You are reading the article Windows Insider Program “Get Started” Is Greyed Out updated in December 2023 on the website Bellydancehcm.com. We hope that the information we have shared is helpful to you. If you find the content interesting and meaningful, please share it with your friends and continue to follow and support us for the latest updates. Suggested January 2024 Windows Insider Program “Get Started” Is Greyed OutWindows Insider Program “Get Started” is Greyed Out
Many users within the Windows Insiders program reported that the Get Started button is greyed out.
If you too are among them, then follow this guide to fix the problem.
If you need further tech-related assistance, go to our Troubleshooting page.
To read more about Windows Insider builds and the program itself, check out our Windows 10 page.
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The Windows 10 Insider Program is still active, even after the release of the full version of Windows 10.
But some users who left the Insider Program for the full version, report that they’re unable to get back to the program because of the ‘Get Started‘ button is grayed out. Luckily, this is a common problem, and there’s an easy solution for it.
Microsoft attracted a lot of users with the Insider Program for Windows 10 Technical Preview. More than 5 million people were using and testing Windows 10, before its actual release.
But when the full release finally came, most of the users decided to leave the Insider Program and use the full version only.
But when some of them decided to get back to the Windows Insider Program, they simply couldn’t, because the Get Started, button, which brings you back to the program was greyed out.How can I fix greyed out Get Started button in Windows 10? 1. Delete the SoftwareDistribution folder
Some people said that besides fixing the broken updates, deleting the content of the SoftwareDistribution folder helped them to get back the Get Started button, as well. Here’s how to delete everything from the SoftwareDistribution folder:
Go to This PC and open the partition you have your Windows installed on (it’s usually C:)
Go to Windows folder
In Windows folder, find a folder named SoftwareDistribution and open it
Delete everything from that folder
Restart your computer
Since the SoftwareDistribution problem is a possible solution, the problem lays in Windows Updates. So, if deleting the SoftwareDistribution folder doesn’t have any effects, you can try running Windows Update Troubleshooter, from Control Panel, maybe this Microsoft tool will be helpful.
If you need to make sure everything is deleted and that nothing is left behind, you should consider the aid of a third-party program.
There are multiple effective tools that can help you to permanently erase specific files you need to keep away from your PC.
Regardless of your privacy, using effective file deletion software will help you thoroughly erase files and folders from your system.2. Check your privacy settings
If you’re worried about your privacy in Windows 10, and a lot of people are, because it is well known that Microsoft collects your personal data through Windows 10, you probably changed some privacy settings, in order to keep your computer as private as possible.
One of these privacy settings is the ability to send data to Microsoft, as feedback of using Windows 10, and if you chose not to send any data, you won’t be able to get back to Windows Insider Program.
So, when you try to ‘get started,’ you won’t be able to, and you’ll see the message which says Some Settings Are Managed By Your Organization.
We talked about removing this message in our article about Some Settings Are Managed By Your Organization in Windows 10, so just follow the instructions from that article, and you’ll be able to remove this message, and Get Started button won’t be greyed out anymore, so you can receive future Preview builds normally.
If your ‘Get Started’ button is still greyed out, even after changing settings like shown in the article, then something’s actually wrong with your system, so you can try some of the following solutions.3. Enable Telemetry in the Registry
As stated at the beginning of this article, in order to be able to select Insider builds, you need to first enable Telemetry settings. You can also do this by tweaking your Registry:
Change the AllowTelemetry dword value to 3
If there is noAllowTelemetry dword available, create it
Restart your computer and check if you can download the latest Windows 10 Insider build4. Disable VPN software
If you want to participate in developing further versions of Windows 10, getting involved in Insider Program is probably the best thing for that. And if you had some problems re-joining the program, I hope this article solved everything.
