These are the most in-demand skills going into 2023—are they part of your workforce strategy?

Data from learning and development companies sheds light on what skills organizations are investing in as we begin the new year.
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· 3 min read

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We all want to learn and grow, but there are limitations: No amount of training could get this reporter drafted by the NBA. Some things just can’t be taught—but a coding language or project management skills aren’t among those things.

If you’ve been thinking about the skills your employees will require to meet the future needs of your business, online education company Coursera has some recommendations based on usage data from the organizations on its platform.

Let’s get digital. While digital skills are, unsurprisingly, in high demand among employers, according to Coursera’s Job Skills of 2023 report, which details the skills that grew fastest in 2022, they’re also rapidly evolving. Only two of the 10 fastest-growing digital skills in 2021—data visualization and user experience design—are in 2022’s top 10..

Scrum software development and data visualization skills were the fastest rising in 2022. Customer success tools, e-commerce, CRM software, and user experience design came in third, fourth, fifth, and sixth respectively.

Two charts rank the fastest growing digital skills and the fastest-growing human skills.


People skills matter, too. But technologists and AI robots aren’t taking over the world—at least not yet. Coursera’s report emphasized that soft skills, or what it calls “human skills,” are also important. These did not change as much from year to year: Six of the top 10 for 2022 were also in the top 10 the year before.

The fastest-growing newcomers include organizational development (third), people management (fifth), culture (sixth), and collaboration (seventh). Storytelling, change management, and influencing returned to the top 10 in 2022, at first, second, and fourth.

A recent report from another education company, Pearson, outlined a similar set of what it called “power skills” that will be important for the future. Like Coursera’s report, it included communication and collaboration, in addition to other soft skills such as cultural and social intelligence.

Ready for the future. Given the rapidly changing nature of work and the economic environment, HR leaders can use this data to guide their workforce strategies, from recruiting to learning and development (L&D). They can also use it to justify their L&D budgets or other resourcing around training, tied to their relationship with future growth.

“As an HR business leader,” Richard Jacquet, CPO at Coursera, told us, “you’re thinking about skills as a proxy for how you can transform your business, move the business in some different significant direction, or just engage and retain your workforce by showing that there’s a belief and an ability and a path to grow.”—AK

Do you work in HR or have information about your HR department we should know? Email [email protected]. For completely confidential conversations, ask Aman for his number on Signal.

HR is challenging. HR news doesn’t have to be.

News built to help HR pros grow their impact & improve the future of work.