Switched on: How upskilling can unlock the hidden power of your people

Published 5 November 2019 by Ben Drinkwater

Gone are the days where Broadcasters can rely on traditional forms of media consumption to drive their growth. As our client learnt, in the ‘battle of the eyeballs’, businesses must now fight hard to monetize the online space, close the digital skills gap and attract the best and brightest talent. Read on to find out how one broadcaster partnered with Circus Street to upskill and preserve their team. 

 

Digital skills deficit in broadcast media

Let’s be honest, the ways in which we consume content have changed beyond recognition. With online connected devices, on demand and streaming services, viewers have the power to choose what to watch, any time, any place.

Monopolising on this burgeoning market, the last ten years has seen the entry of global players like Amazon and Netflix onto the scene – leading to an explosion of content and a barrage of consumer choice. 

The response from traditional broadcasters has been swift. The BBC released all episodes of the acclaimed Killing Eve immediately after the first episode aired, while the Broadcasters Audience Research Board found that ITV’s Love Island received a 25% boost to its viewership from viewers watching on digital devices.

It may be surprising then to find out that a shortage of digital expertise still persists in the UK labour market. Reboot reports that over half of UK employees lack vital digital skills, while the Department for Culture Media and Sport recently cited the digital skills gap as a ‘major risk to business growth, innovation and broader societal development’.

This gap poses no more immediate threat than to the increasingly digitised broadcast industry, who are faced with a stark choice; either rehire their entire workforce who bring a wealth of experience and talent to the table, or train their existing workforce to meet the challenges digital transformation is bringing to their industry.

For the Group SVP of our client - one of the UK’s major broadcasters – their response 

was clear; ‘we need to ensure that the entire team is well versed on all things digital’, while also securing that their newly upskilled workforce would continue to use their skills to the benefit of the company.

Here’s how this broadcaster combined the power of upskilling with their strongest asset - people - to drive growth.

 

Driving digital knowledge with Circus Street

An effective upskilling strategy relies on investment at all levels of work. As Marc Coleman, Chief Executive of Unleash, explains, ‘learning is not only best taken on board when it can be put into practice straight away’, but for education to be transformed into retention ‘it should deliver value for both the employee and the employer’.

With this in mind, Circus Street collaborated with the client to craft a bespoke learning program that met the specific needs of their industry, while also ensuring the knowledge gathered from the lessons could be embedded into day-to-day work.

Our client fully embraced this concept, delivering a training initiative that was launched to over 367 members of staff. 

From designated learning hours to senior advocates supporting the program, our client embraced an approach filled with knowledge sharing and continuous learning to build a two-way street of communication and development.

The results have been clear. With over 1500 hours of learning completed, the program saw a 64% average knowledge uplift, and for one senior director, the program was invaluable in helping the whole team ‘get a good scope of understanding for the whole digital space’.

Placing our client toe to toe with other global players, our partnership closed the digital skills gap and succeeded in its aim of growing expertise across the whole team. But could an effective upskilling program also unlock a committed and engaged workforce? 

 

Unlocking retention through digital upskilling

The numbers speak for themselves. Since implementing our digital training, our client has seen a 40% decrease in turnover of their Sales Planners and Sales assistants over a 12-month period. With the average cost to hire an employee being around $4000, this means the program saw a significant return of between 150 – 200% on its investment. 

So, what’s the secret? Well, this data falls in line with the widely accepted school of thought that investing in your team is the heart of any growth and retention strategy. 

With disengaged employees costing businesses between $450-550 billion each year, companies cannot afford to ignore a growing need to cater to the shifting priorities of the 21st century worker.

Culture Amp data shows that people who believe their job contributes to their development are 21% more likely to stay with their current employer. While a recent study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers revealed that millennials rank learning and development as the number one benefit that an employer can offer.

The millennial generation – who will soon compromise over 35% of the global workforce – are becoming increasingly renowned for their lack of employer-allegiance. So, investing in your team turbo-charges performance and avoids employers being rocked by sky-high recruitment costs as empowered workers look to find greener pastures. 

By recognising the inherent link between upskilling and retention, our client has created a committed and engaged team ready to use its newly found digital skills base to facilitate better conversations and grow the business. 

In a challenging sector landscape, our collaboration with this broadcaster highlights the two-pronged importance of digital skills training in both upskilling your team while ensuring you have committed and engaged employees. Want to find out how you can do the same?

Contact a member of our sales team to find out how you can stay ahead of the curve.

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