When people think about learning and development, they often conclude that their programs simply need to be about helping individuals grow professionally. However, in the context of work, L&D is much more than the development of a person.
CLOCK: Corporate Learning EMEA
To create a sustainable learning program—one that supports leadership through thick and thin—HR leaders must align their business goals with the learning they provide to employees. This was the key message from the speakers at the recent online event Corporate Learning EMEA.
Using this framework to determine L&D strategy is critical during an economic downturn, as learning programs are most at risk when budgets are being cut. To avoid learning delays during lean times, HR leaders should heed the speakers’ advice:
Make learning easier
Employers ask a lot of employees. As such, they must offer accessibility and ease when it comes to professional development opportunities. Erika Ullmann, Director, Learning and Development at Virgin Media – Ireland said that learning at work should not be like school. She emphasized asking the important question of why people in the organization want to learn, because she believes the answers lead to an understanding of what to learn next. She is also concerned with simplifying the process.
“Life is complicated enough,” said Ullmann. “Try to make it as easy as possible for everyone so learners don’t have to look for another tool.”
Consolidate learning delivery
One of the major challenges of learning and development today is the fact that many organizations offer a range of applications for the delivery of education. As a result, employees need to keep tabs on all the places to find skill building. The more applications, the more difficult the task.
In the session hosted by Pretyush Sharma, Digital Adoption Expert at Whatfix, the audience revealed that almost 70% of them are experienced workers who use five to ten software applications on a daily basis.
“It’s annoying because they can’t remember all the applications or what they’re supposed to learn,” Sharma said.
Instead, he proposed a Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) that can help ease and simplify the experience by linking apps and putting everything in one place for user access.
Use data for executive buy-in
In a session highlighted by practical advice and a few references to Formula 1, Jonathan Kettleborough, Senior Lecturer Information Systems Strategy at Manchester Metropolitan University, argued for the right use of data to make the case for L&D. Its attitude is refreshing and screams practicality.
“One of the things I want to do is change the data history of L&D and say to someone, ‘You’re going to get this because it’s good for you,’ to sit down with the company and ask them and start doing that Get a strategic alignment, ‘What are you worried about? What keeps you up at night?'”
Once L&D leaders have a sense of what type of learning can help solve the problems plaguing leadership, they can move from operational data like completion rates to performance and impact data, such as: B. what types of outcomes are achieved after building skills. Kettleborough’s parting message to the audience was to know KPIs and look for areas of performance, impact and positive behavior.
“Provide results,” he said, “not just reports or reflections.”
Learn from your mistakes
Francesco Mantovani, Global Learning Technologies and Innovation Director at Procter & Gamble, offered a dynamic session in which he discussed mistakes he made building learning ecosystems. One of the biggest has been to always rely on the learner to determine how and what they learn.
“What we learned is that what the learner wants is not necessarily what they need,” Mantovani said.
He also reminded the audience that most people can find time to do the things they want to do, so no one should just accept that no one has time to study. Learning leaders must address the greatest challenges of learning by helping people realize they have time, guiding them on what to learn, and pointing them to where to find learning opportunities.
Mantovani’s team implemented a badge system, similar to IBM’s, to help motivate employees and provide guidance on the skills they should strive for next. Similar to Kettleborough, Mantovani cautioned against using data and ensuring support for L&D.
“The strategic goal has to be related to the business, not HR strategies or learning strategies,” he said. “The reason for this is very simple. The external environment today offers an enormous amount of possibilities. Many of them are shiny and awesome. You will fall in love with them in 5 minutes because they are the best user experience or another best AI application that does magic stuff… Even if you don’t have the best stuff on the market, you have to answer the business questions. ”
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