May 19 2023

Knowledge 2023: The Benefits of Upskilling Employees from ServiceNow Leadership

Chief People Officer Jacqui Canney and Senior Vice President Amy Regan Morehouse discuss the company’s focus on breaking down silos and building skills.

Customer Zero: That’s how ServiceNow refers to itself as a user of its own platform, says Jacqui Canney, the company’s chief people officer.

One of the things ServiceNow has found as a result is a focus on employee growth and development. The importance of skills in today’s workplace is impossible to overlook. Canney and Amy Regan Morehouse, ServiceNow’s senior vice president of global education, both emphasized skills development in their conversations with BizTech magazine during Knowledge 2023 in Las Vegas.

While Canney looked at the big picture and the specific use case of ServiceNow as Customer Zero, Morehouse outlined the company’s ongoing initiatives to upskill the workforce.

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Skills Are Currency in the Modern Workplace

“You see more conversation now around skills being the currency for growth, so you can progress in a career not because of arbitrary hurdles,” Canney says.

Looking at skills in this way helps frame ServiceNow’s RiseUp initiative, a program that provides training for in-demand skills through partnerships with businesses, universities and government entities.

“It’s about looking at who has an aptitude to get a job in tech,” Morehouse says. “We’re working with nonprofits that are focused on moms who are trying to work or veterans who are trying to work or anybody who never saw themselves in tech. Those groups help mentor and support people as they’re learning something new.”

DISCOVER: Build a skilled workforce and meet employee expectations.

Bringing this training within reach for thousands of employees and job applicants is also benefiting organizations. Technology touches nearly every job today, and many employers are finding it difficult to hire and retain talent with the skill sets they need.

And, as technology continues to evolve at lightning speed, many of those skill sets will revolve around flexibility and ongoing learning. Five years ago, it was impossible to train workers on the artificial intelligence technology of today, yet many jobs demand skills in AI. In the same way, it will be impossible to develop skills now that will be needed five years in the future.

“Regardless of what those jobs are, we need to make sure those core human skills — collaboration, innovation, creativity, asking questions and critical thinking — are the foundational skills of the future, then layer the new tech on top,” Morehouse says.

Jacqui Canney
You see more conversation now around skills being the currency for growth, so you can progress in a career not because of arbitrary hurdles.”

Jacqui Canney Chief People Officer, ServiceNow

Digital Transformation Requires a Mindset Shift

In many ways, the technologies of today require a mindset shift. Internally, organizations need to break down silos between departments. As an enterprise service management platform, ServiceNow makes it easier for every employee in a company to work together efficiently, Canney says.

“It goes across not just departments but the entire company, and it defines the employee experience,” she says.

Not only does the ServiceNow platform integrate the workflows across companies, but it can also facilitate employees’ potential for upward mobility within the organization. “When it comes to employee growth and development, I believe the technology has finally caught up with where HR wants to go on skills, on career journeys, on learning and development,” Canney says, adding that having employees’ data is an important metric.

READ MORE: How upskilling employees can give your organization a competitive edge.

The prevalence of technology requires employers to make a mindset shift too. Looking at skills as currency, employers need to move away from requiring years of experience when they screen and hire candidates.

Mandating years of experience excludes candidates who are re-entering the workforce, and it could exclude candidates with the skills employers need.

To overcome this, and to push for the needed mindset shift, ServiceNow unveiled a new job portal this week that connects candidates with employers based on skills, Morehouse says. As people build skills through RiseUp, Talent Connect aims to find them the right jobs while filling gaps in the IT workforce.

“The Talent Connect portal allows employers to put in the profile of the skills they’re looking for and automatically connect with job-ready talent,” Morehouse says.

Bookmark this page to follow all of BizTech’s Knowledge 2023 coverage, and follow along on Twitter at @BizTechMagazine.

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