Future-Ready Armour: Simply Build your Learning and Development Capabilities!

Opinion

Future-Ready Armour: Simply Build your Learning and Development Capabilities!

Future-Ready-Armour-Simply-Build-your-Learning-and-Development-Capabilities

Ayush Sinha, VP – Human Resources, SugarBox Networks

Persistent uncertainty due to the pandemic, the digital revolution, the millennial workforce, and knowledge becoming a highly-priced commodity have placed a premium on reskilling and upskilling. Thus elevating the importance of setting a comprehensive and robust Learning and Development charter within organisations.

The digital age has ushered a radical change for employees today. The millennial workforce is putting a lot of emphasis on constantly upskilling themselves to stay relevant in the market and to adapt to the ever-evolving job trends. Knowledge has become a highly-priced commodity and the need to hire individuals who are skilled at their craft has become extremely critical to the growth of businesses. Hence, setting a comprehensive and robust Learning and Development charter has become one of the most important objectives for any HR leader – irrespective of the size of the organisation.

Despite the current inadvertent times, the question still lingers on. Why this incessant focus on Learning & Development?

Learning and Development plays a key role in various domains of People Strategy. The paramount benefit is the inert ability to assist in hiring and attracting the best talent that is out there and to keep them engaged and motivated at work. Gone are the days when loyalty towards an organisation would be the charm to be rewarded. In today’s world, people are looking at challenging opportunities and if they do not find one in their current organisation, they are happy to look out and join ecosystems that boost growth through constructive challenges. This in its truest essence leads to the next tier in building a great brand. Spending time and effort in building a focused Learning and Development charter goes a long way in differentiating from other organisations. Investing time and money in developing capabilities for employees has a direct impact on the business outcomes. Employees who tend to upskill themselves to keep up with the evolving market, are far more productive and therefore eventually help the business achieve the goals and objectives. Another emerging trend and benefit is that Learning and Development helps reinforce the company’s culture and values. A lot of companies out there are spending time translating values into behavioural competencies to create a framework that helps evaluate the skillsets and subsequently suggest best practices and opportunities in learning, for growth.

“Investing time and money in developing capabilities for employees has a direct impact on the business outcomes. Employees who tend to upskill themselves to keep up with the evolving market, are far more productive and therefore eventually help the business achieve the goals and objectives.

The next natural progression is how to design a future-ready framework that would meet the needs of talent across levels in the organisation. 

Training Needs Analysis 

The first step is to understand the current learning curve in the organisation. This is a crucial step, to begin with, in order to estimate the need-gap and thereby use those insights as fodder, to create a relevant Learning and Development charter. The analysis begins at the top, from where you delve deeper to ascertain the organisation’s goals and expected outcome. Then you move on to understand the objectives of various functions. Finally, you need to analyse the job roles and skill levels of the team members in those respective roles. This approach helps connect business outcomes with learning needs and makes it a lot easier to get a buy-in from the leadership team.

Define Learning Goals and Competencies 

The intent should be to create clear objectives that are measurable and precise. Once the eventual goals have been finalised, it is important to identify competencies that connect the job roles and learning goals. The competency framework should be a brilliant combination of behavioural and functional competencies.

Designing the Learning and Development Charter 

This step involves planning the training delivery. Classic choices are pre-recorded training programs (self-learning at one’s own pace) versus a live instructor-led scheduled session. Online courses versus classroom sessions. Stand-alone training versus multiple modules-based learning programs. There is no correct answer or perfect choice that can be made. The best ideology is to customise, depending on the learning styles of the organisation and individuals, as well as the depth of training needed, adopt one or multiple approaches to design your learning charter. Try to identify and groom training facilitators within the organization – You will be surprised at what and who you discover! You can also leverage help from external training consultants to help you structure this. Use blended learning techniques to include a combination of role plays, experiential activities, on-the-job training, case study analysis, games, and simulation of real-world business scenarios. It makes the learning journey more effective.

Measurement Effectiveness 

The Kirkpatrick Evaluation Model is a great way to evaluate training effectiveness. It has 4 levels of evaluation:

  1. Level I – Reaction: Participants rate their experience through a simple survey post the training
  2. Level II – Learning: Pre-learning and post-learning assessments helps measure if the participants acquired the desired knowledge and skills
  3. Level III – Behaviour: Change in the proficiency of behavioural competencies of the participants indicate the impact that the training had. This is evaluated over time through one’s experience on the job
  4. Level IV – Results: This is a direct correlation to impact on business metrics and key performance indicators

Living in the times of a dynamic and ever-evolving business environment that relies extensively on skills, it is thus imperative that organizations adopt and adapt to this change, at a rapid pace. HR leaders need to act quickly and invest time, money, and resources to build Learning and Development charters, which are aligned to achieve business goals and at the same time focus on enhancing and developing employee capabilities.

The ultimate goal is to ensure that business grows on par with the growth curve of its employees because these then become the stepping stones to employee retention, loyalty, and the making of valuable internal brand ambassadors!

“HR leaders need to act quickly and invest time, money, and resources to build Learning and Development charters, which are aligned to achieve business goals and at the same time focus on enhancing and developing employee capabilities”.

Future-Ready-Armour-Simply-Build-your-Learning-and-Development-Capabilities

 

 

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