Sandbox is excited to debut this guest blog post, Upskilling Best Practices, written by the team at Botree. Botree is a valued partner at SBX and are always striving to improve the way our business community does work.

So, without further adieu, continue reading to find out more about how you can upskill your workplace with the best practices listed below! 

Upskilling is definitely a buzzword these days. We’ve all seen it. Organizations are often told to focus on upskilling, and for good reason. But what is upskilling? How can upskilling help your business?

What does upskilling mean?

Upskilling is when an employee learns new skills and enhances existing ones to adapt to changes.

The pandemic has brought many changes to the workforce. Most offices switched to fully virtual, some now adopting a hybrid approach to working from home. With those changes, employees have had to adapt and change with the times to keep up with the evolving expectations of their job. By upskilling, employees have learned new skills such as navigating virtual sales.

Why upskilling is important?

6 in 10 employees surveyed say that the pandemic has accelerated their need for upskilling. More than half of the workers surveyed said their current skill set has become obsolete. The reality is, workers are likely to leave their job if the employers don’t invest in their development. Organizations should use upskilling to avoid a talent mass exodus. Upskilling brings many benefits to both employees and the company in general, including:

  • Keeping valuable employees engaged

  • Preparing for any future disruptions

  • Strengthens teams through collaboration

  • Boosts employee retention + satisfaction

  • Reduces cost of new hires (did you know that replacing a current salary can cost 2x the salary?)

What skills should be upskilled?

Any skill that benefits the employee and organization can and should be upskilled. Especially now, you should be focusing your employee training in the following areas:

  • Communication: stronger teams can collaborate and overcome obstacles more effectively

  • Critical / Creative thinking: curiosity makes for high tolerance and problem-solving abilities post-pandemic

  • Wellbeing: foster resilience, lower rate of burnout

  • Technology: prepared for an even more virtual future

Ways to upskill:

  • Identify Future Skills

Think of your organization’s objectives, What critical skills will your workers need in the coming years?

  • Assess Skills

In order to best measure progress, it is important to set a baseline of current abilities.

  • Set Upskilling Goals:

Make S.M.A.R.T goals with set targets

  • Map Learning to Skills (team-based, peer to peer, on the job):

We know the what, now you figure out how you will achieve it.

  • Measure Skill Progress:

Compare progress to the established baseline of abilities.

  • Match Skills to Opportunities:

Provide opportunities for employees to step up and show their skills.

  • Communicate Metrics of Success:

Show how upskilling has impacted your organization and the work of the employee.


Botree is a business advisory and training group that engages organizations to reach their inherent potential and achieve sustainable growth. They specialize in supporting your people, optimizing your processes and creating customized solutions that support the evolution of your organization through communication, education and efficiency. Based in Ontario, Canada, they provide our services to clients across North America.

interested in upskilling your team? check out the DEVELOPING NOTEWORTHY MANAGERS program

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