Workplaces have evolved rapidly in the past two years with strong training technologies like LMS for training becoming imperative. As hybrid and remote work are now an integral part of work cultures, L&D budgets have been required to undergo some realignment to suit this scenario.
In turn, L&D and HR professionals are left in quite a conundrum while zeroing down on budgeting priorities, especially when organizations are looking to achieve a lot more now from their annual expenditure on training.
According to a Capterra survey of nearly 300 HR leaders, 49% of organizations are increasing their L&D spend in 2022 — up from 41% in 2021, a 20% increase YOY. As per the 2022 LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report too, the percent of L&D pros who expect to have more spending power this year has reached a six-year high.
All in all, it’s now more important than ever to budget wisely and re-evaluate to ensure that your L&D resources are being used in the best possible manner. There have to be regular reviews to evaluate the spending and determine whether adjustments are needed for future investments.
To get the most out of your L&D budget, you must be strategic about your spending. In this blog, we’ll talk about how you can maximize the returns on your L&D investment and how you should prioritize learning spends in 2022 and beyond.
Here are a few areas that you can focus upon:
Attracting & Retaining Employees
In today’s competitive corporate landscape, employees see training as a benefit. Several studies, old and new, have showed that when employees receive robust learning opportunities, they report being more engaged in and satisfied with their jobs. For instance, as per the LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report, a whopping 93% of employees said they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their learning and development. Similarly, as per a Gallup survey, 65% of workers believe employer-provided upskilling is very important when evaluating a potential new job.
This just shows how important L&D is in both attracting as well as retaining employees in the organization. Offering an employee development program with an effective LMS for corporate learning will help your organization stand out as an employer and build a strong brand with potential new hires.
Upskilling & Reskilling
While skills gaps have existed in the market for a while, they have become more prevalent since the pandemic. As per a McKinsey research, 69% organizations are doing more skill building now than they did before the crisis. At a time when there is a dearth of skills, the onus is on L&D teams to focus on upskilling and reskilling employees by building a strong learning strategy.
Training programs must have at their core the objective of helping employees learn new skills and develop their existing ones. Without investments in skilling, there is a high chance that the workforce may feel demotivated, leading to attrition. Once employees receive good skilling opportunities, they see growth and elevation as a likely outcome.
Virtual, Self-paced Training
Among the many changes the pandemic brought in, one is that organizations are preferring to earmark more budgets for online training solutions as compared to traditional instructor-led courses. While remote and hybrid work still continues to be the norm in many places, companies are looking for ways to meet the learning needs of all their employees, regardless of their locations.
This means replacing some, if not all, traditional classroom learning with virtual, self-paced training. Investing in LMS systems for training that support remote learners as well as in-office employees is a great solution. It is important to let people learn at their own pace and convenience so that learning does not feel like a burden to them. This will help employees learn despite their busy schedules.
The one-size-fits-all method of implementing training initiatives is a passe. Learners understand and retain information better when the learning programs are curated to cater to their individual strengths and circumstances.
Considering this, one area that needs high focus in terms of L&D investments is personalized learning that puts learner needs on a higher pedestal and crafts training accordingly. Personalized learning plays a pivotal role in ensuring learners are getting the most value from the training programs. It offers them greater control and flexibility over their learning, making it more impactful.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion training
At a time when businesses are looking for ways to innovate, grow, and outpace competition, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) have become the keys to achieving these goals. As per the 2022 LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report, 43% leaders feel that L&D shares full responsibility for a DE&I strategy. True enough, DE&I are no more just nice-to-have, but are essential components of the corporate training strategy for any company.
While good investments in a solid DE&I strategy in the workplace leads to increased profitability, it also boosts creativity and ensures the workplace is a safe space where all voices are heard.
Regardless of what L&D investments you have made this year or are planning to make in the coming year, it’s important to remember that the development of your employees should always be at the heart of all your L&D efforts. The overall objective is to support employees and help them succeed in their professional goals.
Once you prioritize employee development, you create the path for your organization’s success. From employee retention to greater profit margins, happy employees are the reason behind all your achievements.