The world is changing faster and faster, and the most critical traits a human can possess are agility and adaptability, according to this white paper from Microsoft on the new work culture.
Until ten years ago you could continue your entire working life with the knowledge you gained during a study. That is different nowadays, as we read in a report from the World Economic Forum. About half of what students learn in a four-year engineering degree is out of date by the time they graduate.
It is therefore important for a company to make a strategic choice and to create the right learning culture.
What role does HR play in this?
1. Make time
In order to study, the employee must invest time. As an employer, you can meet this by allowing the employee to study in the ‘time of the boss'.
Is that just to go to a meeting or course day or also to study? How do you check that? Does the time made available relate in some way to the study load? What happens if the employee does not successfully complete the training?
There is nothing in the law about training leave. So there are no standard answers to these questions. Think about this as an HR department and draw up clear guidelines to avoid misunderstandings.
2. Make agreements
It is of course important to keep track of the results of a study, course or other way of learning.
Draw up clear KPIs for this. If you use a learning platform, it is often easier to track the KPIs.
For example, in the HR Consultant UK learning platform you can see at a glance how many hours an employee has studied, what his or her scores are, what active courses are and what have been completed.
3. Identify the benefits for the employee
We have highlighted the benefits of learning for the employer in this blog. But of course the employee must also be convinced of the importance.
If development plays a clear role within an organization, it has a stimulating effect.
Let employees who follow a course tell their story. After all, there is nothing more motivating than to hear from a colleague why it is good to keep learning.
Also look for other inspiring ways to show how personal development contributes to an interesting career path. For example, let your employees join a different department.
This gives them a good idea of what else is possible within the company besides their own job.
4. Organize internal knowledge sessions
You can of course let employees talk about the training they are doing. It is even more motivating if you ask an employee to include a part of the education or training.
Have him or her organize an abbreviated version of the training, course or education, in which the colleagues receive the most important points.
Or organize other internal knowledge sessions. For example, invite an expert to talk about a specific topic or arrange a workshop with a specific theme.
5. Get ‘learning' on the strategic agenda of the board of directors
Companies that make a strategic choice for knowledge development and that continuously learn to embrace them are demonstrably more successful than companies that do not. Nevertheless, the discussion about knowledge development often stops at the content of the training.
What people do not always realize is that neglecting knowledge development is a true assassin. A lower level of knowledge of employees has a direct, negative impact on issues such as customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, efficiency and also on turnover.
Determine a future-oriented strategy for knowledge development, which, in addition to practical matters such as money and learning materials, also pays sufficient attention to the desired learning culture and embedding in the organization.
Need a little more baggage to convince the management? Then download our whitepaper.
6. Provide diversity in the teaching materials offered
Everyone has a different preference for learning. One person prefers to sit in a classroom once a week, another is happy sitting alone in an attic room with a laptop in front of his or her nose.
Some people remember learning material better when concrete examples are mentioned, others prefer to learn the theory. Therefore, make sure that there are different types of courses and training in your offer.
Does an employee not know what his or her favorite learning style is? The internet is full of learning style tests, like this one, based on David Kolb's theory.
7. Inform employees of the learning objectives
Make a habit of sharing the learning objectives. At HR Consultant UK, for example, our learning goals are on the agenda of every quarterly meeting.
This creates a big inconvenience, but also ensures that learning remains in the retina of the organization and the employees.
Wondering if your organization is ready to embrace continuous learning? Then complete our Continuous Learning Quickscan. Could you use some help in getting continuous learning on the agenda? We are happy to help you!