by N. Purcell | Aug. 29, 2023 | 3 Min Read

Nurturing Continuous Learning: Empowering the Deskless Workforce Through Upskilling

Custom Training Solutions for Modern Learners

In today's rapidly evolving business landscape, the concept of work has undergone a significant transformation. The rise of technology, coupled with changing work dynamics, has given birth to a diverse and dynamic workforce - the deskless workforce. Comprising individuals whose work does not revolve around a traditional desk, this workforce segment plays a pivotal role in industries such as retail, hospitality, healthcare, construction, and manufacturing. In this blog post, we'll delve into the intricacies of the deskless workforce, their upskilling and training needs, the challenges they face, and how structural and systemic approaches can cultivate a culture of continuous learning tailored to their unique circumstances.

Understanding the Deskless Workforce:

The deskless workforce encompasses a broad range of professionals who do not operate primarily from a fixed office setting. This includes frontline employees, field workers, sales representatives, healthcare aides, and more. While their job roles differ vastly, they share a common need for upskilling and training to adapt to evolving industry standards, enhance their skills, and contribute to organizational growth.

Upskilling Needs of the Deskless Workforce:

  1. Accessible Learning: Deskless workers often lack access to traditional training methods due to their remote or mobile nature of work. Providing easily accessible digital learning platforms can bridge this gap, offering just-in-time resources that accommodate their schedules.
  2. Role-Relevant Training: Tailoring training content to the specific roles and responsibilities of deskless workers enhances engagement and relevance. For instance, a nurse's training requirements vastly differ from those of a construction worker.
  3. Soft Skills Development: Beyond technical skills, deskless workers require soft skills such as communication, problem-solving, and customer service. These skills are essential for delivering exceptional experiences to clients and customers.

Challenges in Training the Deskless Workforce:

  1. Limited Connectivity: Deskless workers often lack consistent access to the internet or corporate intranets, making it challenging to deliver online training modules or updates in real-time.
  2. Time Constraints: Many deskless workers have demanding schedules that limit their availability for training. Training solutions need to be flexible, fitting into their work routines seamlessly.
  3. Language and Literacy: Addressing language barriers and varying levels of literacy among the deskless workforce requires training content to be presented in diverse formats, including visuals and audio.

Structural and Systemic Approaches to Promoting Continuous Learning:

  1. Mobile Learning Solutions: Leveraging mobile technology allows deskless workers to access training content on their smartphones or tablets, enabling learning on the go.
  2. Microlearning Modules: Bite-sized training modules are ideal for the deskless workforce. These concise sessions deliver focused knowledge without disrupting their work commitments.
  3. Gamification and Incentives: Introducing gamified elements and rewards can enhance engagement and motivation among deskless workers, encouraging them to actively participate in training initiatives.
  4. Peer Learning Networks: Creating platforms where deskless workers can share experiences and insights fosters a sense of community and facilitates knowledge exchange.

Supporting Statistics:

  1. According to a survey by TalentCards, 58% of deskless employees feel they don't receive adequate training, highlighting the gap in upskilling opportunities.
  2. A study conducted by Harvard Business Review found that 70% of deskless workers believed that access to mobile learning would help them be more productive.
  3. The Brandon Hall Group reported that companies using microlearning saw a 50% increase in engagement from deskless workers.
  4. A research paper published in the International Journal of Training and Development emphasized that gamified learning experiences can increase engagement rates by up to 60%.

In conclusion, the deskless workforce represents a vital segment of the modern workforce, deserving of tailored attention when it comes to upskilling and training. While challenges like limited connectivity and time constraints exist, structural and systemic approaches like mobile learning solutions and gamification can revolutionize the way continuous learning is embedded within their work culture. By embracing these strategies, organizations can empower their deskless workers, ensuring they remain adaptable, skilled, and equipped to excel in their roles amidst the ever-changing professional landscape.

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