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If Windows is stuck in Dark mode, follow these suggestions to get out of it. Here we have elaborated on some common reasons why your Windows 11/10 PC might be stuck in Dark mode. You need to follow all these solutions according to the cause.Windows stuck in Dark Mode
If Windows 11/10 is stuck in Dark mode, follow these suggestions to get out of Drak Mode:
Restart Windows Explorer
Disable Auto Dark Mode
Check Contrast themes settings
Verify Group Policy settings
Check Registry settings
To know more about these steps, keep reading.1] Restart Windows Explorer
If you use Dev or Beta channel, restarting the Windows Explorer process could resolve the issue. If your system includes some bugs or glitches, it might be fixed by restarting Windows Explorer. For your information, you can restart Windows Explorer using Task Manager. To restart Windows Explorer in Windows 11/10, follow these steps:
Press Win+X to open the WinX menu.
Select Task Manager from the list.
Find the Windows Explorer process.
Then, check if it is still stuck in Dark mode or not. If yes, follow the other solutions.2] Disable Auto Dark Mode
There are some third-party apps that allow users to switch between Dark and Light modes automatically. You can set a time, and the modes will the enabled in automation. If you have such apps enabled on your computer, you need to disable it. One of the most common apps for this purpose is Auto Dark Mode. Check your system tray and Task Manager if you or someone has installed it on your PC.3] Check Contrast themes settings
Windows 11 and Windows 10 come with some Contract themes that let users opt for a black theme or mode. If you have activated such a theme, you need to disable it immediately. To check the Contrast themes settings, follow these steps:
Press Win+I to open Windows Settings.
Expand the drop-down list.
Choose the None option.
Then, check if it resolves your issue or not.4] Verify Group Policy settings
There are some Group Policy settings that could be responsible for this issue on your computer. You need to check them one after one and set them to the factory defaults. To verify Local Group Policy Editor settings, follow these steps:
Find all the Enabled and Disabled settings.
Choose the Not Configured option.
For your information, you need to check these settings:
Prevent changing color scheme
Prevent changing theme
Prevent changing color and appearance
Local a specific theme
Force a specific visual style file or force Windows Classic5] Check Registry settings
You can activate or deactivate the aforementioned settings using Windows Registry as well. If you turned them on earlier using Registry Editor, you need to disable them using the same utility.
To check the Registry settings, follow these steps:
Navigate to this path: HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionThemesPersonalize
Find all the REG_DWORD values with a Value data of 1.
Then, close all the windows and restart your computer.
Read: How to activate Dark Mode on Windows 11Why is my laptop stuck in dark mode?
There could be several reasons why your laptop is stuck in dark mode. Some of the common reasons and solutions are mentioned above. You can go through these solutions to get rid of the issue. For example, you can check the Registry settings, Group Policy settings, disable Contrast themes, etc.How do I get my Microsoft Windows out of dark mode?
That’s all! Hope these solutions worked for you.
Read: How to change High Contrast Theme back to normal in Windows.
This article provides a Comprehensive Guide to Getting Started with Google Bard
Google has launched its artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot Bard in select countries to compete with rival ChatGPT after the massive success of Microsoft-supported ChatGPT. Google Bard is an AI-powered chatbot tool that uses natural language processing and machine learning to mimic human conversations. Bard can be incorporated into websites, messaging platforms, or applications to provide user questions with realistic, natural language responses in addition to Google search.
Based on Google’s Language Model for Dialogue Applications (LaMDA) technology, Google Bard is built. LaMDA was developed using Transformer, a 2023 release of Google’s neural network architecture. Since Transformer was made open source by Google, it has served as the foundation for other generative AI tools, like the GPT-3 language model in ChatGPT.
The generative AI-tuned ChatGPT of OpenAI generates everything from creative writing to synopses. Bard, on the other hand, is built around search. It plans to take into consideration more regular language questions, instead of catchphrases, for search. Bard’s AI is programmed to respond to and ask questions that sound like a conversation. It does more than just give a list of responses; it also gives the responses their context. It’s also made to help with follow-up questions, which is a new thing to look for.
