How does your organization stay relevant?


4 minuten


The world is digitizing at a rapid pace. Fortunately, more and more organizations are realizing that a wait-and-see attitude can prove problematic. Think, for example, of V&D, D-Reizen and Kodak: large concerns that have not responded to the digital transformation in time. To keep your organization healthy and viable, it is extremely important, today and in the future, to keep reinventing yourself and maintain your relevance in the market. But how do you do that? Especially if your organization is not really concerned with the digital age at all because it has never really been relevant to you.

A few important questions an organization can ask itself: Does it still make sense to continue advertising in print media if your target audience has moved en masse to social media? Shouldn’t you start doing something with your quoting process when potential customers defect to the competitor. These days, you can have a quote online in minutes instead of waiting two weeks for it. In this case, the customer makes the quote themselves instead of the inside salesperson. How useful is a large sales force anymore if most sales are through digital channels? How do you optimize business processes when you see that you are being passed on all sides by young, enthusiastic startups, whose founders grew up in a digital world?

Actually, the solution is quite simple, but at the same time super tricky. It has to do with the creative striking power of an organization and a strong training policy. To remain relevant in your own market, it will therefore not even always be about innovation within your product or service portfolio: A carpentry company does carpentry, and a consultancy firm advises. Digitalization is mainly in how you offer your products and services and how efficiently you can do this. So what do you need for that?

Make and keep your staff relevant

Your organization is relevant when your employees are relevant. Your employees are your “key assets”. Without them, nothing happens. So to stay ahead of your competition, or to stay relevant as a nonprofit, you need to make sure your staff continues to develop themselves. But how do you tackle that? It is no longer enough for people to simply take a few online courses. Why not? Because most training courses do not connect well with the individual knowledge levels of the employees, nor with the (business) processes of your organization. Of course, some of the basics can be purchased just fine through a standard online training course. But how does knowledge stick? By repeating and applying the knowledge directly to practice. This usually does not happen with a generic course. Employees still need to convert and adapt the general knowledge to the applicable processes. This takes an unnecessary amount of time so that knowledge gained is quickly forgotten.

Making learning more fun and easy

So how do you keep your staff relevant? By continuing to invest in new, relevant digital skills in your employees. Getting people excited and exposing them to new, fresh ideas makes learning fun and a lot easier. There are a number of things you can address to ensure this relevance:

01. Invest in a diverse and inclusive workforce. Make sure young and old find each other. Make sure your workforce is a reflection of society. This is how you create an open and pleasant working atmosphere where everyone can be themselves. By providing this safety, your employees will be stimulated to come up with creative ideas and actively think about improving business processes. You can read more about this in our article Prioritizing Diversity.

02. Make sure your employees can continue to develop themselves at the level that suits them. For example, you can think about having customized training developed for your organization and the various levels of education your organization has. Want to know more about this topic? Then read our article on Lifelong Learning: Necessity rather than luxury.

03. As a matter of principle, make sure your employees never become irrelevant. A study by Oxford University and Artificial Intelligence expert Kai-Fu Lee stated in the CBS program 60 Minutes to expect that more than 40% of jobs will no longer exist within 25 years. Then think of jobs such as warehouse worker, payroll clerk, translators, tax consultants, real estate agents, bookkeepers, cashiers, etc. Try to get ahead of this and make sure that employees who have a position that may eventually become obsolete are already preparing themselves for a retraining program. Determine together how positions can be created or how employees can move into other positions. The next step is to take care of the appropriate retraining.

Help! Where to start.

Young_Coders created specifically for this issue. A beautiful and well-organized platform in which we offer customized training and guidance on a personal level. All of our training courses are fully geared to the needs of our customers and guide trainees in developing the necessary technical knowledge and skills to update or retrain themselves. Curious? Come and have a (virtual) cup of coffee! We are happy to explain more about it.




Koen is a marketer and communication specialist. He writes about, among other things, Design Thinking, the IT labor market and innovation.