Invest in learning and development - you’re worth it

In the fast-moving world of business, it’s easy to lose track of the latest buzzwords, but one word is always relevant – value

These times of pinched budgets mean nothing gets the go-ahead without proving its worth to the business. Training and development is no exception. Learning and development (L&D) teams need to demonstrate the value of learning in improving business performance.

Measuring return on investment is one of the key findings from the Learning Insight Report 2014, produced last November by City & Guilds Kineo and e.learning age. Released annually, the report explores challenges learning and development professionals face, and charts trends in the industry, based on interviews with directors and managers at organisations around the globe. It recommends seven key behaviours for your L&D team to cultivate to drive improvement in the quality of learning and development.

Kineo

RISE OF APPLIED LEARNING

The business benefits of e-learning have been well documented. It’s an efficient way of reaching remote workers and worldwide teams. It appeals to the Generation Y and Z members of our workforce. It’s accessible and easy to embed into the working day. It can provide a cost-effective alternative to multiple training sessions. But what really emerged as a key trend in the report is the importance of applied learning that has been linked to and applied to real-world experiences.

Getting the right learning blend means you can tick all the boxes – cost effective, widely available, relevant and measurable

Learners want resources they can use on the job right away, delivered in an accessible and embedded way. When this happens, measuring impact and value becomes easier as it is aligned to performance improvement. Smart L&D managers must keep their ear to the ground of the business, identifying pain points and designing training that responds accordingly.

TECHNOLOGY AS AN ENABLER

The report also shows that L&D teams are already using a blend of traditional face-to-face and online e-learning. And they’re now moving towards more sophisticated blends and embracing every aspect of new technology. More organisations than ever before are integrating bitesize content, social networks and gamification or offering learning in the format of a game. The key is integrating the knowledge of your business experts within the blend. Peer-to-peer knowledge-sharing has more value than everyday social media.

But we’re in a changing world. Learners are influenced by consumer technology and expect learning to be as open and accessible at work as it is at home. As we’re all embracing technology more in our lives, could embedded learning be the answer? With a shift to shorter, more focused and performance-related content accessed via portals and apps that are freely available to learners, it could well be.

Getting the right learning blend means you can tick all the boxes – cost effective, widely available, relevant and measurable. By using a sophisticated blend, your L&D team can provide learning that taps into your business objectives. Putting that objective into your L&D manager’s key performance indicators could improve the value you get from your learning investment.

Visit http://resources.kineo.com/insights to download a free copy of the Learning Insight Report 2014