Employee development in the context of digitalization – Part 2

In our first part on employee development in the context of digitisation, we have examined in more detail how learning for employees will change in the digital working world. Lifelong learning is therefore a basic prerequisite. Regular learning in small units and independent further training within the framework of everyday working life are essential. HR management must ensure that employees have the necessary resources and structures at their disposal. In the second part you will therefore learn which challenges the HR department has to master.

HR Management must be set up anew

In order to meet the new requirements within the framework of the digital transformation, the HR department must first reorganize itself. Only if the change process already begins in Human Resource Management and the new structures are established here, can the employees in this area also act as pioneers. The personnel department must first have sufficient employees to coordinate and support developments and adjustments in the company. Furthermore, it is also necessary for the personnel managers themselves to acquire new, digital skills through employee development. Being a role model in lifelong learning.

Personal – digital skills developer

People management must ensure that all employees have the opportunity to expand their digital skills . The majority of companies are convinced that it is a decisive competitive advantage that employee development is designed in such a way that it can cope with their new tasks and areas of competence in digitization.

In order to promote lifelong learning among employees, HR management has a wide range of options at its disposal. On the one hand, working hours and structures must be designed in such a way that there is sufficient freedom for further training , without employees having to compensate for this by overtime. This means that goals, responsibilities, contact persons and a corresponding personnel key must be defined and maintained. Nothing is more demotivating than pushing overtime just to be able to train further.

On the other hand are training on the job, training by colleagues, reskilling and upskilling Possibilities for competence development . In addition, the recruitment of employees offers a further method to bring still missing competences from outside into the company which are important for the digital transformation.

Employee development as a challenge for HR management

To meet these requirements, HR management faces a number of challenges. First of all, it is important to establish a comprehensive and structured change management in order to advance digitization and establish a digital mindset. It is essential to manage the increasingly complex cooperation within a company and to adapt the working time models and work structures to the new circumstances . At the same time, personnel managers must motivate employees to adapt to the new requirements, learning models and changes.

Personnel managers must analyse at an early stage and continuously which competences will be important in the future and advise employees proactively how they can acquire these competences. Subsequently, it is important to support the employees in building up these skills. Soft skills such as critical thinking, leadership strength, creativity and emotional intelligence must also be taught to employees.

To do this justice, the HR department, together with management, IT and facility management, must ensure that the working environment is designed accordingly . In a new “Digital Workplace”, employees should have the opportunity to train themselves everywhere and at any time and to acquire the necessary digital skills. Finally, the flexibilisation of work structures and the further development of corporate culture are also moving to the forefront of HR work.


The digitalization brings new challenges and requirements for both employees and HR management . It is becoming increasingly important to train and educate existing employees accordingly and to provide them with lifelong learning in small units at the workplace. Employee development is thus one of the success factors in the digitalisation of the world of work.

People managers must ensure that the necessary structures are available in the company and that working time models are flexible. Above all, it is important to set a good example for employees and to actively promote and motivate them in the change process of digitalization. HR management as a developer of digital competences is one of the most important pillars to enable employees to learn lifelong, to continue their education independently and to acquire the necessary digital competences.

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