In the ‘Putting Learners First’ Webinar, VP of Product Marketing, Todd Tauber dived into the problems with L&D approaches, what it’ll take to start putting learners first, and how to start rewiring L&D to provide what people and employers need. In Part II of the Webinar Recap: ‘Putting Learners First’ we’ll dive into what it takes to start putting learners first. Read Part I: Why It’s Time to Rethink L&D Approaches here.

1. Start putting learners first
We think that the most important shift to make here is about mindsets; it’s putting learners not just at the center, but at the beginning. That’s not as easy as it sounds. Pretty much everyone in L&D recognizes that most learning doesn’t happen inside classrooms or learning management systems (LMSs).
– The 70:20:10 learning framework – which says only 10% of learning comes from formal training, 20% from other people and 70% from experiences on-the-job – is almost 20 years old. It’s amazing, then, to see how far away most corporate L&D teams are.

The first step toward recovery is recognizing that you have a problem. When CLOs and their teams acknowledge that this is, in fact, a problem, then they start approaching a lot of things differently. They also start investing their time and budget money very differently.

2. Stop trying to command and control, and start empowering

A big one is the role and definition of L&D itself.

If you believe, for example, that the role of the organization’s learning team is to manage training and development, then you make some very different choices about some very basic questions:

Who’s responsible for driving L&D activity – HR and L&D or employees and their managers?
When and where does learning happen – on a schedule at work or anytime, anywhere?
What and why do people learn – for operational efficiency and compliance or to build strategic capabilities and performance?
How do they learn – mainly through formal classes and online courses or in the flow of their work?

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Janice Burns, the CLO at MasterCard, believes her team’s jobs are to be, “motivators and facilitators more than anything else.” And as a result, they prioritize providing people with the tools, resources and access they need to do their jobs better.

3. Stop making learning one-size-fits-all, and start offering choices
Thinking that way has prompted MasterCard to experiment with all kinds of new, unconventional approaches to learning, development and performance improvement.

Examples include:
– Creating animated role plays and games to teach new hires – especially recent college grads – compliance.
– Pairing short videos with quizzes to get new, external IT hires up to speed on the payments industry so they can do their jobs better.
– Invitations for 5-minute tutorials on people management skills directly into leaders’ calendars.
– Producing scheduled, 3 to 6-week blended learning journeys to get product managers up to speed on innovation and entrepreneurship techniques, and to diffuse infuse their marketing managers with up-to-date digital skills.

MasterCard still has an LMS and course catalog, but now they’re also acknowledging that they have an incredibly diverse workforce spread around the world – who all want and need different things. MasterCard segments those people into logical groups and then they design, develop and deliver differentiated solutions based on what makes sense for them.

By doing that, they’re giving learners as well as L&D professionals choices. Guess what? It’s working.

4. Stop making learners have to, and start making them want to.

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Something else happens when you approach L&D from the learners’ perspectives: You tend to focus more effort on the things they care about – like leadership, soft-skills and sales. Coincidentally, these are also the things that enable strategy and drive business performance.

That doesn’t mean you don’t do the operational and compliance stuff – for example on desktop applications or proprietary processes or generic training for industry certifications. Of course you still do those things, they are still important. Higher-performing L&D organizations – the ones who are better aligned with business priorities and who deliver more effective learning more efficiently – make it a point to do them smarter.

Takeaway 2
Modernizing workplace learning demands some big shifts in how we think about L&D. And those shifts start with putting learners first.

 

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Here’s the full Webinar: Putting Learners First

 

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On May 12 in our Webinar titled “Putting Learners First” VP of Product Marketing Todd Tauber discussed how the balance of power in learning and development is shifting from HR and L&D to employees and managers. Here’s why we think its finally time to start rethinking L&D approaches and priorities.

1. L&D teams are struggling to connect with learners
People’s #1 job concern is obsolescence. 60% of workers – Millennials and non-Millennials alike – think the skills they have now will NOT be what they need in 3 years (Oxford Economics / SAP, 2020 Workforce). Learning and development are essential. However, in survey after survey, those same workers say the education and training they’re getting at work is not preparing them for whatever’s next.

What’s happening? There are two things are going on here:
– A lot of people simply don’t have access to training; less than half of college grads got any formal training in their first jobs, for example.
-The bigger issue is that a lot of the opportunities people do have are not well connected to their jobs, career plans or work habits.

2. Conventional L&D is too slow to keep-up with learning needs
The proof of that is in the data. Up and down the career path, organizations say they don’t have enough people with the right knowledge and skills.
– Almost 60% of employers think new college graduates are not adequately prepared for the workforce, and many of those kids agree!
– That skills gap balloons as people move into management and leadership roles. 74% of companies report persistent shortages of talented managers.
– 51% of organizations say they don’t have a strong bench of executives.

