitally ready, your pay roll, or recruitment, or even newsletter is online. These are simple things you can do, to digitally transform. So, DX your company,” Anthony said.

The fourth point is with regards to exploring talent exchange. “Only a company can do this. A business owner or HR head may think, ‘Now, I might not a have role for my team member because of COVID-19, but can I work with another company to help this person contribute his knowledge?’

This requires thinking out-of-the-box and the opportunities are tremendous if the companies involved are not competing in the market.

“But, if you have a talent who can go across the board, it keeps (the employer engaged with the talent), and you are able to build his capability,” Anthony rationalised.

He also advised businesses to have a look at what they can do to help the underprivileged communities. “We don’t know what’s happening in the urban, suburban, and rural areas, but we can imagine the unequal impact across these areas.”

Especially in rural areas where there is limited to no access to technology, health, and more, an organisation actually has the resources and opportunity to lessen the negative impact in these areas.

Anthony concluded, “Do what you can to help the underprivileged, as your COVID social responsibility, or CSR.”