Calling multilingual job candidates in Czechia: Upskilling can unlock a new career

The Czech Association of Business Service Leaders supports training and education that helps bridge the growing skills gap.

William Nattrass

Written by William Nattrass Published on 01.06.2023 07:30:00 (updated on 01.06.2023) Reading time: 4 minutes

With the rapid rise of new technologies, companies in Czechia face a growing skills gap. Currently, there is an urgent need to reskill or upskill employees in the areas of technology and data analytics as well as a strong need to strengthen leadership and other soft skills.

As the world becomes ever more connected, and with the rise of powerful artificial intelligence technologies, demand for employees in these fields has ballooned.

“With the rise of artificial intelligence, continued digitization, and the adoption of new innovations, the knowledge and skills requirements of employees are changing,” says Jonathan Appleton, Director of the Czech Association of Business Service Leaders (ABSL).

Curious about what skills are needed to launch a career in business services and how to elevate leadership skills? ABSL is hosting an Open Day together with the University of New York in Prague (UNYP) Prague on June 15. The event is open to all those interested in working in the sector or who may like to join one of the educational programs offered by ABSL and UNYP to become a successful leader in the new digital era. Free registration is open here

Due to the fact that the business services industry provides services in 28 languages, the sector has plenty of job opportunities to offer the Czech Republic’s linguistically diverse expat population.

Bridging the skills gap and supporting employers and their potential employees with educational programs is currently one of ABSL’s central focuses.

“According to our survey employees and, consequently, companies are particularly lacking skills in the areas of robotic automation implementation, data analytics, languages, and leading innovation projects and teams. These disciplines are not yet widely available on the training market, which is why two-thirds of centers develop their training programs in-house,” Appleton adds.

The demand for data analysts is surging

The most significant shortfall in skills identified by the ABSL survey is related to artificial intelligence and automation technologies as well as to data analytics.

While AI and automation are the most obvious ways in which technology is changing business services, data analysts have become central to businesses’ decision-making processes. Data analytics is currently the fastest-growing segment of the Czech business services sector, even faster than the IT development and support industries.

ABSL found that 70 percent of business service centers in Czechia need to recruit more experts for data analytics positions, and the supply of such experts from the local labor market simply isn’t enough.

As businesses integrate complex IT solutions to enhance the efficiency of their operations, they need the right people to help extract maximum value.

Jonathan Appleton, Director of the Czech Association of Business Service Leaders (ABSL)

Languages are a gateway to employment

The other area in which Czech business service companies consistently lack qualified candidates, according to ABSL’s research, is languages.

With its IT, business, and customer service centers providing support worldwide in a total of 28 languages, business service is a highly international industry. According to data from the Czech Statistical Office, however, 40 percent of Czechs speak only one foreign language and only 24 percent speak two foreign languages.

In this context, the business services sector presents unique employment potential for expats in Czechia. Those who speak other languages in addition to English are particularly appealing to recruiters. Experience in finance, human resources, marketing, logistics, and IT is also a plus.

ABSL is training the next generation of business leaders

A third area where employers see growing skills gap these days is leadership and the ability to lead people or projects. The very good news in this aspect is that Czechia is an attractive place for business service professionals to come and develop their skills given the relative abundance of opportunities compared to other markets.

Whether they end up returning to their home country or staying for the long term, working in Czech business services can help expats from anywhere around the world hone skills and act as a stepping stone to career advancement in their native country.

ABSL is a vital player in this context, providing various educational courses for individual and collective development.

Its Fusion leadership program takes a group of 25 delegates through in-depth training in key areas of business leadership drawing on international best practices, including expert coaching sessions and exclusive networking opportunities.

All programs are designed to fit around delegates’ work schedules and all graduates receive an internationally recognized The Hackett Institute Diploma or Certification in GBS. (Applications for the next round of the Fusion program starting in January 2024 are open, with places awarded on a first come, first served basis.)

ABSL’s educational activities don’t end with the Fusion leaders program. In cooperation with international educational partners, the association has also created an innovative MBA program focused on Global Business Services.

Rich and wide-ranging academic content is supported by ABSL members from Czechia and abroad.

“In addition to our Fusion program, which develops talented employees and their management skills, we have created a dedicated MBA program in collaboration with the University of New York in Prague. This is the first and only MBA with a focus on Global Business Services available in English,” explains Appleton.

The MBA in Global Business Services is tailored to meet the evolving requirements of the modern business services sector, including sessions on strategic management in the digital age, finance, marketing, project management, and human resources.

“Interest in these programs has grown significantly with the acceleration of digitization projects,” notes Appleton adding that all MBA graduates receive an internationally recognized The Hackett Institute Advanced Diploma in GBS.

By providing a solid grounding in the biggest trends affecting the modern workplace and the specific skills needed for success, ABSL’s educational programs support and connect current and future business leaders.

This article was written in cooperation with ABSL. Read more about our partner content policies here.

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