The third annual Workplace Learning Report from LinkedIn is here. The report was eagerly awaited by L&D experts globally and like the earlier editions of the report, the 2019 edition offers a treasure trove of information useful for L&D teams.
The purpose of this blog post is to analyze the 44-page report and offer key takeaways from the report to help you align and transform your training and development plans.
A total of 3,300 employees from various organizations were surveyed to create this report. This included 1,200 talent developers working L&D and HR and 2,100 workplace learners.
Table of Contents
- Spending on L&D is increasing, and budgets are growing for employee development
- Talent Developers seek to address the skills gap among employees
- L&D Teams should start thinking like Marketing Teams
- Managers recommending learning programs to their team members boost learner engagement
- Organizations are adopting new techniques to customize learning for Generation Z employees
Deeper Pockets and Growing Budgets for L&D
The percentage of L&D professionals worried about budget constraints for training has come down to 27% when compared to 49% in 2017. Since 2017, 59% of talent developers spend more of their budget on online learning and 39% say they spend less on instructor-led training (ILT). The key concern for L&D teams has been getting approval from their Finance team for creating and deploying new training content. Be it internal resources developing the learning content or engaging with an external vendor to design training content, budgets do matter.
The 2019 report states that senior management is now more open to spending on L&D efforts to train employees to help them do their work better.
The Problem of Skills Gap
A primary challenge for recruitment teams today is to find employees who are perfectly skilled to do a task and have an open mind to acquire learning. L&D teams globally are looking for effective training solutions that can up-skill employees and prepare them to do their work efficiently. Deploying eLearning solutions internally to boost employee knowledge and productivity is a key part of this skills gap puzzle. Identifying the skill gaps, increasing employee engagement with appropriate training programs, and developing career frameworks are among the key priorities for L&D teams.
Thinking like Marketing Teams
It is quite surprising to note that L&D and Marketing are similar in function. Both marketing and L&D seek to offer new insights and educate users/learners. Talent development only spends 15% of their time promoting employee engagement with learning. It is important to make your employees aware of the learning programs that they can sign up to improve their skills. By deploying role-appropriate training at the right time, organizations can motivate employees to work better. The flexibility to learn at their convenience will really help employees. It is important that L&D teams start to think like marketing teams and promote workplace learning with every resource available. Two interesting stats on email marketing from the report:
Listen to your Manager – Learn what they Recommend
L&D teams need to work in close partnership with line managers to understand which employees need to be trained. Based on the inputs received from the managers, L&D team should assign specific courses to the employees and monitor their progress.
Managers who motivate their team members to learn new skills and regularly recommend programs to them have happier teams which offer peak productivity. Remember, for an organization to succeed it needs to have employees who are happy and motivated. Offer your employees an environment where they can learn, gain new skills, and bloom.
Catering to Generation Z
From baby-boomers and millennials, we are now at a time when Generation Z is forming a key part of our workforce. L&D teams are up with a strange challenge. This is a generation of youngsters who have seen the best of technology and are quite tied to the smartphone. This is the generation that was able to access high-speed internet and use apps for every task. This is a generation that primarily lacks patience and prefers to be on the move and not waste time. This is also a generation of youngsters that have a severe attention span problem that L&D teams have to address with their learning programs. The report clearly states that organizations are customizing learning content that Generation Z workers can easily grasp and learn.
With a clear focus on bite-sized learning and mobile learning solutions, L&D teams are striving to make employee training interesting, engaging, and result-driven.
The LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report continues to offer valuable insight into the changes taking place in the world of L&D and eLearning. Organizations should take heed to the fact that internal employee training is still quite underrated. The only way to make workplace learning more ‘visible’ is to improve the quality of training and promote it actively. As we witness the growth of mobile learning apps and bite-sized learning in tandem, what strategies do you seek to deploy in your organization to foster workplace learning? Do share your thoughts in the ‘Comments’ section.