Employees can learn something new everyday!

The CIPD’s 2012 Learning and Talent Development Report has reignited a spark in many companies to revise their current learning and education offering; with effective statistics it certainly has provided many business leaders with food for thought.

With business budgets slowly deteriorating the last thing on many minds is to ensure employees have development prospects, however, managers do not realise that by expanding workplace learning and education opportunities they will be helping to combat key issues such as employee engagement, motivation and retention.

The report revealed that two fifth’s of organisations feel that innovation and creativity are critical to their company. Ensuring your employees are kept engaged and stimulated within their working role is key to retaining top talent in the current climate. 95% of a company’s training budget is spent on external courses and conferences, however over 52% of organisations believe that in house development programmes are the most effective form of learning. With the median annual training budget per employee just £276 (a £100 drop since 2011), surely this indicates a need to reallocate funds!

Many companies have now resorted to implementing cost effective and valuable employee development resources in order to boost employee engagement levels. Here we have recently launched our new workplace learning centre, which houses teach-yourself courses available for Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access and Outlook, as well as for various languages.  It’s received copious amounts of interest and praise thus far and Head of p&mm’s Learning Centre Gill Perry answers a few questions on the importance of workplace learning and education development…

Why do you think it is important to introduce schemes like the Learning Centre into the workplace?

“I think its’ vital to offer as many learning solutions as we can to meet the needs of the organisation. We currently offer external training, internally designed classroom style training, opportunities for professional qualifications, on the job training, job shadowing, project work opportunities and coaching, so the Learning Centre offers us the chance to provide an alternative training platform.

People learn in different ways and as our staff are based at different locations and work in an extremely demanding environment, travel and time are always a key consideration for any learning interventions. Often it’s difficult for people to spare a day out of the office so by having training available on the Learning Centre PCs it offers flexibility – it’s more accessible and can be done at the learners own pace at a time that suits them and their workload.

Learning is important to our people for their continuous professional development and contributes to the company, fulfilling it’s objectives, so the investment in a Learning Centre to add to our overall L & D offering is an extremely good one.”

Why did you want to introduce a language learning zone into the workplace? Do you feel it adds value?

“Language training is something I am asked for quite a lot and it comes up on personal development plans following appraisals. Due to the nature of our business, our staff work all over the world and are dealing with international suppliers and clients. Many of them are keen to improve their language skills to add value to the service they offer. “

Sophia Tirelli

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