Why is this happening? The nature of work is changing:
– Routine tasks are being automated. More and more jobs require primarily creative thinking and problem solving skills, not just the ability to follow directions. As an example, think about machine operators. They’re not just pulling levers and pushing buttons anymore- they’re programming and monitoring robots.
-Everything is changing constantly. The half-life of many skills these days is just 2.5 to 5 years. Sales and marketing is another prime example. Data, software, social media and e-commerce have fundamentally changed how people buy everything from books and clothes to enterprise software and jet engines. Those changes and the effects are still unfolding.

Products, competition and regulations can all change in a matter of weeks. Yet, it still takes 5 to 12 weeks to create just one hour of interactive e-learning. Multiply that across a typical company with dozens of job roles at multiple levels, and it’s clear that L&D can’t keep up.

3. Traditional L&D is out of sync with how people really learn
What people learn is only half the equation, though. The other half is how they keep their skills sharp. Traditional L&D practices are stuck, stubbornly, in the past.
– More than 75% of what L&D teams do is still formal training, mostly in classrooms, with instructors. While a growing portion of that is virtual classrooms and self-paced online courses, that misses the point.

-Less than ¼ of workers say they’ve completed an entire course – of any kind – in the last 24 months.

Meanwhile, more than 70% of people say they’ve learned something work-related from an article, video or book this week.

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As BP’s director of learning innovation and technology, Nick Shackleton-Jones, puts it: Most L&D organizations are only beginning to think about shifting from courses to performance support. Meanwhile, employees already rely on their networks and Google to get most of what they need informally, in the moment. And they’re starting to integrate apps into the way they work, too.

4. Learners are now empowered to take control of their own learning
The above disconnects are turning into a big problem for a lot of L&D teams because employees and their managers are increasingly empowered – largely through the Internet – to take control of their own development. If they don’t get what they need and want from their L&D or HR business partners, they’ll just go get it themselves. Many already do that. Technology training is probably the best example:
– Over the last 5 years, Chief Learning Officers have cut IT training nearly in half — from 9% of their spending to 5%. At the time when technology has become more critical to business than ever before!
– In response, Chief Technology Officers have almost doubled training, from 3% of their budgets to 5%. Keep in mind IT budgets are generally much bigger than L&D budgets.
– And on top of that, almost ⅔ of IT workers dug into their own pockets for training and certifications.

This is not limited to IT, though.
– 43% of workers say they look for learning opportunities outside their company at least half the time.

Takeaway

Learners-Degreed
The big takeaway in all this is that conventional L&D methods just aren’t responsive enough to keep up with today’s learners. So it’s time to try some new approaches. That starts with changing some pretty fundamental attitudes about the role and priorities of L&D organizations. You know the issues, and in Part II of the webinar recap we’ll make you ready to be part of the solution.

 

Here’s the full Webinar: Putting Learners First

 

When it comes to Learning and Development approaches, it’s time to put the Learner first. Here’s a quick recap if you missed our May Webinar, catch up and tweet us any questions or comments @degreed.

Let’s start with why. You may notice some problems or feel a need for change within your processes. Here’s why we think it’s time to rethink L&D priorities:

First, L&D teams are struggling to form connections with their learners. Here are the numbers: 60% of workers think the skills they have now will not be what they need in 3 years. Learning and development are clearly essential, however, 85% of employees do not feel like the training they get at work is preparing them for their next position.


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Second, the landscape of work has changed- and most current L&D systems can’t keep up with what people need to know or how people like to learn and search out information. Skills are quickly changing, more jobs require primarily creative thinking and problem solving skills- not just the ability to follow directions. What learners need to know can change in a matter of weeks, but it takes 5-12 weeks to create just one hour of interactive learning.

Learners get work-related information from articles, videos, and books weekly while traditional L&D’s are still doing mostly formal training- classroom and instructor style.

These disconnects all result in learners taking control of their own learning. Conventional L&D methods aren’t working for today’s learners- it’s time to try new approaches.

Here are 4 helpful ways to make the shift in mindset and provide learners with the information and tools they need.

1. Start putting learners first. This is a big mindshift, it means to put learners not just at the center, but at the beginning. Where they learn from others and from experiences more than they do in formal training. When you acknowledge there’s a problem in the current process, you can start working towards a solution- and investing resources differently.

2. Stop trying to command and control- start empowering. After making the shift to put learners at the beginning you’ll start to answer these questions differently about the role of the L&D department:

-Who’s responsible for driving L&D activity – HR and L&D or employees and their managers?
– When and where does learning happen – on a schedule at work or anytime, anywhere?
– What and why do people learn – for operational efficiency and compliance or to build strategic capabilities and performance?
– How do they learn – mainly through formal classes and online courses or in the flow of their work?

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3. Stop making learning one-size-fits-all, and start offering choices.