Google currently grants early access to Bard users in the United States and the United Kingdom, and the company has stated that it will eventually grant access to users in additional languages and countries.
Users can join a waitlist to get access to Bard, which promises to help them plan a friend’s baby shower, outline and write drafts of essays, and get lunch ideas based on what’s in the fridge.
“You can use Bard to increase productivity, generate more ideas quickly, and pique your interest.” Google stated in a blog post, “You might ask Bard to give you tips to reach your goal of reading more books this year, explain quantum physics to you in simple terms, or spark your creativity by outlining a blog post.”
Clients can pursue the Google Versifier shortlist today and use Google Minstrel’s trial review adaptation for nothing.Signing Up for Google Bard Is Easy:
At the point when it’s your chance to attempt Versifier, you will get another email named “It’s your chance to attempt Troubadour.”
Some users claimed that they received their Bard Google invite in a matter of hours. In the future, the waitlist might move more slowly or faster.
Keep in mind that Google Workspace accounts cannot currently sign up for Bard to join the program. If you attempt, you will receive the message “This Google Account is not supported.”
Additionally, it does not support user accounts created by individuals under the age of 18.Utilizing Google Bard:
You will be able to log in to the Bard website using your Google account once you have access to Google Bard.
Google Bard, like ChatGPT and Bing’s AI Chat, provides a straightforward chat window and a location where you can type your commands.
On the chat interface, there is also a microphone button where you can ask a question or give instructions.
You can reset the Bard chat conversion via the “Reset chat” option on the Bard page, control the saved Bard chatbot activity via the “Bard Activity” option, and access the Google Bard FAQ via the “FAQ” button on the Bard page.
According to several reports, Google Bard utilizes natural language models and machine learning similar to ChatGPT, but their features differ. For instance, Google Bard has the potential to use the most recent information for its responses, whereas ChatGPT is based on information gathered up until 2023.When Will Everyone Be Able to Use Google Bard?
We may earn revenue from the products available on this page and participate in affiliate programs. Learn more ›
The 22-year-old Brit watches this drama not through the visor of a helmet, but on the screen of a racing simulator. Baldwin is among the best esports drivers in the world, one of several dozen who earn a living competing in the digital domain. Now he’s preparing for his professional motor-sports debut on a bona fide road course.
Baldwin earned his shot a few months earlier, when he won the second season of World’s Fastest Gamer, a reality television series that saw 10 would-be Mario Andrettis compete for the chance to go wheel-to-wheel with seasoned pros. They raced on virtual and physical asphalt and dirt tracks and faced a series of challenges designed to test their problem-solving and leadership skills. When filming started in October 2023, Baldwin hadn’t done much more real-world driving than tooling around town. Fourteen days later, he crossed the finish line at Las Vegas Motor Speedway doing more than 130 miles per hour in a machine he called “fast enough to be scary.”
That isn’t as foolhardy as it might sound. Hyper-realistic driving games and hardware that mimic the sensation of hurtling around a track have made it possible to go racing with minimal experience in a proper car. Research suggests that the skills needed to master titles like Gran Turismo or Forza apply to competing in events like the 24 Hours of LeMans, one of the most grueling contests in motor sports. Baldwin now joins a handful of sim hotshots who have made that jump, something you don’t see in other sports, says Darren Cox, who launched World’s Fastest Gamer after a career in the auto industry. He notes that people who excel at, say, playing soccer on their Xbox aren’t going to find themselves appearing in the World Cup. “You can’t kick a ball around in FIFA and become the next Ronaldo,” he says.
The line between the virtual and real worlds began to blur in 2008, when Cox launched GT Academy, a TV program that turned gamers into drivers. When the show’s inaugural winner went on to finish second at LeMans in 2011, Formula One, Nascar, and other leagues started paying attention. Several have since joined the automakers that compete in them to launch online teams and tournaments in a bid to attract new drivers and, more importantly, fans. Many involved see gamers crossing over in greater numbers within the decade.
