Employee Experience and Reskilling Investments Rise Amid Disruption

48% of respondents are prioritizing integration of modern technologies into existing processes to support a more modern workforce

PLANO, Texas – April 4, 2023 – NTT DATA, a digital business and IT services leader, today released data from its annual Innovation Index research, which shows that organizations are increasing investments in employee skills and experiences to build and retain a more modern workforce. In a global labor market that continues to evolve, the research further reveals how creating high-quality employee experiences is critical to retaining top talent, generating profits and achieving business goals.

The Innovation Index also demonstrates that executive priorities and challenges have evolved over the past several years to increase focus on business resilience. Despite macroeconomic challenges and global disruption, half of those surveyed are still focused on increasing their investments in reskilling and upskilling initiatives, followed closely by efforts to integrate modern technology into existing infrastructure.

Leaders see profit gains from investing in upskilling/reskilling

The data shows a small but impactful leader group (9%) were more likely to see profit gains of over 25% through investing in upskilling/reskilling initiatives to build the workforce of the future. These leaders focus on developing a culture centered around innovation. Nearly half of the survey respondents believe that employee satisfaction depends on open communication, flexible work options and updated technologies.

“Being prepared for the future means creating resilience in both people and organizations and organizations must invest in that resilience,” said Kim Curley, Vice President, Workforce Readiness Consulting at NTT DATA Services. “We must adopt new mindsets and approaches to change, as the work and workforce are constantly shifting. With intelligent technologies taking on countless tasks, embracing upskilling and reskilling creates a more resilient and adaptable workforce. That approach has the added benefit of building momentum for greater employee engagement and retention. Generational and societal pressures are demanding new models for careers, and successful organizations need flexible strategies and workforces.”

As employers continue to focus on improving employee experiences, a gap still exists in how satisfied employees feel in their roles.

  • The importance of improving employee engagement and retention increased by almost 70%, going from 16% in the 2021 report to 27% in the 2022 report.
  • Despite this, 45% say their employees are still feeling unfulfilled in their roles, likely due to the complex set of circumstances over the past few years. Organizations ranked communication, organizational purpose, culture and leadership as top contributors to employee satisfaction and engagement.
  • More than half of leaders surveyed (54%) are aware that communication is a core employee need for satisfaction and engagement, and 48% of these leaders acknowledge the value of flexible working options for a healthier employee work-life balance.

Despite global turbulence and change, executive interest continues to focus on investments that prioritize modern employee experiences, integrating advanced technology and business growth.

  • New reskilling/upskilling initiatives: 50%
  • Integration of modern technologies into existing processes: 48%
  • Creating new products, services and business models: 45%
  • Incorporating new sustainable practices in internal operations: 45%
  • Revamping customer service efforts: 35%

“With accelerating automation and adoption of AI, the workforce must keep pace with tech advancement. Without skills investment, organizations could lose on the unique experiences, talents and perspectives their employees bring to the table that help shape and accelerate their company’s growth.” said Aaron Millstone, President Digital Transformation Services, NTT DATA Services. “In this day and age, it is crucial to acknowledge the value of the workforce and explore new means by which they can grow and pivot their experiences to adopt new and emerging areas of interest and innovation. Language models like ChatGPT will complement the workforce – not replace it – so talent of the future should be well-versed.”

Additionally, organizations have realized meaningful value from these advanced technologies:

  • Smart wearables and ingestibles: 46%
  • Robotics and Robotic Process Automation (RPA): 43%
  • Conversational interfaces (chatbots) and virtual assistants: 40%

As technology investments mature, confidence in organizational outlook will continue to grow. The human-to-technology connection is viewed as an amplifier of innovation: Over half (55%) expect workforce and workplace dynamics to have a positive impact on operations and overall performance over the next two years. Organizations are showing a continued commitment to invest in their workforce and technology as both can lead to improved business resilience and profitability.

About the Survey:

NTT DATA, in partnership with Oxford Economics, conducted the survey of 1,000 business and IT executives across 16 industries in North America to find out how organizations are prioritizing digital transformation and innovation initiatives. To learn more about top business priorities and challenges over the next two years and how leaders are responding, read: The Innovation Index: Shifting from Disruption to Growth.


NTT DATA is a $30 billion trusted global innovator of IT and business services. We help clients transform through business and technology consulting, industry and digital solutions, applications development and management, managed edge-to-cloud infrastructure services, BPO, systems integration and global data centers. We are committed to our clients’ long-term success and combine global reach with local client service in over 80 countries. Visit nttdata.com or LinkedIn to learn more.  

Media Contacts