Give learners choices on the types of content they can consume. Create different options- think short videos and quizzes, 5-minute tutorials on management skills, animated role plays, etc.

4. Stop Making Learners Have To- Start Making Them Want To.

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Focus more effort on things learners care about-leadership, soft-skills and sales.  These are also the things that enable strategy and drive business performance. This doesn’t mean you need to stop operational and compliance stuff, it just means you need to make it a point to do them smarter.

Now that you’ve accessed the problem and had the mind-shift, it’s time to talk rewiring and getting to work.

The hard part: Doing the work to actually reinvent workplace learning. Transforming how L&D works all at once can be a huge job. It can take months and years, the key is not cost cutting and reorganizing, it’s investing time and money differently. Here are 4 tips for reinventing L&D.

1. Make it simpler to create (and curate) learning. Learning has shifted, it’s no longer broadcasted format, one-to-many. People are learning from crowdsourcing and collaborating, they’re learning many-to-many. A lot of learners need better tools for creating, curating, and sharing learning. Almost 90% of workers say sharing knowledge is an important or essential part of learning what they need for their jobs, yet only 1/3 of employers have invested in dedicated social learning systems.

2. Make it Faster to Find Learning. We’re all overwhelmed by how much information is out there, and we’re all impatient. If we don’t find what we need- and fast- we’ll move on. With so much learning content out there, it can add up to a lot of clutter.

3. Make it easier to access learning. Because making it faster to find the right content isn’t much use if your learner’s can’t access it. Make it mobile. More than half of workers say they would like to be able to access learning on mobile devices. While they may not all need it to do their jobs, they want it.

4. Make it possible to track all learning. Both L&D organizations and individual employees need better ways to track, measure, and value all of their learning. CLO’s feel the need and urgency to demonstrate the value of an organizations investment in L&D, but less than 30% of big companies capture much data on their informal learning activity. It’s awfully hard to manage L&D when you can’t see the whole picture.

It’s time to make a shift and take actions to empower learners with the right content and the right tools to learn, apply, and track it.  Here are the final 3 takeaways.

1. Conventional L&D methods just aren’t responsive enough to keep up with today’s learners or work landscape. It’s time to take new approaches

2. Modernizing workplace learning demands big shift in how we think about L&D- it starts with putting the learners first.

3. Putting learners first requires new, different, and better tools for:

-Creating and curating learning.
-Discovering and finding learning.
-Accessing learning.
-valuing learning.

And that means all kinds of learning- not just formal training. 

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What do you see in the future of L&D methods within organizations?

Degreed’s mission is to make all learning count, that’s why we make it easy for organizations and their people to discover, curate and track ALL their learning. For more information on how we do this check out get.degreed.com 

Did you miss our webinar on Building a Learning Culture? Catch up with this wrap-up and tell us your thoughts on learning cultures by tweeting us @Degreed

First, why build a learning culture?

LearningBreakfast

In 2009 Bersin by Deloitte surveyed 40,000 organizations to see how they used various HR & training processes and how they performed on 10 business measures. They discovered “Among all the HR and training processes we study, the single biggest driver of business impact is the strength of an organization’s learning culture.” The study found the following about High-Impact Learning Cultures:

-32% more likely to be first to market

-58% more likely to have skills to meet future demand

-37% greater employee productivity

Here’s how to start building a Learning Culture that can bring lasting payoffs.

LearningCulture

Of a survey we administered, 89% of learners would rather be given credit for their own learning than learn at HR’s direction. It is an impossibility for you to know the needs, desires, goals, and real-time challenges for every individual within your organization, so how can you be expected to tailor fit learning initiatives that are top down? You can’t. It has to come from the bottom up.

LearningControl

 

For a Learning Culture to thrive, you must give the freedom to learn to the individual. It doesn’t matter what they learn, just that they are learning. Employees have goals and desires outside of our organizations, but part of their lives is their work. This means that while people will desire to learn about things like WWII history, and deep sea diving, they will also want to learn how to become better at their jobs within our organizations. Focus on making learning social, and implement it using these 3 key principals:

1. Trust. Trust that your employees want to develop new skills, and they will spend some time learning things that will improve their jobs within your organization.

2. Empower. Empower your employees to learn with time, money, and resources. For example, at Degreed, every employee is given $100 in FlexEd money a month to support whatever learning they want.

3. Personalize. Support people’s own unique learning strategies.

When the strategy, objectives, and policies are established and communicated within the organization, the culture and action can follow.

Here are the 3 big takeaways for building learning cultures:

1. Learning cultures focus on the needs of the employee and empower them to achieve their dreams.

2. For learning cultures to develop, it doesn’t matter what people learn.

3. Alignment is achieved through strong mission, strategy, & clear objectives.

Do you have questions about building a learning culture? Tweet them to us @degreed and check out the full webinar here:

 

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