Skills Gaps

Addressing skills gaps with education

In today’s competitive job market, skills gaps are one of the greatest obstacles to business performance. Knowledge work is increasing rapidly, requiring companies to search for highly skilled workers. Yet the availability of candidates with degrees and superior training is shrinking, and the high cost of education is preventing many workers from seeking the advanced skills that employers need. 

Bright Horizons can help. Our employer tuition assistance programs address skills gaps by allowing businesses to invest in their existing workforce, cultivating critical skills while supporting workers as they advance their careers.

Gaps in skills: the dilemma and what to do about it

Widening skills gaps are causing major setbacks for businesses. For unprepared employers, this talent drought means a growing number of unfilled jobs and increasing revenue risks. To overcome these skills gaps, employers must focus on developing talent from within their existing workforce. Tuition assistance programs can help solve this dilemma, but only if they are implemented and managed strategically.

To be effective, an educational assistance program must:

Start with sound strategy. Many companies dive into tuition programs without clearly articulating goals, defining core skills, and determining how an assistance program can help to develop them.
Employee coaching. Successful programs require professional advisors who can guide workers through all their options, helping them to understand how the program can both benefit their needs and address the company’s skills gaps. Working with a professional advisor can make education with tuition assistance seem possible.
Partner with education providers. The most effective tuition assistance programs identify key educational institutions that can provide critical training in accelerated time frames while offering tuition discounts, making education less expensive and more students likely to succeed.

Close skills gaps with Bright Horizons

Bright Horizons is changing the way employers find talent. With more than 30 years of experience creating employee benefit and workforce development programs, we understand how to design high-impact programs that address skills gaps and reinforce your employer brand. Our EdAssist Solutions® help employers develop the benefits programs that drive powerful results in recruitment, retention, and talent development. 

With our turnkey tuition assistance solutions, you can connect your employees to affordable and accelerated programs for degrees and certifications that will enhance their performance, job satisfaction, and loyalty. And by aligning their professional ambitions with your business goals, you can help them develop the knowledge and talent to address a variety of skills gaps.

Our expertise in education benefits

With Bright Horizons’ tuition reimbursement programs, you can turn your education investment into a cornerstone of your talent management strategy. Our team helps to identify the critical competencies needed to fill your skills gaps and connects you to the educational providers who can best train your employees. Your program will be administered on our proven education benefit platform that is designed to maximize your return while simplifying the experience for your employees and HR teams.

Highlights of Bright Horizons’ educational assistance programs include:

Partnerships with over 220 educational institutions
Exclusive tuition discounts and other cost savings
Online and in-person options that accommodate varied learning styles
Expert tuition policy consultants who can benchmark your program against offerings by competitors
A powerful administrative platform with a convenient mobile app
Detailed analytics on participation, retention, and engagement
Expert advisors to help employees understand their options and get the most from your tuition assistance program

Additional Bright Horizons solutions for employee education

In addition to tuition assistance, Bright Horizons offers a range of educational benefit programs that help employers fill skills gaps. 

Employer student loan repayment programs enable employers to make strategic payments to lower employees’ loans and to support workers with financial advisors who can help manage debt repayment goals. Student loan repayment benefits rank as one of the most sought-after benefit programs, helping to increase retention and enhance recruitment efforts.
Education Access programs are designed for employees for whom traditional education solutions aren’t the right fit. Offering access to affordable educational opportunities with enhanced student support, Education Access provides certain employees with a more achievable path to a degree.

Bright Horizons education programs are the foundation for recruitment and retention for employers in a wide range of industries, helping to enable superior high-tech, finance, and healthcare recruitment strategies, for example.

FAQs: what are skills gaps?

What are skills gaps in a workforce?
Skills gaps occur when a company lacks employees or qualified candidates with the skills required to perform certain jobs that enable the business to compete successfully. Skills gaps have increased in recent years with the rapid growth of knowledge work, which has caused skills to become outdated in as little as five years. 

How can employers cost-effectively address skills gaps?
When companies are unable to hire talent to fill skills gaps, investments in the education and training of existing employees can help to create a dependable pipeline of talent. 

What is strategic tuition assistance?

Strategic tuition assistance aligns the ambitions of employees with the requirements of employers, investing in the development of skills that employees want and their employers need.