2018 workplace learning in a nutshell
LinkedIn, ‘the world’s largest professional network’ has recently issued its 2018 Workplace Learning Report.
Workplace learning is all about talent development
In these fast-paced times, staying ahead of the curve when it comes to skills is a challenge. In addition, the tightening labour market means business have to work hard to hold onto their best talent and to fill key positions. And individuals are conscious of staying relevant in the age of automation.
Enter talent development, which is a relatively new phenomenon. The talent development function creates learning opportunities to enable employee growth and achievement.
A balancing act
LinkedIn’s research shows that today’s talent developer is balancing competing demands from executives, managers, and employees alike. Because they must play a critical role in shaping future workforce strategy, while delivering hyper-relevant content to support employee needs of today. At the same time, they cater these vast efforts to a multi-generational workforce with varied learning preferences.
To balance these competing demands, talent development leaders today are embracing the role of “relationship builder”—cultivating the relationships that are the backbone of a learning culture that thrives in a workforce of constant change.
According to LinkedIn the talent developer’s most pressing questions are:
- How are savvy talent development leaders adapting to the pace of change in today’s dynamic world of work?
- Why do employees demand learning and development resources, but don’t make the time to learn?
- How do executives think about learning and development?
- Are managers the missing link to successful learning programs?
Workplace learning trends
The answers to these questions can be found in the top 2018 Workplace learning trends (according to LinkedIn):
- Soften the impact of automation.
Talent developers, executives, managers and employees agree that the #1 priority for talent development in 2018 is training for soft skills (such as leadership, communication and collaboration). It might sound counterintuitive, but as technology accelerates, soft skills are in high demand to fuel people and business growth.
- Balance today’s challenges with tomorrow’s opportunities.
As the shelf life of skills shrinks, business leaders worry that talent developers are focused on training for today’s skill demands, at the expense of preventing tomorrow’s skill gaps. While these leaders ranked tomorrow’s skills as the #2 priority for L&D initiatives in 2018, talent developers placed it as #6 on their list.
- The rise of digital is transforming talent development.
Talent developers are depending more on online learning solutions to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse, multi-generational workforce—and there’s no turning back.
- If employees can’t find the time to learn, reduce the friction.
‘Getting employees to make time for learning’ is identified as the #1 challenge facing talent development in 2018. Yet, 94% of employees say that they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career development. The modern organisation needs to meet learners where they already are—aligning development opportunities with employee aspirations. Also, they need to engage them through the platforms where they are already spending their time.
- Amplify your manager relationships. 56% of employees say that they would spend more time learning if their manager directed them to complete a specific course in order to gain or improve their skills. Talent developers name “increased manager involvement” as the #2 challenge they face.
LinkedIn concludes that talent developers should create the learning opportunities that enable employee growth and achievement within an organisation. At the same time, a successful learning culture needs employee engagement, executive endorsement, and manager involvement.