Knowledge gaps in the workforce jeopardize future viability / Development of expertise in German companies is faltering – Study “Companies in Change”

January 25, 2022 | News Germany

The “Change Readiness Index 2022” surveyed by the management consultancy Staufen shows: German companies are making little progress in developing expertise on future issues. Not even every second company considers the current level of knowledge of its employees regarding topics such as Industry 4.0 or digitalization to be good. For the survey, Staufen AG interviewed more than 350 top executives of German companies as part of its “Companies in Transition” study.

“The world of work is changing, and so are the demands on the workforce. Employees cannot master the challenges of tomorrow with static expertise alone. That is why companies are now under pressure to act: They must make their employees fit for the future and pave the path for change,” says Wilhelm Goschy, CEO of Staufen AG. In order to position companies for the future, only redesigning processes and production workflows is not sufficient. It also relies on the people to fill these structures with life.

“Our Change Readiness Index, now in its third year, uncovers shortcomings. One clear result of the study is that there is no progress in developing expertise on topics such as Industry 4.0 or digitalization. Compared to the previous survey in 2019, there has been little progress,” said Staufen CEO Goschy. Of the companies surveyed, only 44 percent expressed satisfaction with their workforce’s level of knowledge on such future topics. For management consultant Goschy, the lack of digital maturity among employees is a warning signal: “SMEs are coming under increasing pressure in international competition. If you want to be successful in the long term, you must be able to rely on a flexible and first-class trained workforce.”

Considerable catching up to do in the world of work and training 4.0

According to the Staufen board member, companies should prepare their workforce more intensively for the flexible working world 4.0: “Companies are still treading water. Despite two pandemic years and drastic changes in work processes, we could hardly see any progress in this important subarea.” Although 38 percent of companies were already working with IT-supported training as well as e-learning and self-learning, overall the results of personnel development were still in need of improvement. “Only two out of ten companies have implemented cross-company talent management,” Goschy explains. “There is still a significant lack of action in this area. So there’s plenty of catching up to do in terms of the framework conditions for the world of work and training 4.0.”

The importance of internal training is also reflected in the challenges in personnel management: two-thirds of the study participants find it very difficult to find new colleagues. “The tight labor market is unable to fill the gaps in many companies. That is why companies need to invest more in internal training measures and promote an open corporate culture to increase curiosity and support readiness for new forms of work and learning,” says Staufen CEO Goschy.

Innovative solutions for effective learning – the Staufen Academy

The Staufen Academy supports companies with a tailored-made course program. This helps them stay one step ahead of the competition. For 2022, the virtual qualification courses have been expanded once again and optimally linked to face-to-face offerings. You can find the new Academy program at:

About the study “Companies in Change”

For the current study “Companies in Change,” business consultancy Staufen surveyed a total of 363 companies in Germany. Of the companies surveyed, 68 percent come from the mechanical and plant engineering, electrical engineering, and automotive industries.

The study is available for download free of charge under the following link:

For more information:



Stephanie König
Blumenstr. 5
D-73257 Köngen

Mobil: +49 1522 2887 350


Thöring & Stuhr

Kommunikationsberatung GmbH

Arne Stuhr
Mittelweg 142
D-20148 Hamburg

Mobil: +49 177 3055 194

About Staufen AG

Creating value. Appreciating value. Increasing value.

Inside every company there is an even better one. With this conviction, Staufen AG has been advising and qualifying companies and employees since 1994. Staufen AG offers its customers a unique combination of specialist consulting and organizational development. It is only when process excellence and leadership excellence are integrated that a sustainable culture of change can be ensured in the company in the long term. With the right strategies and methods, Staufen AG quickly sets the necessary changes in motion and achieves measurable success. The consulting firm supports managers and employees in demand-oriented roles – consulting, coaching and qualifying – in establishing a performance-promoting and appreciative corporate culture and thus increasing value creation in their company. This is how Staufen AG increases company value of the company. With 340 employees worldwide, the international Lean Management consultancy serves customers in the competence areas of operational excellence, supply chain network management, organizational development, leadership excellence, digitalization, and Industry 4.0. The Staufen Academy also offers certified, practically oriented and tailored qualifications. In 2021, Staufen AG was named “Best Consultant” for the eighth time in a row and has now been named Germany’s best Lean Management consultancy according to the “Hidden Champions 2022/23” industry study by the Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft für Management und Beratung (WGMB).

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