Friday 22 November 2019
Home      All news      Contact us     
businessinsider - 14 days ago

A Columbia dean says corporations need to create a chief reskilling officer to help anticipate the workforce of the future. Here s how the university is preparing its students.

Companies are pivoting to digital, but staffing up with the talent necessary to make that jump is becoming increasingly difficult. To bypass the talent wars, corporations are investing heavily in reskilling the existing workforce for the jobs of the future. A chief reskilling officer, should be managing that effort, according to Jason Wingard, the dean of the School of Professional Studies at Columbia University. The institution is taking a number of steps to better prepare its students for those future career paths, including a greater emphasis on developing soft skills, like public speaking and leadership. Click here for more BI Prime stories. Companies like Walmart and Honeywell are investing heavily in digital overhauls, hoping to harness the power of artificial intelligence and other advanced tech to automate operations and anticipate customer needs. But managing those projects requires a more advanced skill set, one that is increasingly in short supply. To overcome the talent shortage, organizations are spending significantly to upskill their own workforce. Amazon, for example, pledged to spend $700 million on such an effort, while the National Association of Manufacturers promised to retrain nearly 1.2 million workers. To oversee the development of the future workforce, corporations should appoint a chief reskilling officer, according to Jason Wingard, the dean of the School of Professional Studies at Columbia University. What this new role will be doing is future thinking, future strategy, future alignment with talent and people, he told Business Insider. That differs from the chief human resources officer, which is looking at the here and now, like retainment and compensation. While Wingard was not aware of any companies that currently use such a title, he noted the job is customarily handled now by positions like the chief innovation officer. Outside of the corporations, universities are also having to pick up some of the slack and change their education curriculum to better prepare graduates for the changing demands. It s a key job for Wingard, and one he accomplishes by tapping into his experience as a private consultant for corporations, alongside his past work as the chief learning officer at Goldman Sachs. He recently outlined the changes Columbia University has implemented to give students the foundation to both fill and manage the jobs of the future. An emerging soft skill crisis Increasingly, graduates are incredibly proficient in technical skills like coding, according to Wingard. What is missing, however, are the people who can manage people who do that work. That means being able to meet metrics while also exhibiting creativity in decision making. We need more people who can do that, he said. Those jobs are also increasing in value as they become more scarce. Among finance sector occupations, for example, the average annual wages for positions with soft skills like common sense, judgment, and creativity have risen, according to a new study from IBM Research. To address the gap, Columbia is increasingly matching the technical courses with management training. In the master s program for applied analytics, students learn about coding and data science while developing public presentation skills, which can help future graduates push their AI-based projects internally once they enter the workforce. The reception has been strong. The School of Professional Studies at Columbia is the fastest growing at the university, according to Wingard, a reflection of the shift away from MBAs toward more specific graduate programs. The number of graduates in the School of Professional Studies has risen 253% since 2013, from roughly 2,000 to 7,065. The faculty has also grown from 374 individuals in 2014 to a projected 945 in 2020. Companies like Amazon and Walmart are now looking for somebody who has much deeper and more focused content in a given discipline, he said. That s why we are growing so fast. Push for diversity, lifelong learning Among the feedback that Wingard hears from corporate America is the need for a more diverse workforce including geographic, racial, and gender diversity and skillset. We ve been working on increasing our diversity of students, of faculty, of curriculum to be able to make sure that we re attracting the right students for them, he said. The school, for example, currently has 16 master s programs, including actuarial science, bioethics, and technology management, with two more planned for 2020. Corporations are also eager to make sure that employees are engaging in continual learning opportunities outside of those provided by the organization. That s why Columbia offers digital badges (icons that can be used on social media or email signatures to denote certain credentials), micro-credentials (field specific skills, like email etiquette or applying leadership skills), certificates, and other alternative forms of education beyond a degree. And as companies look to bypass upskilling opportunities and instead hire a greater number of contract workers who can meet the demands of specific projects, they are also turning to places like Columbia who are training those potential works. Those individuals are coming to Columbia to get upskilled on our programming, or on risk management models or other education pathways, Wingard said.Join the conversation about this story NOW WATCH: Taylor Swift is the world s highest-paid celebrity. Here s how she makes and spends her $360 million.


Latest News
Hashtags:   

Columbia

 | 

corporations

 | 

create

 | 

chief

 | 

reskilling

 | 

officer

 | 

anticipate

 | 

workforce

 | 

future

 | 

university

 | 

preparing

 | 

students

 | 
Most Popular (6 hours)

Most Popular (24 hours)

Most Popular (a week)

Sources