What is Upskilling and Why is it important?

What is Upskilling and Why is it Important?

3 white with opened laptops in an upskilling class


The biggest room in the world is the room for improvement.  No matter the height of your knowledge in a field, it is very important to up your skill; Upskill. The current job market is characterized by technological advancements and rapid changes in industries. Hence, the concept of upskilling has emerged as a key driver for personal and professional development to help companies and individuals meet up with these current trends.

What is Upskilling?

Upskilling is the process of either learning new skills or reskilling existing ones to adapt to the evolving demands of the career market. Upskilling could be done individually or through companies that train their workforce. Irrespective of how it’s done, continuous upskilling is important to remain in competition in an ever-changing job market.

Why is Upskilling Important?

The answer to the above is as clear as day. However, l think Nokia has the best reply to this since she learned the hard way. They literally ‘no care’ (pun intended). The Nokia company used to be a pacesetter in the mobile phone industry, but not anymore. The inability of the company and its workforce to meet up with current technological trends relegated her to the back seat.

As technology improves, skill gaps are automatically created for people who don’t upskill. The scenario created is synonymous to living in the past. In an era when your target audience uses search engines to find articles, imagine a content writer who hasn’t sought the knowledge of Search Engine Optimization(SEO). Apart from meeting up with the requirements of the current job market, here are other reasons why upskilling is important.

1. Employability Enhancement

There’s a cordial link between upskilling and improved employability. Every employer values workers who are committed to continuous learning. Upskilling helps individuals be more adaptable and versatile in their roles. What do you think of a worker who can only use a typewriter but not a keyboard in this day and age?

2.  Economic Benefits

Studies show that workers get a pay rise when they upskill. This is because upskilling improves your professional competence to handle higher roles, hence higher pay. For companies, an upskilled workforce contributes enormously to the economic growth and innovation of the establishment.

3. Globalization and Competition

 The world is now a global village. In an era where geographical location doesn’t affect how you can hone your skills.Individuals and companies who upskill not only remain competitive locally but also position themselves as global contenders in the world market. It’s safe to say that upskilling widens your horizon of either individuals or organizations.

4  Continuous Relevance

 When the reason for the existence of a subject ceases, the subject ceases with the reason. As an individual or company, you’re only important or relevant because you meet up with the needs of those who desire your services. Individuals and companies that don’t upskill lose their relevance very fast. Why should an individual wait to be laid off at his/ her workplace when they can’t just upskill?

5.  Easy accomplishment of tasks

Most technological advancements are aimed at making life easier and better for mankind. We now use easier means of transportation rather than walking. Technology has positively impacted all areas of our existence. It has helped us to achieve insurmountable tasks and made difficult tasks less challenging. It’s absurd to stress over manual computation of numbers when new technologies can add billions of numbers in seconds.

How can you Upskill?

Upskilling can be very challenging for those who don’t know how to go about it. Many individuals have a positive mindset toward upskilling in order to elevate their career. However, they have a hard time figuring out how to. In light of this, below are actionable steps on how to upskill effectively and boost your professional growth.

1. Assess your current skill set and identify areas that need improvement. This assessment forms the foundation for targeted upskilling.

2. Research the skills that are in high demand in your industry.

3. Define your clear and realistic upskilling goals. Setting specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals will keep you focused and motivated.

4. Take advantage of online learning platforms. Platforms like Coursera, LinkedIn Learning, and Udemy can  provide accessible and flexible programs to acquire new skills.

5. Connect with professionals in your industry and seek guidance. Networking can open doors to valuable insights, opportunities, and mentors…

6. Apply your knowledge in online courses to real-world scenarios, projects, internships and open-source initiatives to solidify your skills. Practical application enhances your understanding and showcases your capabilities.

7. The pace of change in many industries requires a continuous commitment to learning. Endeavor to stay informed about industry trends, advancements, and new technologies.

8. Apart from technical skills, soft skills like effective communication, teamwork adaptability, and many others are becoming increasingly crucial. Cultivate these skills for a well-rounded professional profile.

9. Seek feedback from your peers, mentors, or instructors. Constructive feedback helps you identify areas for improvement and ensures that you are on the right track for your future.

10. Showcasing your skills and displaying achievements helps to attract potential employers and collaborators. Make sure to create a professional online presence either through LinkedIn or a personal website to hone your skills.


Upskilling is not just a choice but a necessity in the competitive job market. It is important to embrace a proactive approach to your career by continually acquiring new skills, ultimately ensuring long-term success and fulfillment in your professional journey.

Apart from the fact that upskilling allows you to stay abreast of career advancement. It also improves employability, relevance, and your overall career prospects. Additionally, it comes with some economic benefits, a wider horizon of employment as well as global opportunities. 

This article is your much-needed wake-up call to embrace a proactive approach towards improving your skills. Upskilling is best achieved by setting clear goals, leveraging available resources, and showcasing your skill set online. These steps will position you for success in your current and future job endeavors. Remember, investing in your skills is an investment in your future career!

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