Over the past few years, PwC has put significant effort into digitalling upskilling our workforce. These efforts were driven by the ongoing demands of our business and the fact that we need to always increase our customer service and our customer experience. And of course, we need, like every other organisation, to run ourselves as efficiently and effectively as possible.

When we talk about digital transformation at PwC, we’re really talking about putting technology at the heart of all of those things: our customer interactions, our people engagement, and our operations. We also have very demanding employees that want to work in a better environment and be technology enabled. As a result, we’ve been implementing multiple digital platforms, including Salesforce Sales Cloud and Google’s G Suite, and the integration between the two.

The keys to our upskilling efforts

Of course, committing to a digital transformation is one thing. It’s an entirely different endeavor to actually make it happen and work. For PwC, one of those efforts has been Trailhead, Salesforce’s free online learning platform, for the practice members working on Salesforce implementations with clients, plus ongoing internal upskilling support.

First, we needed to ensure we were truly understanding and implementing the full extent of Salesforce’s capabilities. PwC initiated an 8-week learning program, assigning our relevant practice members to target groups to aim for the completion of specific Trailhead modules such as Sales Cloud Basics and the Gmail Integration. Over time this has resulted in our employees earning more than 2,850 Salesforce Certifications across the organisation.

PwC has complemented our Trailhead efforts with a firmwide digital upskilling initiative, we call the Intelligent Digital Hub. This comprises Digital Academies for many of our people, the selection and training of a number of digital accelerators and the establishment of a digital lab, where our people can try out digital tooling and create assets for use across the firm.

Adoption is a marathon, not a sprint

We recognised at the outset that leadership and role modeling were very important elements so their launch and full implementation was sponsored by the UK Exec Board. Across both our Google and Salesforce implementations we put ‘coaches’ in place who also sat alongside board members and leadership so they too were upskilled and could lead by example.

Once basic adoption was established, the lines of service have driven the change vs. pushing it which has quickly helped prove the value to the day-to-day user e.g. communications demonstrating how the technology makes our jobs easier, or the use of reporting through dashboards to gain insights.

Driving adoption and then sustaining usage of digital platforms is hard, hard work and requires continued investment and focus. Our digital transformation was an ongoing commitment-even before COVID-19. But this spring changed everything. In the UK alone, we have over 22,000 employees. With the investments we had put into enablement and deployment, we could move everyone to remote working overnight without a single hiccup.

None of us would ever choose the reality we have right now. But we do believe it has actually accelerated technology adoption by at least a decade. Today, there simply isn’t a choice to up-level technology investment and to make sure your employees are equipped to make the most of it.


To hear more about PwC’s incredible upskilling story, watch VP, Trailblazer Community and Trailhead Evangelism, Leah McGowen-Hare’s on-demand interview with PwC’s Head of Clients and Markets, PwC United Kingdom, Marco Amitrano. Simply visit theSalesforce + Google Virtual Adventure to view.

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