Experience, Qualifications and Instinct: Essential Soft Skills For The Workforce

21st August 2017

The workplace is changing – a broad statement, but nevertheless wholly true.

Research is highlighting a shift in both the skills expected by employers and the career demands of their employees. Digital literacy aside, transferable soft skills are becoming one of the cornerstones of organisations of all sizes.

Is it a case of recognition of prior learning for the individual or one of workplace training for the whole team? And which qualifications are actually best?

The Workplace Trainer’s Viewpoint

We spoke to TAFE Queensland educator and workplace trainer. Anthony Wall to zero in on what employers should be looking for and what employees can do to match expectations:

“The main qualifications I see businesses needing are primarily project management and leadership qualifications, at the diploma level at least.

These qualifications position staff and candidates with the base level formal qualifications required to be job ready to tackle the business challenges facing almost all organisations. These are needed to execute change within the organisation via a disciplined project management approach. Or in other words, they allow for a higher degree of confidence, autonomy and flexibility from one staff member to the next.

As for the employees themselves, this is where RPL comes into play.

Many remark to me that RPL represents to them a stocktake of their career to date, as the RPL process requires them to reflect on their achievements so far, ensures their CV is current, and finally gather the workplace evidence in order to demonstrate this. Finally getting the third party report provides that final endorsement from their managers they have demonstrated that experience in their current or previous roles.

Employers and their staff in turn look to organisations that have a reputation for solid delivery in business related qualifications, and I believe that we certainly meet that criteria. I've completed a number of RPLs for students from all over the country. They come to us because of our name. “

The Data

For the employer

Recruiting firm Hays polled 6537 Australians in 2016 - 69 per cent of whom said they intended to stay with their employer for more than five years—and would, if their employer gave them the right training to help their careers progress.

The 2016 Deloitte Millennial Survey, which focused on Gen Y in the workplace, agreed. Sixty-six per cent said they planned to leave their present employer by 2020 – but 65% said they’d stay for more than five years if they received support or training progress their careers and leadership opportunities.

For the individual

The Committee for Economic Development of Australia reminds us that gaining those skills that no computer can match will get you across the line every time. Pick up that added bit of creativity, master projects, refine your leadership style – it’s quicker and easier than it sounds.

RPL from TAFE Queensland can get you there sooner. Even for employers, this is the solution to bolster the skills and confidence of whole teams sooner.

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