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State of Upskilling 2021

by Shelley Osborne, Author of The Upskilling Imperative


Before the pandemic, upskilling was a priority for many organizations, but it's clear that it has now become a business imperative. There's a significant uptick in the percentage of the workforce being upskilled or reskilled compared to the previous year. This, according to the data, is driven mostly by a growing number of organizations recognizing the skills gap and their responsibility to fill it.



The increase in upskilling across the globe is impressive and inspiring. But there's plenty of room to grow for learning and development (L&D) in 2021. While over half of survey respondents report being satisfied with their organization's L&D program, almost half are either dissatisfied or indifferent to their program.


When asked to rate the maturity of their program, however, a bright spot emerges. A large number of organizations would be considered mature with Bersin's Learning Organization Maturity Model.


More than half of survey respondents (58%) reported that their organization's learning and development program is at level 3 or 4, the highest levels of maturity. These organizations empower their workforce to drive their own development and have integrated learning into the flow of work.


But close to half of organizations (42%)

reportedly have fairly traditional approaches to learning and development. What's keeping them — and even the most mature learning and development programs — from achieving their goals? According to our survey, lack of time was reported to be the biggest obstacle.





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