What are the skills of the future and how can we prepare?

Top10 books on a desert island
Top 10 books to bring to a desert island
January 27, 2022
UN partners with Xerox
UN partners with Xerox to make printing greener
February 8, 2022
Skills of the future

More than half of us will need reskilling by 2025, according to a skills report by the World Economic Forum. The Business Optimizer team explores which skills will be in demand.

The Future of Jobs report by the World Economic Forum has found that 50% of all employees will require reskilling by 2025. It says the double disruption of the economic impacts of the pandemic and increasing automation are, together, transforming jobs – and the skills required to do them.

Millions of jobs will change by 2025

The World Economic Forum estimates that 85 million jobs may be displaced by the shift in the division of labour between humans and machines.

However, the Forum says that even more jobs may emerge that are adapted to this new relationship between humans and machines. It estimates 97 million such jobs may emerge by 2025.

As a result, employees will need to gain the technical and soft skills required to thrive in this new working environment.

Which skills are going to be in demand?

The World Economic Forum surveyed employers to find out what skills they expect to require in the future. Topping the list were:

  • Critical thinking
  • Problem solving.

In the latest survey, new skill requirements emerged in employers’ wish lists, probably reflecting the changes happening as a result of the pandemic. Employers are also prioritising self-management skills such as:

  • Active learning
  • Resilience
  • Stress tolerance
  • Flexibility

Furthermore, data that the survey drew on from LinkedIn and the online learning platform Coursera revealed a demand for additional specialised skills, including:

  • Product marketing
  • Digital marketing
  • Human-computer interaction

How long will it take to acquire the skills that are in demand?

According to the World Economic Forum report, employers expect staff to learn these new skills as part of their working roles.

However, this will require those employers to allow for the time and investment into learning so their workforces can prepare and gain the new skill sets that will be required in the future.

Coursera estimates that:

  • it can take as little as a month to gain skills in content writing, sales and marketing.
  • it can take two months to improve skills in product development, data or artificial intelligence.
  • it would require a four-month learning programme to make it possible to move into new roles in cloud or engineering.

World Economic Forum Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab suggests technology holds the key to preparing for the new jobs being created by our new relationship with it. He commented, “the bounty of technological innovation which defines our current era can be leveraged to unleash human potential.”

Would you like to read more?