As we continue to get accustomed to the new normal created by Covid19, business leaders have also realised that investing in learning and development programs are becoming more important as well as challenging.
According to the 2018 Training Industry Reportv, over $87.6 billion was spent on corporate training and development across the United States:
- $11 billion: spent on outside products and services (content like LinkedIn Learning, etc.)
- $29.6 billion: training expenditures (i.e., travel, facilities, equipment, etc.)
- $47 billion: training payroll (internal staff, freelancers, contractors, partners, suppliers, etc.)
Contrast this against the National Business Survey by Singapore Business Federation that shows only 12% of the 700 companies polled invested in better training for their staff in the same measurement year.
The “terrible” number on training investment suggests the need for a mindset change among all employers here, added Mr David Black, managing director of Blackbox research, which collaborated with SBF on the survey.
Read this in conjunction with the report by LinkedIn that reveals more than two in five employees in Singapore have left a company because they felt that it did not provide enough learning and development (L&D) opportunities.
There is also a huge mismatch between what is offered by employers and what employees want, with only 17 per cent of employees in Singapore satisfied with their company’s L&D programmes.
L&D is not just talent retention strategy, but it is also a good way to level up your people that plays a big part in any corporate strategies.
For companies that are struggling to kickstart this transformation, here are xxx ways to look into:
- Provide the incentive to coach and mentor. Managers are mostly measured based on business performance with process largely ignored. Depending on the individuals, you can get a great coach or a micromanager. Organisations need to provide incentivise managers to grow their people so they can be groomed to take on more and help to businesses to the next level.
- Just-in-time learning, not just-in-case. Learning has always been a frontloading affair starting from our school systems where we learn years of knowledge that we may only get to use a small fraction of in the workplace. Learning and development must be adapted quicker to what is needed at that point in time. This would mean more micro content that is specific to the roles and the department versus hours of content that is generic across the entire organisation.
- Employees must own their career development. Individuals must own, self-direct, and control their learning futures. This is not passing the entire buck to them. Organisations need to understand that every learner learns differently and cater to those difference so that knowledge absorption can be maximised for each individual employee. And at the same time, allow them to pursue their own learning journey and not dictate for everybody with one linear path.
- Provide flexible learning options. Employees with already heavy workload often cannot find time to undergo their training obligations. This not only add stress to their already stressful deadline, but you end up with someone attending the training physically but mentally engaged on their laptop catching up with their work. Companies must respond by adopting on-demand and mobile solutions that make learning opportunities more readily accessible for your people.
- Match different learning options to different learning styles. With five generations actively in the workforce, organizations must restructure the way employees learn and the tools and activities they use to correctly match the different styles, preferences, and expectations of employees. For example, Millennials came of age using cell phones, computers, and video game consoles, so they expect to use these technologies to support their learning activities.
It is obvious the value of learning and developments programs while we grasp with the return on investment as managers. With better understanding of the learners intent, the emerging trends and a belief that people are the ultimate business differentiators, you can position your organisations to pick the right solution to level up your people and your business at the same time.
Alt Learning by PeopleStrong is created to solve most of these challenges with a mobile-centric product that allows on-demand learning. Learners can also pick their learning pathways and get tested via the myriad of assessment options. Helping people to pick up new knowledge just in time and not become a huge time suck.
To learn more about Alt Learning, go to https://www.peoplestrong.com/alt-learning/