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Training will be a top workplace priority in the year ahead, Deloitte says

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As hiring challenges continue, private companies plan to place a priority on reskilling during the next 12 months, according to Deloitte’s Dec. 12 private company outlook report on talent strategies.

To be more competitive, companies are also focused on skills-based hiring, hybrid work and new compensation strategies.

“As private companies juggle limited cash flow, aspirations for digital transformation and efforts to increase productivity, they’re relying on their own workforce to meet their business priorities,” Wolfe Tone, vice chair and U.S. Deloitte private leader, said in a statement.

“Private companies are leaning into reskilling in combination with skills-based hiring and hybrid work as part of a broader portfolio of talent strategies,” he said.

In a survey of 100 private company executives, 60% said cash flow may limit their ability to hire in the next 12 months. About 78% of C-suite leaders with annual revenues of $100 million to under $200 million expressed this sentiment, as compared with 41% of those at companies earning more than $1 billion.

Looking ahead, executives’ main business priorities include increasing productivity and investments in technology. To meet these priorities, leaders placed an emphasis on top skills such as information technology (excluding AI and cybersecurity), sales and marketing and supply chain.

To meet talent needs in the coming year, company executives said they’ll rely heavily on training and reskilling (43%), followed by hiring (26%), using contract workers (19%) and automation (12%).

To compete for talent, more than half of leaders said their organization plans to increase skills-based hiring, followed by hybrid work and implementing a new compensation strategy.

Learning and development offerings could help companies stay competitive as well. More than half of workers have indicated their companies don’t offer learning or training opportunities that would allow them to advance, according to an eLearning Industry report.

Training can also aid internal mobility, which has dropped in recent years after a peak in 2020, according to a report from The Josh Bersin Co. Encouraging internal mobility may boost employer flexibility and retention as well.

In 2024, 75% of CHROs surveyed said they plan to focus their human capital management strategies on employee experience and organizational culture, according to a report from The Conference Board. The majority also said they want to develop leadership skills and workforce capabilities.

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