Not everyone believes the next champions will emerge from the world of esports, however. Skeptics argue that the physical and mental demands—let alone the inherent feel for the machinery—needed to compete at the upper echelons require experience, not simulation.
Baldwin is determined to prove them wrong. After winning his shot, he started working with a coach to hone the skills to handle the 700-odd-horsepower McLaren he’ll drive throughout Europe sometime in 2023. As he clocked hours in the simulator and miles around Silverstone, the COVID-19 pandemic put the date of his debut on hold. Nonetheless, Baldwin will spend the intervening time enduring an arduous schedule of workouts to prepare his body—and mind—for the challenges ahead. “This has been my dream since I was a kid,” he says. “Because of my esports experience over the last couple of years, I believe I will be able to compete at a very high level in the real world.”
Esports ace James Baldwin with the McLaren he’ll drive in his live racing debut. The Voorhes
On a bright, clear morning in November 2023, Baldwin and three other finalists on World’s Fastest Gamer stood on the pavement of Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The circuit, 20 minutes northeast of the Strip, has seen Nascar drivers approach 200 mph, but no one had any illusions of reaching such a number during the 22-minute dash that would determine the show’s grand prize winner. Moments later, Baldwin pulled a helmet over his spiky blond hair and folded himself into a sleek fiberglass-bodied racer called a Mitjet EXR LV02.
The pack sprinted away from the starting line. Californian Mitchell de Jong led for two laps before Baldwin squeaked by. He ruthlessly built a 10-second lead—forever in auto racing—by the time the checkered flag waved. Cox congratulated him as he climbed from the cockpit, sweaty and elated. “We’ve just watched a group of kids, most of whom had never raced a car in their lives, get into a superfast sports car and dominate this track after just two weeks of practice,” Cox said.
Baldwin began training for his big-time debut two months later. He started at Brands Hatch Circuit, near London, before switching to Silverstone. The track is not far from where he grew up watching Formula One, the pinnacle of motor sports. At an age when most kids learn to ride a bike, he begged his mother and father to let him take up karting, often the first step toward a career as a throttle jockey. As hobbies go, it’s not cheap—a few thousand for a decent machine, and, at the uppermost levels, as much as six figures in expenses each season. Still, they relented, and over the next several years Baldwin did well enough to move up in 2023 at age 17 to a larger, more powerful ride in the Formula Ford division. He entered four events in six months, compiling a decent record but spending $20,000 doing it. “My parents were like, ‘We have to stop now,’” he recalls after a session in the simulator at the track.
Baldwin switched to playing the racing sim Project Cars in his bedroom when he wasn’t in a classroom studying engineering. The title is among the most popular in a genre that dates to 1974, when people used to drop quarters into Atari’s Gran Trak 10 arcade game, which featured a genuine steering wheel, shift lever, and pedals. Despite the realistic hardware, the experience was more Mario Kart than Indy 500. That remained the norm until the mid-1990s and the debut of seminal titles like Gran Turismo, Grand Prix Legends, and others that featured lifelike physics, environments, and driving techniques.
The rise of online gaming in the early 2000s has allowed players to compete against each other, more like they would on the track. Dabblers get by with consoles like the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, but hardcore competitors often favor computers with peripherals like a steering wheel, shifter, pedals, and seat. “Once I transitioned to a more realistic simulator, not only did I get faster, but I had more fun,” Baldwin says.
He started entering tournaments and in 2023, at age 20, joined Veloce Esports, a gaming team in London. He quit school, and within a year ranked among the world’s top competitors in Project Cars 2, prompting Cox to offer him a spot on World’s Fastest Gamer.
