Preparing Your Nonprofit Workforce for the Future of Work

When looking at the current work environment, we can see that it requires flexibility, being open to new skills and navigating new ways of working. And depending on where your nonprofit organization is in the digital transformation, there may be a lot to do in preparing your employees for the future of work. More and more organizations have been forced to transition from the manual, hands-on legacy systems to using the cloud—moving employees toward a data-driven culture, embracing machine learning and a number of other technologies.

Here are five tips to help guide your nonprofit organization towards a greater digital transformation in an ever-evolving work and business environment:

1) Recruit for the future: At least a portion of your current workforce will have moved on to other employment in the next 5 to 10 years, so think about succession planning now. Knowing the realities of modern business—it pays to think about how you’ll fill certain positions moving forward—you’ll likely want to focus on recruiting employees who have the skill sets that you need for future roles.

2) Offer upskill, re-skilling and transfer skill opportunities: When employees demonstrate strong aptitude and interest in certain technology, it would be smart to encourage and develop that skill set. Along with offering training for all employees, it’s important to consider the employees that have been loyal to your company may need some re-skilling. Also, don’t forget that employees who will be retiring can offer valuable skills to pass on the next generation. While we live in a world where technology is increasingly required for every aspect of work, soft skills like communication, time management and professionalism will always be needed in the workforce.

3) Become more flexible: Technology isn’t just there to draw you closer to your customer, although that’s a big part of why we’ve embraced it. Being open to other ways that technology can allow for a more flexible work environment, including a new concept of the “workplace” itself, can be very beneficial for your workforce. Let your employees know that these benefits are coming due to the latest technology your organization is adopting.

4) Set guidelines: As we develop larger online footprints, creating content and being active on social channels, it’s important to consider and define where your company stands on personal expression and social media. The line between your employee’s online activity and physical world is continuing to blur. A comment left on Twitter could easily get back to your employer and it may not be received well or taken lightly, based on the context. Take time to think about how you encourage personal expression in the digital world and how it could potentially impact your organization’s brand.

5) Prepare a path for employees to follow: Guide your employees, be a leader. Employees may already have reservations or concerns about how new technology could impact their place in the organization. Your employees need your empathy and support—talk to them about changes to come and listen to their concerns. 

While it’s impossible to know every aspect of what the future of work will look like at your organization, the above tips can be helpful in offering guidance on how to prepare your employees for staying skilled and to maintain a productive work environment. Business leaders can take the time to plan for the future in which training and learning will be the focus however, no one knows exactly what the future of the workforce will hold.

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CB
05/17/21 12:00 AM

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