Learning and development is a lynchpin between agile business needs and continuous upskilling of talent landscape with seamless learner experience at the centre stage.
The upskilling and continuous learning revolution in organizations continue to exponentially grow with or without pandemic situation.
Learning and development group(L&D) in an organization plays a very pivotal role in building the skills and capabilities aligning to the business needs. The role of this group has radically changed and demands to be definitive to be strategic influencers.
Gone are the days when learning teams would go out for training need identification as a norm to business and get unending list of requirements which did not make sense. Today the learning and development team believes in the reality of “less is more “. This means be specific, succinct, rationalized, and meaningful, which can then have metrics of success attached to the deliverables.
To create a positive strategic impact Learning and development group challenges the requests elicited from the business stake holders and gauges the sensitivity, importance, and relevance. Its increasingly important to be consultant to the business and be strategic partners to have a valuable outcome for the enterprise.
L&D has embarked on the journey to capitalize a space in which they can be internal consultants to business and partner with them to solve for a purpose. The objective is not to elicit training needs but to understand the skill and capability development required at the enterprise level aligning to the business forecast. The aim is to continuously upskill the talent landscape through appropriate learning mechanisms and keep them armed for all business opportunities. This enables the business to leverage the competitive advantage.
Its time to shift gears, understand the business essentials, stay abreast of the business roadmap, understand the current skills of the talent landscape and the skill gap to bridge them through appropriate learning offerings.
It is important to acknowledge that all skill and capability gaps need not necessarily be solutioned through learning offerings alone. Training is one of the many and not the only solution to this enterprise wide problem. The sooner learning and development team understands and partners with the business to focus on the scope that they can cover and table out other possible solutions to build required skill and capability, It would be advantageous for all.
Thus “more is less” – The ask from business is give top priorities, specify the target audience, define the objectives and outcomes expected, have a success metrics attached to measure the success and let’s be result oriented.
Understanding the exact business priorities and objectives and aligning the learning offerings to this input is the key to success for Learning & development group.
Strategic partnership by Learning and development is exhibited in multiple ways:
- Firstly, by eluding the business top priorities and having a sharp laser focus on strategic skill and capability development needs.
- Formulating the learning solutions by keeping the learner experience at the centre stage.
- Leveraging technology appropriately for seamless and scalable learning enterprise- wide without overwhelming and complicating the learner’s ability to learn
- Curated and succinct learning content with an opportunity to continuously practice and assess the skills gained.
- Celebrating the learning culture by facilitating the learners and motivating them.
- Adopt meaningful technology platforms and tools like gamified learning simulations and assessments platforms to engage the learners with sophisticated digital experiences and captivating their attention.
- The focus should be on keeping the talent upskilled on relevant business areas and enable productivity and efficiency
L&D has reimagined itself by focusing on positive learning experience for the learner through engaging learning platforms , having the right learning offerings, curating relevant and meaningful digital content for the appropriate target audience and creating a nurturing learning ecosystem comprising of blended options such as on the job learning opportunities, simulations, mentoring and coaching discussion boards, learning platforms and developmental tools.
Some of the learning & development best practices we follow in our organization are solid networking with business stakeholders, established steering committee with key executive members, partnership with talent teams , focus on strategic top priority learning needs through learning academies formed to develop relevant skills for enterprise wide talent landscape in technology, Sales, Products & Services, Leadership and Human skills. Digital learning campus has curated learning content which is a mix blend of enriching internal SME content and featured learning partner content. Built in learning engagements through Hackathon and live Virtual skill-up events.
The crux is Learning and Development teams have shifted gears and work hand in glove with business to be strategic partners to them. Being agile, nimble, adaptable and updated on Industry best practices and latest trends is inevitable to keep the enterprise ahead of the curve and lead from front.
Article Written By our Advisor
Dr. Sonal Sushil Modi
Vice President | Enterprise Technology Learning |Mastercard