The Learning & Development imperative

The Learning & Development imperative

Business Development

STOrai Magazine

STOrai Magazine

123 week ago — 7 min read

Learning & Development (L&D) has become a key driver of organisational transformation helping businesses adjust to the demands of the new normal. As per a LinkedIn Learning report, a culture of learning has emerged as a powerful force for business success. Organisations that value constant and continuous learning are poised to win in two ways — with an engaged and energized workforce, and with always-growing skills and knowledge to outpace their competition.


Key Trends

LinkedIn Learning’s 5th Annual Workplace Learning Report 2021 identifies key trends related to the L&D function. Key among them include:


L&D has secured a long-term, elevated role in their organisations: The pandemic is when executives really took notice of the positive impact that learning can have. L&D leaders moved at lightning speed to deliver learning programs to help employees manage through the crisis and stay productive from home; 64% of L&D pros globally agree that this was the moment learning shifted from a “nice to have” to a “need to have.”


Blended online learning is here to stay: Organisations that function with some employees working remotely and some in a traditional office environment — are going to be the way we work for the foreseeable future. This means that the pivot L&D made from instructor-led training (ILT) to blended online learning — learning experiences with a mix of virtual instructor-led training (VILT) and online learning — will remain the status quo.


Organisations that value constant and continuous learning are poised to win in two ways—with an engaged and energised workforce, and with always growing skills and knowledge to outpace their competition.



Strategic Advantage

Learning powers positive culture. LinkedIn Learning’s The Skills Advantage report lists insights to help organisations power their skills strategy.


Learning creates great culture: According to Glint’s Employee Well-Being Report, employees want more than a paycheck. The No. 1 factor that people say defines an exceptional work environment? Opportunities to learn and grow.


Great culture drives success: Employees working for organisations with highly rated cultures are 31% more likely to recommend working for their organisation and 25% are more likely to report being happy working for their organisation.


People want to create value with skills: 10x employees who feel their skills are not being put to good use in their current job are 10x more likely to be looking for a new job.


Internal mobility boosts retention: Companies that excel at internal mobility are able to retain employees for an average of 5.4 years. That’s nearly 2x as long as companies that struggle with it, where the average retention span is 2.9 years. A skills-based, learning culture that embraces internal moves is an important antidote to employee frustration and attrition.


Managers bring learning to life: 91% of employees say it’s important for managers to inspire learning and experimentation. Companies that invest in manager skills can benefit from a ripple of energy across their organisations.


Top Priorities

LinkedIn Learning’s The Skills Advantage report recommends top 5 priorities that can help organisations build a culture of continuous learning and discover methods and technology to support their growth strategy.


1. Help your organisation keep pace with digital transformation: Instead of figuring out 50,000 technical skills that may be required, focusing on the top 50 business-critical capabilities the organisation needs, both now and in the future, and determining the skills that ladder up to those recommends analyst Josh Bersin.


Instead of figuring out 50,000 technical skills that may be required, focusing on the top 50 business-critical capabilities the organisation needs.


2. Rethink how to assess skills and measure impact: Defining and assessing skills are critical steps towards tying the impact of learning to business outcomes. To assess skills and track progress on closing skills gaps, learning leaders must use a broad swath of techniques, including everything from certifications and manager feedback, to employee 360s and engagement surveys.


3. Create accessible, inclusive learner experiences: Today’s learning experiences needs to be personalised, interactive, and social to keep employees interested. To truly drive learner engagement and success, learning needs to be accessible and inclusive. Making sure the content is accessible to different learning styles, abilities, and preferences; being transparent about skill-building programs to help people take full advantage of their learning journey and connecting skills across talent acquisition and talent development to support internal mobility opportunities help meet expectations of today’s learners.


4. Put skills to work for diversity, inclusion, equity, and belonging: A skills-based approach helps companies better understand and match people to opportunity.


5. Ensure learning is at the centre of conversations: Alignment between L&D and the executive team is necessary for a culture of continuous learning, and it starts with the CEO. Once that happens, Josh Bersin advises, “talent mobility and job mobility and growth become much easier to implement.”


Advice by experts

Start with the power of personalised learning: By meeting learners where they are and showing them the path to achieve their professional ambitions, personalized learning creates a meaningful and engaging learner experience.


Add the energy of community: Community-based learning connects learners with peers and experts inside and outside of their organizations. With more remote work and distributed teams, digital spaces for people to share ideas and learn from one another have immense value to learning outcomes and personal well-being.


Amplify impact with skills insights: Learner insights allow L&D teams to understand which people in their organisation have the greatest appetite for learning, and how individuals and teams are progressing towards closing skill gaps.


Also read: Tranform or be transformed


Image source: Canva


Article source: STOrai Magazine. Adapted from ‘The Skills Advantage’ and the ‘5th Annual Workplace Learning Report 2021’ reports by LinkedIn Learning.


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy or position of GlobalLinker.