Business owners may realise they need to invest in their marketing and sales people, to maximise their capabilities. But identifying skills gaps and prioritising development is never easy, particularly when budgets are tight. The simplest way to do this is to conduct a ‘skills gap analysis’ on your sales and marketing team to identify the appropriate training required to justify your investment.
Use your business goals to identify skills gaps
To remain competitive, you need to maintain a skilled workforce. Assessing the critical skills your sales and marketing team need, allows you to ensure current and future employees possess the right skills to enable optimal business performance. A skills gap analysis generally involves defining the skills required to complete a task and then comparing a person’s/team’s current competency level to that requirement.
Any requirements in team competencies should be aligned with corporate strategy and goals, to ensure everyone is moving towards the same common purpose and vision. For example, if you have aggressive plans for growth in foreign markets, the core competencies your team will need are experience in exporting, marketing strategy, brand positioning and possibly other languages.
What are the gaps?
Performance and skills shortfalls commonly occur in areas such as communication, strategy, creativity, leadership and teamwork. Other typical gaps can involve project management, sales, technical or customer service skills.
Once you’ve identified the gaps between ‘actual requirements vs current competency’, you can interpret these gaps and make recommendations, such as finding suitable training courses to meet your goals and remedy the situation.
Questions to consider:
- What skills does your current sales and marketing team need and want?
- What skills do they already have?
- How significant are the differences between the two?
- How can we define the skills, knowledge or competences required to fill the skills gap/performance shortfall?
Benefits of conducting a skills gap analysis:
You can better identify gaps and performance shortfalls so that you can build highly skilled people and teams. This way, you can link your team’s development to the overall business strategy, and develop the skills you need for future growth and achievement of corporate objectives.
And finally, you need to put in place a means to monitor, review and evaluate the return on the budget spent on training. However, you can maximise your training budget by focusing on critical areas for development, which have been identified in your skills gap analysis.
Can we help you?
We can help you fill the skills gap in your business by sending your team on our Professional Marketing course. With over 25 years’ experience in providing sales and marketing training to businesses, both in-house and via open sales and marketing courses across the UK, we have helped thousands of companies develop their sales and marketing teams, increase productivity and ultimately – revenue.
Furthermore, if you’d like us to design a bespoke course for your Sales and Marketing team why not give us a call on 01423-861-122 or fill in our short contact form – we’d love to help you!
by Mike Smith