Cox grew up wanting to try karting, but turned to video games because his parents couldn’t afford it. He studied politics and economics in college before going to work for Renault and then Nissan, where he led its global competition operation. The automaker launched a marketing campaign with Gran Turismo in 2006, and Cox invited aficionados of the game to lap a track with professional drivers. “Some of the instructors came up to me after and said, ‘You know, a bunch of these guys can really drive,’” he says. “That was my light bulb moment.” Seeing a chance to cultivate talent and attract new racing fans, in 2008 Cox launched GT Academy, an unprecedented television series in which Gran Turismo players competed for a seat on Nissan’s racing team. The show, filmed in Britain, ran for eight seasons, aired in 160 countries, and drew 100 million viewers at its peak.
A new generation of drivers are getting their start on consoles instead of racecars. The Voorhes
It also launched several careers—impressive, given that most contestants had never climbed behind the wheel of anything faster than the family hauler. The show’s first winner, Lucas Ordoñez of Spain, has since competed in 112 events and racked up 21 top-three finishes, including two at LeMans. Jann Mardenborough earned his driver’s license just two years before winning season three. Nissan spent six months preparing the Brit for the 2011 24H Dubai endurance race, where his team placed third. He’s been at it ever since. “The transition from the virtual to the real world felt completely normal,” says Mardenborough, who now competes with Kondo Racing in the Japanese Super GT series. “Being a 19-year-old at the time probably helped; I didn’t have the self-preservation part of my brain telling me to back off.”
The pivot could not have come at a better time. Formula One saw viewership in Britain, where most teams are based, plummet 24 percent between 2023 and 2023. Nascar has lost more than half of its live and TV audience since 2014. The sport is on a “constant quest” to counter declining viewership, and “esports presents an intriguing opportunity to access a potentially valuable new demographic,” according to a 2023 report by Nielsen analysts. The tactic worked for soccer. A 2023 University of Michigan study cited the success of the FIFA game franchise as a factor in the sport’s surging popularity in the US.
In 2023, Cox founded his own outfit, which joined the Canadian firm Torque Esports in 2023. One year later, he launched World’s Fastest Gamer. The first season aired on ESPN and CNBC. Some 400 million people tuned in, and Rudy van Buren of the Netherlands won the grand prize: a job as a simulation driver for McLaren Racing, helping perform virtual tests of its Formula One cars. Impressive, but Baldwin will face the ultimate challenge of driving a McLaren 720S GT3 for Jenson Team Rocket RJN in the 2023 GT World Challenge endurance championship series. “Of course people in recent years have been on a similar journey, going from esports into the real world, but no one has gone in at the level of racing we are,” Baldwin says. “I am determined to show what is possible.”
Given Baldwin’s resolve to prove he can handle a $600,000 carbon-fiber rocket on wheels, it is perhaps ironic that he still spends much of his time in a simulator. But then, so do many pros. Teams at every level rely on the machines, which can cost as much as eight figures, to precisely replicate navigating any course, in any conditions. They allow drivers to acquaint themselves with a car or track and help engineers analyze vehicle performance. The technology is so precise that it has in many cases largely replaced expensive physical testing.
That explains why Baldwin’s training relies so heavily on it. If he isn’t in his rig at home, he is squeezed into the form-fitting seat of a simulator built by Allinsports, an Italian firm founded by a former Formula One engineer. His hands grip a steering wheel flanked by gearshift paddles (the computerized controls long ago replaced conventional stick shifts), and his feet depress gas and brake pedals. His eyes rarely leave the curved 48-inch screen before him. The hardware, about the size of a recliner, sits in the corner of a conference room overlooking Silverstone.
An off-the-shelf program called rFactor 2 allows Baldwin to experience nearly any circuit in the world, in any of dozens of cars. He can adjust his ride’s suspension, tune its engine, even customize the paint job. The software models factors like the damage tires sustain in a skid and how traction varies as the rubber wears and pavement conditions change. The system uses these calculations to provide surprisingly tactile feedback. The steering wheel shudders and vibrates, the brake pedal demands a firm push, and, like the McLaren he’ll drive, everything requires a deft touch to avoid a stall or spin.
