Only 55 percent of employees are confident in their organisation’s future prioritisation of new skilling opportunities for them, according to Cornerstone’s 2022 global research study.

Compared to the 2021 results, employee confidence decreased with 49 percent saying they were confident in their organisation developing new opportunities for them.

The research also found that 59 percent of UK employers signalled that significant prioritisation of skills development was expected to occur or had already begun.


Widening gap

According to the 2022 survey data, this gap widened for average and low performing organisations.

While employer confidence in their ability to understand and deliver on their needs rose in the recent report, employee confidence decreased by five points, with just 55 percent of employees saying that their organisation’s skills development was a priority.


Employers and employees aren’t fully aligned on current skills focus

There continues to be a significant Skills Confidence Gap between employers and employees when it comes to confidence in their organisation’s current ability to help them develop new skills. This gap not only persisted from 2020, but – on average – grew wider.


Employees are not confident their companies are prioritising skills in the future

The research revealed that only 55 percent of employees are confident in their organisation’s future prioritsation of new skilling opportunities for them.


The Skills Confidence Gap narrowed or widened depending on organisational strength

High-performing organisations (HPOs) had a much smaller gap between employees and employers. HPOs not only prioritised skill development at a much higher level than their peers, but their employees also agreed with them — with only an 11 percent gap between employer and employee perception.

Meanwhile, Laggards (low-performing organisations) not only rated their prioritisation of skill development much lower, but less than 20 percent of employees in those organisations also agreed that skills development is an important objective — a 42 percent gap.


CEO of Cornerstone, Himanshu Palsule:

“The latest research by the Cornerstone People Research Lab demonstrates how organisations and their people continue to see skills development as an increasingly important part of navigating their shared future successfully.”

“Unfortunately, there continues to be a growing gap between how organisations view their ability to deliver on skills development and how employees are experiencing it.”


The Path Forward

To reduce the employee-employer Skills Confidence Gap and address uncertainty, the 2022 report outlines practical steps organisations can take to build high impact future skills, including how to:

  • Predict future skills your organisation will need and identify potential skills gaps among your people
  • Integrate intelligent skills technology into other career development tools that your organisation is already using or should be using
  • Foster a learning culture that prioritises skill-building and empowers people to grow
  • Strategise and deliver more relevant, modern and personalised learning content to your people
  • Adopt an internal-first hiring mindset to encourage skills development and career growth

“To prepare their workforce for the future, organisations increasingly need to take a skills-forward approach to learning and talent — identifying what skill gaps exist, which skills will be needed in the future and a relevant, engaging path that enables their people to more effectively build those skills,” says Chief Product Officer at Cornerstone, Ajay Awatramani.

“That’s exactly what we do at Cornerstone. We build our solutions with skills technology at the centre to help our customers create fully connected people experiences where skills are a common language of development and career success,” adds Awatramani. 

In many cases, the pandemic exacerbated or accelerated issues that already limited organisational ability to adapt and change.

Long-term talent shortages and new challenges, like the rapid pace of digital transformation, are asserting themselves and threatening many organisations’ ability to execute, grow and innovate.