July 17, 2024

Skills Today’s Managers Need in the Knowledge-Economy

In today’s knowledge economy, it is found that most of the workers are knowledge workers compared to a decade ago. Productivity and effectiveness is the goal to achieve while most industries are towards digitalization. With integrated processes, digital transformation and automation, there is a requirement of knowledge workers in today’s businesses than before. Below is a discussion on the skills today’s managers need in the knowledge economy that weren’t required a decade ago which are also a requirement in the construction industry.

Information is easy to create but it is difficult to validate. At the same time, information is easy to share. In today’s world, information plays a fundamental role in economic decisions with the assumption that economic agents receive the perfect information. The discipline that models the role of information in an economic system is called information economy (Spacey, 2018). The shift of the global economy towards the jobs that require producing knowledge outputs is called a knowledge economy and it requires knowledge outputs such as strategies, designs, instructions, computer codes, and specifications (Spacey, 2018).

Skills today’s managers need in the knowledge economy that weren’t required a decade ago

Compared to the skills needed by managers a decade ago, today’s managers require different skills to contribute and survive in the knowledge economy. Considering the ever-changing technologies today, managers must stay updated with the latest technologies, information, and skills. For any company, the knowledge and skills of its employees is the biggest asset that allows the company to advance in the competitive business environment (Doyle, 2020). Compared to a decade ago, today’s managers in the knowledge economy require new skills.

In general, the skills required are a mix of soft skills and IT skills. These skills can be combined to enhance a manager’s ability to find a job or to stay on top of the current workforce or even manage his business functions effectively (Doyle, 2020). Communication, problem-solving skills, and flexibility are some of the soft skills that every manager needs to improve while Information Communication Technology or ICT relevant to the field of specialization is essential. Knowledge of everyday technological tools such as computers, smartphones, tablets including basic software usage and email sending is important for today’s managers compared to a few years ago (Doyle, 2020). Job-based specific software skills such as CAD and BIM in the construction industry and other software knowledge based on the industry adds benefits to today’s managers in the knowledge economy. Therefore the managers need to develop their skills and stay updated with the current technology trends and changes. Lifelong learning and continued professional development (CPD) are helpful for managers to continue their learning while doing the job, to gain the latest knowledge.

With technology advancement and with access to technological developments such as open-source software, software as a service (SaaS), cloud computing, and outsourcing push technology, most business organizations take advantage of today’s technology advancement. Therefore even if any manager doesn’t want to be a tech expert, it is important to have the tech knowledge and skills that shape up the specific job functions to relevant industry ( Information systems: A manager’s guide to harnessing technology,2015).

In conclusion, today’s managers need to stay updated with the latest technology that supports their role. Same as tech skills, it is also important to improve the soft skills to improve their interaction with others. Lifelong learning opportunities are helpful for managers to tap these knowledge areas.


Doyle, A. (2020). Top Skills and Certifications for the Knowledge Economy. The Balance Careers. https://www.thebalancecareers.com/what-you-need-to-succeed-in-the-knowledge-economy-4172293

Information systems: A manager’s guide to harnessing technology. (2015). University of Minnesota Libraries Publishing. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution – Non-Commercial-Share Alike License.Retrieved from https://open.lib.umn.edu/informationsystems/

Spacey, J. (2018). 14 Examples of Information Economics. Simplicable. https://simplicable.com/new/information-economics

Disclaimer: This paper was written as part of the MBA program.

Amila Gamage

Amila Gamage is the founder of Sihela Consultants and Builtlogy digital magazine. Her experience in the construction industry is over 17 years specializing in contract management. She is also an ACLP certified trainer in Singapore and conducts workshops and training sessions on related topics.

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