Research by leading online education provider Upskillist has found that while 70% of employees define their sense of purpose by their work, only 20% are fully engaged in their current roles.
This data is based on a report that surveyed over 170,000 Upskillist users and focused on the impact of soft skills on employee productivity and workplace happiness.
Soft skills are attributes that enable employees to interact effectively and harmoniously with their colleagues in the workplace.
The term covers personality, character traits, attitudes, ethics, social and emotional intelligence, and other intangible human qualities.
Upskillist’s research highlighted that while technological advances like AI can help businesses run more smoothly,
many areas still exist where machines and technology cannot replace human interactions – and in these situations, employees with good soft skills are crucial.
The report also unpacks the ways in which prioritising these soft skills can provide significant value to businesses – paying particular attention to the following:
- Improved staff retention rates – Businesses that invest in comprehensive onboarding programmes and provide strong learning opportunities will have happy employees who don’t want to leave.
- Improved teamwork and team bonds – 44% of respondents said they had received insufficient training to deal with workplace conflicts, and this can hurt employee morale.
- Improved employee performance and satisfaction – Dissatisfied employees show inferior work output levels.
- Boosted productivity – Soft skills like time management, planning, organising, and stress management can help your employees be more productive.
- More effective communication – 67% of employees don’t feel very confident to give or receive criticism to or from subordinates and managers – which limits opportunities for constructive feedback.
- Better collaboration – Compassionate leaders get the most out of their subordinates by increasing motivation and job satisfaction.
Upskillist has used its research to provide various tips to recruiters, HR practitioners, and learning and development managers about optimising talent acquisition and development by considering soft skills.
The report also explains how training programmes that focus on soft skills can provide impressive value to businesses if they are of high quality and are completed by interested and willing employees.