- Many companies hope to integrate generative AI into their operations, but aren’t sure where to begin
- Generative AI has widened the digital skills gap–but workers who learn how to use it will be at an advantage
- See related article: Workforce training, upskilling in demand among younger adults
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on the Salesforce blog and is reposted here with permission.
Globally, two-thirds of corporate leaders report that their company is looking for ways to use generative AI. Yet the vast majority of businesses aren’t tapping AI to its full potential. In fact, 65 percent of senior IT leaders say they aren’t prepared to implement generative AI right now.
One reason for the holdup is a pervasive skills gap: according to recent research, more than 60 percent of employees say they lack the skills to safely and effectively use generative AI.
The solution is for companies to invest in their people — helping employees skill up so they can thrive in this new landscape and advance their careers.
Bridging the AI skills gap
The digital skills gap is nothing new, but the advent of generative AI has widened the chasm. Today, less than half of employees say they know how to get the greatest value out of generative AI. New job descriptions are emerging daily, and everyone from administrators to sales reps to developers will need AI skills in the coming years.
Companies need workers who understand how to use generative AI to complement and scale their work, engineer prompts, and integrate the technology into roadmaps for new and existing products. They also need people with the skills to ensure generative AI is used ethically, including mitigating biases inherent in the underlying data and protecting security and privacy.
One reason that employees’ digital skills have failed to keep up is that many industries still rely on a traditional educational model. With the rapid pace of innovation, learning can’t stop with a one-time degree. During the pandemic, we saw how quickly workers needed to adapt to rapid digital transformation.
AI is progressing at an even faster rate, creating an urgent need for upskilling. Companies need to provide all employees with opportunities to continuously learn the latest tools and valued skills.
Empowering employees to skill up
Companies have a responsibility to ensure that workers have the skills they need to succeed in the current and future workforce. When it comes to generative AI, 67 percent of workers expect employers to help them learn how to use the technology, but two-thirds say that isn’t happening today.
Business leaders have an opportunity to make their workforces stronger and their companies more resilient by investing in upskilling.
Any employer that wants to provide an accessible pathway for teams to gain in-demand skills can tap Trailhead, Salesforce’s free online learning platform. Trailhead can help anyone from seasoned tech veterans to those just getting started in the industry to learn AI skills at their own pace. Courses cover AI basics, generative AI, the fundamentals of natural language processing, and more. Learners can evaluate progress through fun quizzes and earn badges to demonstrate their knowledge. And beginners and experts alike can find support for honing their skills and growing their careers through the thriving Trailblazer Community.
One inspiring Trailblazer taking her digital skills to the next level is Sandi Nuss Zellner. After a traumatic brain injury forced her to leave her career as a music teacher, Nuss Zellner reinvented herself as an independent Salesforce consultant with a flourishing new career. Now, she’s using Trailhead to master the basics of AI, natural language models, and ethical use of the technology. AI “can really help speed up processing time so we can focus on the human aspects of our jobs,” Nuss Zellner said. “Trailhead helps me understand the questions I need to consider before I jump straight into using AI.”
An inclusive learning pathway
Generative AI presents massive opportunities for businesses and workers alike. Yet it’s up to companies to close the AI skills gap and democratize access to needed skills and training.
Employees who can harness the power of generative AI can get more done faster and spend extra time on rewarding, meaningful work. They’ll be at a major advantage when it comes to serving customers, driving innovation, and making their companies stronger. Trailhead makes it simple for all learners — of any age, background, or geographic location — to become part of the AI revolution.
- Read new research on the AI skills gap
- Learn AI skills on Trailhead
- Read more about sales and service teams perspectives on generative AI
- Read more about marketers’ perspectives on generative AI
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