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The Future of Learning: Why Workplace L&D is Non-Negotiable

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Photo by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash

As a business leader, providing your workforce with opportunities to grow should be one of your highest priorities. There are two reasons for this. First, employees are rating ‘not being given opportunities to learn and grow’ as the number 1 reason to leave a job. Second, COVID19 has accelerated the need for enhanced digital and human skills. This is especially acute when 32% of organizations have replaced full-time employees with contingent workers.

Striking a balance between what employees want and what’s in the interests of your organization isn’t easy to do. But, with the need for upskilling and reskilling appearing more urgent, the future of learning is no longer a plan for tomorrow but a necessity for today.

What is the future of learning?

From the perspective of your employees, learning and development (L&D) is an essential component in their career goals. A 2019 report on the future of learning showed 63% of employees accept personal responsibility for L&D. This is despite relying on their employers to provide the tools and materials.

Businesses are also adapting to the changing needs of the next generation. 74% of talent managers say they plan to change their learning programs to suit Gen Z.

It’s also worth noting that modern L&D programs are being designed with learners at the center. In practice, this means giving staff what they need to learn, in the places and times they demand it.

In the US, experts suggest those working from home will increase to 30% by 2021. With so many working with increased mobility, you’ll need technology to support them. Deploying the right learning content, measuring L&D performance, and adapting to emerging skills will become the norm.

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Can L&D evidence good ROI?

No-one can predict how the pandemic will play out. But, where 48% of remote workers will continue to work away from the office following the outbreak, upskilling staff will depend on agile and accessible technology.

Could the future of learning rest with online learning?

There has been a notable shift from instructor-led learning to online. Recent analysis says 16% of employers are using data collection to monitor remote employees. In their 2019 report, Cognizant defined this shift to online with a framework of three M’s — Measurement, Motivation, and Mobility. They also found 40% of companies aren’t using data to measure how their employees learn. A further workplace learning report showed 24% of L&D professionals don’t use any measurements to assess learner’s engagement.

By not defining the difference that L&D programs make, the ability to determine positive ROI becomes close-to-impossible. For BMJ’s Chief Executive Officer, Chris Jones, measuring the performance of employees is anyway a better, more strategic approach than focusing on the bottom-line:

“ROI is driven by financial directors asking to see the bottom-line benefits for every pound spent, but it’s arguably just one limited measure,”

“Evaluating the impact of investing in people, however, looks at how things have improved in terms of proficiency levels or staff retention, so it’s a more strategic set of questions relating to business performance.”

The future of workplace learning starts with an investment in L&D

With AI and digital automation set to transform working lives sooner than expected, the future of education depends on effective digital learning solutions. This means companies must be ready to provide remote workers, digital nomads, and digital natives with what they expect — learner-led, data-driven L&D experiences.

Of course, meeting these needs requires the right technology. The ability to provide data-driven content, measurements and assessments rely on effective digital solutions.

To help more companies address this urgent need for the future of learning, Capabilia is offering online learning experiences that reach employees across the globe. If your business needs to shift its L&D strategy to online learning, contact us now to discuss which digital learning solution could meet the future — and current — learning needs of your teams.

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