In our 21st Century’s business environment, it’s essential that L&D delivers to the pace & direction of the business. As the global environment and business are rapidly changing, it is important to shape a learning strategy that aligns with organizational goals and delivers learning that boosts employee performance while improving business results. This learning strategy is the blueprint for assessing the requirements of an organization’s learning framework and how this framework can drive organizational performance. Developing a comprehensive learning strategy requires a learning organization to evaluate its goals, governance, people, processes and systems that are currently in place. However only 44% of the companies state that they have an effective corporate learning strategy in place (Bersin: High impact learning organization series, 2013). Many current corporate learning leaders realize that L&D transformation is needed to deliver business results but don’t know what to change and where to start (Jane Hart, 2016).
In this article we will describe the key clusters of the corporate learning strategy (CLS) and provide you with a link to a health-check tool to review your CLS-state and define improvement areas.
Do you need a learning strategy?
Both the business environment and learning environment are rapidly changing and expected to evolve at an even faster pace in the coming years (McKinsey: Learning at the speed of business, 2016). Corporate learning is moving from push to pull; from classroom to the workplace; from delivering programs to delivering business impact. In this way you facilitate continuous learning that’s needed to enable cultural transformation, fill the talent pipeline, boost innovation and equip the workforce to perform today and tomorrow. In parallel there’s a huge call for corporate learning to be more efficient, effective and consistent. This requires a structured approach to plan, design and deliver learning: an effective corporate learning strategy. This learning strategy can enable you to review, benchmark and plan-forward in terms of: ‘Why, What, How is L&D delivering?’, ‘Who is delivering learning in your organization?’ and ‘How are you performing versus the benchmark?’ Deloitte’s 2015 Global Human Capital Trends Report highlights that the learning strategy of more mature organisations helps them to deliver business goals and transforms the way work is done.
Components of a corporate learning strategy
In parallel we conducted desk research on corporate learning strategy and corporate universities to assemble solid views and directions for a corporate learning health-check tool. In recent weeks we have successfully piloted this tool with clients and have received positive feedback and support to progress.
The result of this process is a Corporate Learning Strategy (CLS) health check tool with 6 clusters that are key component of a healthy learning organization. Each component contains 5 concrete guidelines to review, embrace and implement to further professionalize your corporate learning strategy in relation to your specific organizational context.
The 6 corporate learning strategy components are:
- Corporate learning Mission & Plan. A component that relates to the mission, strategy, learning plans & policies in your organization.
- L&D Governance & Finance. A cluster with a focus on your learning governance and which funding models you have in place.
- Learning Technology. A component to assess whether learning technologies are aligned, integrated and accessible
- Learning offer; design & delivery. A component with a focus on design & delivery strategies and management of existing L&D portfolio.
- L&D sourcing & vendor management. A cluster that relates to sourcing strategy, and how vendors are managed.
- L&D measurement & processes. A component that relates to needs analysis and which processes are in place that turn business stakes into L&D KPIs.
How fit is your Corporate Learning Strategy? Run the CLS health-check and improve your corporate learning strategy
We assume that you would like to review the fitness of your corporate learning strategy and as a result align closer to your business and operate more efficiently and effectively! We recommend that you register for our 8th September Crossknowledge webinar that will provide in-depth insight into this CLS health-check. Following that webinar you can conduct a corporate learning strategy health-check which identifies areas to ‘cure.
Can your L&D keep up with the speed and demands of the business? In the rapidly changing environment it is vital to have a ‘healthy’ corporate L&D strategy in order to align with business needs, deliver greater value for money and offer effective continuous learning. We will provide you with a CLS health-check opportunity without going into detail regarding the learning culture or learner engagement as these topics are covered in other CLI-articles and research.
- Brandon Hall – L&D: a framework for excellence 2015 whitepaper
- McKinsey quarterly: Learning at the speed of business 2016
- CEB (corporate executive board): Measuring L&D’s impact 2013 playbook
- Deloitte: Global Human Capital trends research 2015
- Towards Maturity: Embracing Change – 2016 industry report
- McKinsey: Corporate Academy research report 2016
- Bersin: Governance of High impact learning organizations whitepaper 2013
- Jane Hart: 2016 blogs and articles