James Baldwin practicing in a racing simulator. The Voorhes
Evidence suggests the skills Baldwin has honed in the digital realm will serve him well as he crosses over. Cognitive psychologists at New York University Shanghai and the University of Hong Kong showed that gamers are much better than other people at processing visual information and acting on it. They also found that driving sims can help anyone “significantly improve” those abilities in just five to 10 hours, leading the researchers to believe that such software could be effective training tools. Their 2023 study builds on work by Daphne Bavelier and Adrien Chopin, cognitive neuroscientists at the University of Geneva and the Sorbonne in Paris, respectively; their 2012 inquiry revealed that playing titles that feature highly dynamic situations and demand rapid decision-making can improve perception, attention span, and spatial cognition. Chopin has little doubt that esports players can become racers, given the authenticity of the vehicles, environments, and controllers. “Because of these characteristics, it is essentially the same task,” he says. “What you learn in the game should be transferable.”
Still, Baldwin knows he must hone his abilities through real-world experience. He’s lapped Silverstone in several cars, learning how to handle them at racing speeds. (So far he’s achieved 170 mph.)
This past March, he spent two days zipping around Circuit Paul Ricard in France in the McLaren. “The team was very happy with my performance,” he says. “They said my pace and consistency were great. And I didn’t crash, which was a massive tick in the box for them.” Naturally, he crammed for that test by driving a virtual version. Still, Baldwin concedes there are some things a simulator can’t prepare him for. “A real car is hot, it’s sweaty, it vibrates,” he says. “It sounds silly, but you don’t actually realize this until you get in and start driving.”
Beyond heat and noise, gamers have a lot to learn. They often miss subtle signals from the tires and suspension that can help them go faster and avoid problems, says Ross Bentley, a coach who has trained them. And while esports drivers possess excellent reflexes, concentration, and hand-eye coordination, they often lack the fitness long stints at speed require, says Mia Sharizman of Renault Sport Academy, the automaker’s driver recruiting program. During a race, competitors can lose several pounds, experience as much as five times the force of gravity, and endure heart rates as high as 170 beats per minute. “You need to be able to have core and neck strength to withstand the extreme G-forces, leg strength for the braking, and, most importantly, mental fortitude to be able to function while knowing that your life is at risk,” Sharizman says. “It’s extremely difficult to replicate that type of scenario and environment.”
Fortunately, Baldwin has some appreciation of this from his childhood racing experience. He’s working with Simon Fitchett, who has spent seven years training Formula One drivers, to prepare his body and further sharpen his concentration. “It’s hard to focus my mind sometimes,” he says. But the greatest challenge may lie in mastering fear, something Juan Pablo Montoya, whose long career includes stints in Formula One and Nascar, saw competitors struggle with while he was a judge on World’s Fastest Gamer. “A fast corner in a simulator is nothing. You press a button and you try and you try until you get it right,” he says. “When you’re doing 150 or 180 miles per hour on a track in a corner and you have to keep your foot down, the reality sets in. That’s when you’re going to start seeing the difference between the guys who can make it in reality and the guys who can only make it in esports.”
Baldwin will face that test when he finally rolls up to the starting line at Brands Hatch Circuit outside London, fulfilling a childhood dream. He has no doubt he’ll pass. “As long as I’m finishing first,” he says, flashing a cheeky grin, “then it should all be good, right?”
This story appeared in the Summer 2023, Play issue of Popular Science.
Windows 8.1 is going out of service. What should you do?
The Windows 8.1 operating system will go out of service starting in January 2023.
You will have to prepare if your personal and business security are main concerns.
Here’s what you will need to do when this deadline finally comes early next year.
As you surely know by now, Microsoft will terminate support for the Windows 8.1 operating system early next year, which means you will have to take some measures on your end.
