The Human Capital Development

Whether through nanotechnologies (N), biotechnologies (B), information technologies (I) and cognitive sciences (C), the 4th industrial revolution is shaking up the technological landscape. From now on, these different technological fields of the infinitely small, the manufacture of the living, the thinking machines and the study of the human brain, the NBIC, formerly separated and mutually reinforcing. They introduce disruptive elements into economic models, which go into the evaluator in the field of employment. It is our way of working and learning that is affected.

It is estimated that 65% of children currently enrolled in primary school will be admitted to professions that do not yet exist. This, while by 2020, more key skill levels that will be demanded in the labor market are not yet taken as crucial right now. All these elements justify the urgent implementation of targeted actions designed to reduce the announced gaps and capitalize on the possibilities brought by these upheavals.

Organizational management makes room for teams and networking. If there are still objectives to be defined, development plans to create, individuals to remunerate in their function, recruitments to achieve key jobs, reports to work based on networks, teams, who set together and share the objectives. Leaders are now more specialists than managers; organizations develop their workforce for roles and jobs, ensuring that individuals are transferable from one team to another, from one project to another.

Faced with this new situation, companies must stop behaving like passive consumers, develop a new, more daring mindset by placing talent development and human capital management at the heart of their growth strategy. The potential of technology integrated with human resources goes beyond continuing education, if only in terms of recruitment; from a strong mobile workforce trend, it becomes a constant process that needs to be optimized with intelligent, easy-to-access, demand-driven solutions.

For all stakeholders (governments, organizations, economic and social partners) the 4th industrial revolution can be an opportunity to realize the human potential, redefining the contours of education and work beyond current cultural educational standards which are too limiting. Education and training systems should not lead people to choose a job for life, but rather, provide them with a set of skills throughout their lives that allows them to navigate the world of work .

Beyond fundamental knowledge such as reading and math, it will be necessary to integrate scientific and technological, economic and socio-cultural knowledge. People are also asked to be able to grasp complex problems, which involves working around different skills such as critical thinking, creativity, communication and collaboration. Finally, individuals develop a certain form of self-awareness, through their curiosity, initiative, tenacity, adaptability, leadership and understanding of their socio-cultural environment.

There is no single or fixed way to achieve this, although some tools and strategies are more effective and more accessible in their implementation. Digital technology is one of them, even though most current educational systems rely on models that have existed for a century and are unsuited to the demands of modern life.

Technology must unlock the possibilities of creating personalized and open content, tools for exchange and collaboration, as well as stimulating and even entertaining interactions. Such an offer is already present on fundamental knowledge, but it is still sorely lacking in terms of skills and knowledge.

Ludovic CHEVIRON President



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