- Frontline workers remained committed to receiving online training amid COVID-19 pandemic, according to Axonify. In North America, workers in essential industries completed an additional 3 million daily training sessions on its platform between March and July 2020, on top of an average of two to three sessions completed per user per week, the company announced Aug. 19.
- The additional training resulted in a 10% increase in employee knowledge in topics such as health and safety protocols and company processes, according to Axonify. In the early stages of the pandemic, the company expanded content relevant to frontline workers on its platform, such training on hygiene and change management. From March through July, 21 million learning questions were answered by Axonify users globally "based on more than 20 new COVID-19-related topics," the company said in the announcement.
- From May through July 2020, Axonify found that about 77% of training sessions globally were completed on a mobile device. "As the workforce roles have changed, our data reveals the frontline employees that did have access to training were incredibly committed to training and acquiring the most relevant knowledge to do their jobs safely and efficiently," Axonify CEO Carol Leaman said in a statement.
Employers should provide workers in essential industries opportunities to upskill and reskill amid the pandemic, according to experts. Lawmakers have introduced legislation to aid employers in providing training.
The Upskilling and Retraining Assistance Act, introduced by Sens. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., and Todd Young, R-Ind., Aug. 4, aims to incentivize employer education assistance programs, which would assist in the hiring and retaining of workers who lost their jobs due to the pandemic. The senators proposed that for the next two years, the legislation would update the tax code through ordering an emergency expansion of the tax inclusion from $5,250 to $12,000. The cost of employee training and essential tools such as computers would be covered by the bill as well.
Microsoft is one company focused on upskilling job seekers through its global skills initiative. A platform launched in June provides access to content from LinkedIn Learning, identifies real-time labor market data and skills insights, provides job seeking tools for in-demand positions and offers low-cost Microsoft Certifications, among other offerings. The company has a goal to increase the digital skills of 25 million people worldwide by the end of 2020.
The pandemic has modified the skills employers are trying to develop within their workforces, according to Sari Wilde, managing vice president in Gartner's HR practice. "A crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic challenges L&D to become more responsive to business needs," Wilde told HR Dive in a previous interview. "We see L&D functions doing more dynamic skills-sensing and scenario planning to consider different options for skill needs and learning delivery."