The events of the recent times have ushered in a new era in the L&D industry as learning continues to play a central role in employee retention strategies. This is the perfect time for organizations to invest in robust learning and skilling initiatives considering 50% of all employees are likely to need reskilling by 2025, as adoption of technology increases, according to the World Economic Forum's Future of Jobs Report.
Sadly though, L&D programs are often viewed as a one-time solution to learner needs. Employees finish a course, assimilate the information and then move on to their routine work. While training and development programs are a great way for learners to engage with information, there have to be more efforts if the aim is to bring about a behavior change in the workforce.
In fact, a lack of learning opportunities has been one of the top reasons for the mass exodus of employees leading to The Great Resignation. Through this, L&D teams have a massive role to play in boosting employee retention. From creating engaging learning and development programs to mental health support, L&D is indispensable in addressing The Great Resignation and employee retention.
So what ways can L&D teams adopt to give the workforce a sense of belonging, value and purpose? We recommend these five ways for companies to retain their talent:
1.Focus on Upskilling
Given that competency is now the new currency, it’s imperative to undertake upskilling and reskilling for the workforce to pave the way for transformation through learning. With technology changing fast, organizations that want their employees to grow will have to focus on providing them with vital training so that they acquire the most in-demand skills. Upskilling fresh talent is the best way to help them learn work-ready skills, and reskilling experienced ones is essential to keep them engaged and productive.
One effective way towards skilling is to opt for ready-to-use, curated courses. Ready-to-use, curated courses is content that is created after actively sifting through existing digital online learning, identifying valuable content, organizing it in the right fashion, and making it available to learners. A perfect course is available in a ready-to-use format that just has to be linked to your LMS.
2.Create Learning for the Hybrid Workforce
The world knows by now that hybrid work is the new norm and it is likely to stay in the foreseeable future. While L&D has already built learning and development experiences for this workforce, there need to be more focussed efforts that aid hybrid work. L&D teams need to integrate the flexibility of self-paced online training and development sessions with highly engaging live interactions to suit the hybrid workplace culture.
The rise of social and collaborative learning technologies means learners already have a great deal of online interaction. While designing L&D sessions, factors like webinar fatigue, excessive sessions, scheduling challenges and facilitator time and expense have to be considered. Learner engagement is a critical factor. While traditional programs are often implemented in one- or two-day workshops, hybrid programs may need to be implemented over several weeks.
3.Support Employee Development and Growth
The current business landscape is dynamic and demanding with rapid disruptions almost all the time. It’s a challenge for organizations to keep pace with these ever-evolving changes and at the same time focus on employee retention in a fluid labour market. But it’s upto organizations to bear this in mind and encourage their workers to succeed inside the office and out.
There’s so much that a company can achieve when it has the right kind of teams in place because, after all, employees are a company’s greatest asset. An IBM study has found that teams that are well-trained have managed to increase their productivity by 10%. Arming employees with the ability to do their jobs better is always a smart move.
As L&D teams focus on plugging knowledge gaps and upskilling employees, companies have a larger likelihood of increasing their profit. To this end, it’s important to undertake regular training and development sessions that can engage employees as well as help them upskill.
4.Identify Soft Skills Gaps
The pandemic has made it amply clear that soft skills are as important for the workforce as hard skills and developing them is a part of L&D’s responsibilities. Soft skills are related to personal traits and non-technical attributes and include areas like communication, time management, creativity, critical thinking and active listening among others.
While focusing on productivity is seminal, organizations also need to take a more hands-on approach to identify and develop soft skills for employees as well as managers. Organizations that offer training opportunities for soft-skill development have more chances of increasing the productivity of their entire team and not just one employee.
5.Develop Leadership Competencies
One of the most important investments an organization can make is in its leaders. It is managers and supervisors who have to play the most significant part in employee retention. They are the best people to encourage and enable workforce learning, but only if they themselves have power skills like empathy and resilience.
However, it’s not just people in actual leadership positions who need leadership competencies. Everyone across the organization, from individual employees to C-suite executives need leadership skills to deliver on strategic initiatives and drive business goals. It’s necessary that the current as well as future leaders of the organization are offered personalized coaching so they can build their own leadership plan keeping in mind business goals, outcomes and strategies that directly impact business success.
It is upto L&D teams to offer employees the tools and technologies that provide them access to the right information, learning, content and even people who they can connect with to make the whole learning process easy.
With the help of a proper digital learning strategy that meets the needs of all employees and ensuring that it fulfils the goal of employee retention, companies can lay the foundation to business success.
Learn how Plethora can help you upskill your employees today!