Security-wise, the Redmond-based tech company strongly recommends an upgrade to one of the later, supported operating systems.
Users that still haven’t upgraded to Windows 11, or Windows 10 for that matter, are already being bombarded with notifications.How can I prepare for Windows 8.1 end-of-service?
Yes, this isn’t a joke, and Microsoft will terminate all Windows 8.1 support on January 10th, 2023, so right after the new year.
For those of you thinking that you can ride this train a bit longer, just know that Microsoft will not be offering an extended support package for Windows 8.1.
If you are a Windows 8.1 user, you surely know that Microsoft originally retired all Windows 8 support in 2023, but the updates will completely stop starting with January 2023.
So, you either purchase a new PC, if the one you are using is only good for obsolete versions of Windows or officially pay to upgrade to either Windows 10 or Windows 11.
Furthermore, businesses won’t be able to pay for additional security patches and will have to upgrade or accept the risk of running software without security updates.
That being said, know that it’s not just Windows, either. The tech giant encourages users to subscribe to Microsoft 365, which continually offers updates, patches, and new features, as part of an ongoing subscription.
With that in mind, Microsoft will stop providing both patches and new features for Microsoft 365 users running Windows 8.1.
So, you can see how the implications exceed simply having to deal with annoying notifications and deadline reminders.What should I know about upgrading from Windows 8.1?
Some of you were probably thinking about upgrading directly to the last version of Windows, which is Windows 11, so we’re going to have to shed some light on that.
First of all, Microsoft was adamant about the new system requirements for Windows 11, so an upgrade from Windows 8.1 to 11 is pretty much out of the question.
Also, as the Redmond company stated, upgrading directly from Windows 8 to Windows 11, if it even works, will overwrite your hard drive, erasing its contents.
There’s something to think about when considering such a huge operating system leap. Creating a backup of your data is highly recommended.
Instead, an in-place upgrade, which will preserve your data, is possible when upgrading from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10.
You can then move further and upgrade from Windows 10 to the last operating system released by Microsoft, Windows 11.
However, there’s no need to upgrade to Windows 11 if you don’t feel like it right now, or don’t have the resources to upgrade your rig.
Keep in mind that Windows 10 will continue to receive support until October 14, 2025, so there really isn’t any rush.
If you need information on how to perform the upgrade to Windows 10, we have prepared an awesome article for you.
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blog / General What Is Workforce Transformation? Why It Matters and Getting Started
The way we work is changing–fast. And many companies are struggling to keep up with the pace of that evolution.
Updating processes, technologies, and business practices takes significant time and investment. But keeping employees at the top of their game is most critical of all. A company’s workforce failing to keep up with changes to business operations creates an opening for competitors to get ahead.
That’s where workforce transformation comes in.
What Is Workforce Transformation
Workforce transformation refers to the process of realigning a company’s employee base to ensure that their skills match the company’s strategic needs. Essentially, a company undergoing workforce transformation assesses its existing skills, identifies the skills needed to meet future goals, and maps out any skills gaps.
Once you identify those gaps, you can embark on closing them through targeted reskilling, upskilling, and hiring.
According to a Newsweek survey, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the rate at which certain workplace skills become obsolete increased by more than 70%. In many industries, technological shifts that were expected to take place years into the future came rapidly in response to our new reality. For example, B2B organizations that traditionally relied on in-person sales visits suddenly needed to shift to digital strategies.
Companies have always needed to be able to pivot rapidly to avoid falling behind. However, as the pace of technological change increases, these transformations are necessary more often and need to be done on a shorter time scale. Organizations, therefore, need effective workforce transformation programs to ensure they can align their skills base with the company’s future goals and needs.
How to Launch a Workforce Transformation
Effectively launching a workforce transformation requires careful planning. Consider the following steps.
