Managing Skills Inventory and the challenges

Skills Inventory is a very important data resource for companies. Knowing what skills that employees possess and the proficiency levels in them, how they are deployed, what skills are available and what skills are deficient and such are valuable information that immensely impact businesses.

The management of skills inventory is even more imperative in the knowledge economy. Companies traditionally known for the knowledge intensiveness such as Information Technology have always felt it necessary to manage skills well. These days knowledge as a driver even in traditional companies. And so it is not that they need lesser emphasis on managing skills well.

However, maintaining skills inventory is always a challenge. I do not know how many companies really have such an inventory. At the same time, even those that have created it grapple with the challenge of maintaining it current.

There are two reasons why maintaining skills inventory is a challenge. One, skills are emerging (and fading away too) faster than before. Two, addition and exit of employees is almost a constant.

Finally the issue is of who owns the maintenance of the skills inventory. Is it HR? Or is it the Line Function? If it is HR then are they equipped with appreciation of skills in the line function?

What can be done?

First, we need a simple framework and a tool for capturing and maintaining the skills of employees in the company. One that is simple to use and easy to create and maintain.

Second, this framework should be able to account for the changes in the skills landscape i.e. be current with the latest skills available in its framework.

Third, the skills inventory should be something that employees feel associated with. Feel an involvement with it, involve with it voluntarily and contribute to its maintenance.

How can It’s Your Skills help?

It’s Your Skills offers solutions to companies for maintaining their skills inventory. A simple skills profile framework is offered for creation of skills profile of jobs and of employees (and applicants). It’s Your Skills maintains a Skills Library that is probably the most comprehensive and exhaustive one of its kind.

Users – HR, Managers, employees can all interact with the Skills Profiler to create skills profile. It is easy to use and takes just a few minutes to create.

The skills profiles of employees can be aggregated at organization level to create a skills inventory.

And periodic update whether by way of addition of new employees and their skills and new skills developed by employees can be easily added to ensure that the skills inventory is updated and relevant.

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Ramu heads up the It’s Your Skills team and enjoys being completely hands on with day-to-day operations. An engineer from the Indian Institute of Technology at BHU in Varanasi and with an MBA in HR from XLRI in Jamshedpur, his key objectives are conceptualizing and developing ideas for solutions, driving product development and business strategy. A creative and strategic thinker, Ramu has a rich and distinguished career with almost a quarter of century spent in senior management positions in the IT, FMCG and HR sectors.

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