Hays UK jobs and employment blog


Investing in skills and teacher training can inspire growth in the classroom post-COVID


An 8.9% reduction in hours worked across the UK in June freed up a potential 94.2 million training hours for the country’s workforce, and research shows leaders who used this time to invest in skills are more confident of recovery post-COVID.  

Research by The Open University has revealed that across the UK, 67% of organisations say learning opportunities were crucial to keeping their workforce agile throughout the pandemic. The education sector is no different, with teachers having to adapt to remote and distance learning, and virtual classrooms.

Now, as schools re-open, headteachers who have invested in skills training for their schools are also likely to see more adaptability among staff as the classroom of the future emerges.

Some of the skills needed to be a teacher are changing

Between April to June 2020, average actual weekly hours across the UK workforce fell by 6.3 hours, compared to the same time last year.

In the education sector, weekly hours worked fell from 28 to 21.6 hours a week, which freed up about 6.4 potential training hours.

By putting a few of these hours to good use, headteachers were able to upskill their staff in new areas. This is key as more reliance is placed on digital, communication and soft skills in today’s classroom.

Moving forward, schools that spend time on upskilling their teams will see the investment pay off as teachers learn how to adapt their approach for a new type of classroom, putting digital skills to use more than ever before. In addition, Hays research shows that soft skills are also more in demand, with 46% of employers in the public sector saying flexibility and adaptability are most needed right now.

Developing talent from within is often more beneficial and cost-effective than replacing existing employees with recruits. At the same time, re-training those whose roles have become redundant helps to close and prevent other critical skills gaps from arising.

A few tips for kickstarting skills training:

  • Tap into the power of online training to support your team members in their upskilling journey.
  • Start fostering a culture of continuous learning, development, and growth in your school.
  • Support teachers as they discover how to best adapt their classrooms for a new approach to teaching, which may combine more virtual education and remote working than ever before.

Keep your staff agile as you prepare your team for the new world of work. A comprehensive online training resource will allow learning at an individual pace.


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