1. Conduct a skills assessment.
Without knowing what skills you have in your workforce, it’s impossible to know what gaps exist. Consider using a multi-faceted approach to measuring employee skills, including looking at existing job descriptions and performance reviews, talking to managers, and surveying employees themselves. It’s important to regularly reassess skills, as they can change rapidly with employee turnover and as employees grow and develop.
2. Identify critical needs and goals.
While some specific technical skills may receive a lot of buzz, a company’s actual workforce needs are highly dependent upon its organizational goals. Before embarking on a workforce transformation initiative, company leaders should identify and prioritize the most critical skills to fulfill those goals.
3. Create a plan for skills development.
External online training programs (like those offered by
Company-led (internal) training programs
Temporary or “stretch” assignments in different departments
Traditional degree programs
4. Measure and adapt.
Like with any organizational effort, it’s essential to set and track success metrics. Regularly check in to ensure your transformation strategies are effectively deliver new skills and meet company needs. Since workforce transformation aims to adapt to new demands, regularly reassessing the match between employee skills and company needs is essential.
Addressing Challenges of
While workforce transformation is imperative, it also poses many challenges, which can include the following.
1. The overwhelming scale of the project
Overhauling an entire company’s workforce can be a massive challenge. That’s why it’s recommended to break it into small pieces and identify replicable processes to reduce the scale of the work.
Starting by identifying specific skills or business units to transform and carefully tracking and measuring the process and results throughout can help build the business case for a broader transformation. Plus, it provides an opportunity to identify company-specific challenges and best practices.
2. Lack of relevant data
Many organizations lack robust data on their own employees. Without that information, it’s impossible to know how to focus your skill-building efforts. Companies without strong metrics in place should consider investing in people analytics capabilities such as surveys and related tools. For Philip Morris International, detailed online assessments (especially for key leaders) were central to a successful transformation effort.
“It’s recommended to break it into small pieces and identify replicable processes to reduce the scale of the work.”
3. Need for organizational buy-in
Any large-scale transformation efforts can understandably cause employees anxiety. That’s why you should prioritize strong leadership and clear communication. This will ensure your workforce understands that these development efforts are meant for growth rather than to become a threat to their employment. Most employees are eager to develop their own skills; it’s simply a matter of effectively sharing goals and processes so that they understand what’s to come.
Workforce Transformation Examples
It’s always helpful to look at companies that have successfully completed comparable workforce transformations for inspiration. Notable examples in recent years include:
In 2023, Unilever embarked on an ambitious effort to prepare its 155,000 employees for the future of work. Their program aims to create a “future-fit plan” for every employee. They name employees’ goals, consider how their specific roles might change or disappear in the future, and identify the skills they need to gain to adapt to new positions. These efforts are combined with a broader initiative within Unilever to help employees find a sense of purpose in their work and build engagement and satisfaction.
L’Oreal knew it couldn’t rely on its reputation alone to compete in a crowded cosmetics marketplace. It embarked on an ambitious digital transformation plan to reduce time to market from 18 to 6 months, in part by upskilling and reskilling workers to enhance their digital capabilities. L’Oreal has invested in training offerings to power this transformation. This includes virtual courses and a broad online learning platform available to all employees. In fact, in 2023, every L’Oreal employee worldwide received training.
At Allstate, like many insurance companies, the impact of technologies like AI is rapidly changing business operations. While the use of new technologies varies significantly based on employees’ roles, the company has made a concerted effort to roll out new people analytics technology and has invested in training. In 2023, Allstate employees completed 139,000 hours of formal training, and 7,000 attended the company’s Global Learning Week focused on development.
Workforce transformation is a complex undertaking, but experts say it’s well worth the effort. Companies that invest in adapting and staying nimble before the market forces them to will see improved performance and employee engagement–and be better positioned to tackle future challenges.
Ready to embark on your workforce transformation journey? Learn more about how Emeritus Enterprise can help you build a custom plan to upskill and reskill employees through online employee training programs.
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