Future LD startup-593324

Forecasting the Future of Learning & Development

As the face of the corporate world changes, fast paced and innovative solutions to Learning and Development become a necessity. Human Resources and Training departments must analyze employee needs and develop strategies to differentiate instruction that will ensure employees are highly skilled while keeping them engaged. Bersin by Deloitte’s Predictions for 2015 reviews some of the top trends and priorities for retaining employees and keeping them highly specialized.

Going Digital

As technology advances, so does the need for technical training. Bersin recommends that corporations take the time to ensure that there is a “digital learning experience” available to employees that allows them to personalize their individual training needs. HR departments should take the time to learn about and supplement their training with the online opportunities that are available through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and online content marketplaces. Consideration should be given to the growing number of improved Learning Management System (LMS) platforms that foster peer-to-peer learning and mentoring, and use “Big Data” analytics to “make learning easier and provide Netflix-like “recommendations” for learning.” Additionally, the report suggests including digital learning systems such as easy to find, easy to use videos that will engage the Millennial employees in a manner that they already employ for learning.

Face Time

Although the digital age has brought a global library of L&D to our fingertips, it is important to recognize that learning must encompass a human experience as well. In his report, Bersin emphasizes that as “organizations become more global, we need to meet each other to learn and share”. Creating “corporate universities” allows employees to learn from each other through one-on-one sessions or group training classes while building connections with their global teams. This social learning system leverages the experience within your firm and encourages sharing of best practices. His research indicates that creating this “culture of learning” is one of the most important investments a company can make.

Keeping it Simple

If you want an employee to stay engaged, you need to make sure that employee feels valued and happy. The 2014 TINYpulse Employee Engagement and Organizational Culture Report indicates that four in five employees feel marginally valued or extremely undervalued at work. These feelings combined with the constant barrage of e-mails, texts, calls, and meetings are leaving employees feeling overwhelmed and unhappy. The Global Human Capital Trends report states that although 70% of the organizations they surveyed recognizes the need to simplify work as an important issue, only 10% of companies have a major work simplification program in place. HR’s role in this simplification process should be to guide the organization on time saving techniques such as how to be more productive through reduction of e-mails and meetings as well as analysis of the efficacy of the implementation of programs such as flexible working conditions, open offices, and work-life balance programs for their particular organization.

There are a variety of facets to effectively managing your team’s learning and development. When evaluating what works best for your organization, it is important to consider the company’s mission as well as its culture. In order to enhance growth, you need to make sure you identify the goals of the corporation as well as those of its employees and develop a plan that encompasses their varied learning styles and preferences while being sympathetic to the human need. Finding the perfect the balance will provide you with satisfied employees who are highly engaged and cutting edge in their unique specialties.