Friday, 10 July 2020 14:27

Skills for the Future

The big story the week was of course the Summer statement from the Chancellor of the Exchequer who set out his spending plan to revitalise the economy as we emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic. With a fiscal stimulus costing billions of pounds, the focus remained very much around job retention and a plan to move on from the furlough scheme.

Amidst a raft of measures which included temporary cuts in Stamp Duty and VAT to support the housing and hospitality sectors, was a sizeable commitment to investment in training. As a training provider we are obviously incredibly pleased to see that the Government has placed so much value on training. However, we must ensure that any such investment isn’t squandered, but properly spent to aid the resurgence of the economy.

What is crucial for organisations as we transcend towards a post-Covid economy, is that they have the right skills in place held by employees who have the qualities that will be needed to survive and thrive in the future. Identifying what those skills needs will be over the next 18 months is key.

A report from Microsoft at the end of April this year suggested that, owing to the effects of Covid-19, we have seen 2 years of digital transformation in just 2 months. Whilst that statistic might be difficult to truly quantify, there is no doubt that we have seen a steep rise in the adoption of some digital technologies. Just look at how we hold meetings now or do our shopping.

Training in digital skills then should be, and is, a high priority. From our own experiences we know that Local Enterprise Partnerships are keen to find solutions for training in digital skills. However what we don’t hear is what those skills explicitly are. Even in a recent report from City & Guilds, reference is only made to ‘basic’ and ‘advanced’ digital skills without any specifics.

Notably, the same report form City & Guilds, ranks Leadership & Management training as second amongst total skills needs across the UK, and when we look at employability in individuals it’s easy to see why.

If we consider again that sudden changes forced upon us by the coronavirus crisis, there are a set of qualities that, in our experience, make an employee more desirable to either recruit, or when redundancies are necessary, to retain. These are:

  • Adaptability – The change to working from home has been one of the greatest tests of adaptability
  • Resilience – Maintaining output and productivity despite the challenges
  • Self-Leadership – Working on one’s own initiative without the need for constant direction or instruction
  • Digital Aptitude – A clear and intuitive grasp of digital technologies

Whilst more inherent than learned, Leadership training will help individuals recognise these qualities in themselves and help managers identify them in other people.

Our programme of Leadership and Management training continues from early August. Full funding is still available for businesses in Bristol and Wiltshire. See the full schedule on our website.

For discussion and advice across all aspects of HR and Employment Law at this time, please call us on 01452 331331 or by e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Read 1497 times Last modified on Friday, 10 July 2020 15:42


HR Champions provide first class HR and Employment Law support and advice to UK businesses; operationally and strategically. If you're an employer you'll potentially need some, if not all, of the services we offer.

We deliver excellent management and soft skills training suitable for all organisational levels. We are ILM and City & Guild accredited and Ken Blanchard approved.  





We are located in Gloucester in the West of the UK close to the M4 and M5 corridors. For a precise map and directions find us on Google Maps

We have clients all over the UK but predominantly within about an hour's drive time of our offices; in Gloucestershire, South Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, Bristol and Swindon & Wiltshire.