Mobile Strip

Learning And Development (L&D)

What is Learning and Development?

Learning and Development, or L&D, is a systematic process of acquiring knowledge, skills, attitudes, and competencies to enhance an employee’s performance. It is a continuous process carried out by the HR department, L&D professionals, mentors, and external trainers. Its main goal is to increase productivity, improve performance, and foster creativity and teamwork. It also plays a critical role in enhancing an organization’s overall productivity and promoting curiosity and adaptability among the workforce.

What are the main modes of L&D?

Organizations adopt various L&D modes depending on their culture, workforce needs, and resource availability. However, the main modes of L&D are as follows:

  1. Instructor-led training (ILT): An instructor presents relevant content to learners. It effectively explains complex topics and facilitates direct interaction between the learners and trainers.
  2. E-Learning: In this, the learner gains knowledge through an LMS platform, online courses, or webinars. It facilitates self-paced learning, and the sessions are interactive with quizzes and assessments.
  3. On-the-Job training (OJT): In this, employees learn through hands-on experience and by participating in the actual activities. It involves job shadowing, job rotations, and apprenticeship.
  4. Blended learning: In this, multiple modes of learning like ILT, mobile learning, and e-learning are incorporated together. It provides a flexible approach and allows learners of diverse types to adapt to the process.

How to build an effective L&D strategy?

Learning is acquiring knowledge, skills, and attitudes through understanding new concepts and gaining practical abilities. In contrast, development expands an employee’s capabilities, potential, and competency through personal growth, skill-building and adopting new attitudes or perspectives.

Organizations need to consider numerous factors before crafting their L&D strategy; a few of the steps to build an effective L&D strategy are as follows:

  1. Aligning business and learning goals: The key task of an L&D executive is to develop an L&D strategy that supports professional development and build company-wide cost-saving capabilities among the employees. They should also align their strategies with the overall business goals, which most of the professionals fail at doing.
  2. Collective ownership of the business and HR leaders: With the constant change in the dynamic business world, it’s the primary responsibility of the L&D professionals to build an agile system to accommodate these changes. They should focus on the governance approach to divide the responsibilities between the business leaders and HR professionals in defining, prioritizing, and designing the systems.
  3. Assessment of skill and performance gaps of employees: Companies must constantly assess the capability and performance gaps to ensure the individuals deliver accurate and timely results. They should thus build a competency model based on the company’s goals and objectives and individual’s capabilities.
  4. Design the learning journey: Moving beyond the traditional approaches and creating a learning journey that combines various learning interventions like digital learning, on-the-job coaching, e-learning, and social learning to assist the individuals in developing new competencies and skills.
  5. Implement the strategy: Effective execution of the L&D policy that focuses on aligning the business initiatives with the organizational goals. Ongoing communication and discussions among the various stakeholders are the key to making this efficient and effective.
  6. Measure the strategy’s effectiveness: Using qualitative and quantitative data, measure the proposed strategy’s impact on employee engagement, performance, and business productivity.
  7. Analyze the results and make necessary amendments: Use employee feedback to understand the strategy better and make recommended changes to refine the strategy further.

What are the benefits of L&D?

The benefits of learning and development (L&D) for an organization are numerous. The key benefits are as follows:

  1. Talent attraction and retention: Employees seek organizations that invest in L&D initiatives in today’s world. By offering such opportunities, organizations can attract the top talent in the marketspace and invest in their professional growth and development. It’s also one of the main factors behind the retention of employees in the long term.
  2. Empowering employee growth: Human capital is the most valuable resource of an organization, but it loses its value with the passage of time. Hence, it’s essential for organizations to invest in a system that constantly sharpens the skills and competencies to make them agile and flexible to accommodate these changes. Businesses focusing on building strong L&D strategies often outperform their competitors.
  3. Cultivating value-driven culture: This initiative also plays an important role in building value-based culture and fostering a sense of community among the workforces. Millennials in particular look for purpose-driven organizations to contribute positively to society.
  4. Strengthening employer brand: Investment in L&D strategies can enhance the organization’s brand positioning, showing them as the “ideal employer of choice”. With a shrinking older employee population, it’s crucial for organizations to invest to attract and retain top talent.
  5. Fostering engagement and motivation: Lifelong learning opportunities contribute to building a highly engaged workforce who love challenging environments and strives to build a good career progression path.

What is a learning and development model?

The most widely recognized learning and development framework is the 70-20-10 model. So, according to the model,

  1. 70% On-the-job experience: Most of an individual’s learning happens from hands-on work experience, i.e., new projects and responsibilities and tight deadlines. This helps individuals acquire new skills and expertise in their work life.
  2. 20% Social interactions: Individuals learn through social collaboration with others, via mentoring and feedback systems. So, individuals receive guidance from trained professionals and learn from their expertise.
  3. 10% Formal Education: Individuals learn from workshops, seminars, and other activities, incorporating methods like online platforms and classroom-based training.

Are training and development the same as learning and development?

While learning and development (L&D) and training and development (T&D) sound similar, they have few distinctions. L&D encompasses various levels of learning and nurturing the employee’s overall skills, attitudes, and perceptions. T&D focuses on structured training activities that only improve job-specific skills.

Who requires learning and development in the organization?

Employees ranging from freshers to executive decision-makers are eligible to learn and develop new skills and competencies. Organizations can promote a culture of continuous learning by incorporating this initiative into every employee’s professional roadmap.

What are the courses available in L&D?

Numerous courses are available in the marketplace to enhance the skills and knowledge of employees. Keka Academy, one of the prominent players, offers courses on various HR functions like employee engagement, HR analytics, etc. Other key players are Coursera, Udemy, and Skillsoft.

Do companies still invest in L&D?

Yes, companies still invest in L&D. Especially, post the pandemic L&D investments have almost doubled with 76% of the workforce preferring to work in the organizations that prioritize continuous development. Top reasons for companies to invest are: Higher employee engagement, top talent retention, improved agility, and enhanced employer branding.

What is the role of HRs in L&D?

HRs play a crucial role in crafting and implementing effective L&D strategies. They collaborate with business leaders to assess the organization’s needs, identify gaps, and frame strategies that align with the business’s overall objectives. They also assist in allocating resources and budgets for various initiatives and promote a culture of continuous learning and innovation within the organization. Finally, they promote employee engagement, employee retention, and succession planning with the L&D programs.

Latest Trends in L&D

With the onset of the post-pandemic era, the L&D function has witnessed a few trends that promise a future filled with exciting possibilities:

  1. Increased focus on building cross-functional expertise to create a business partner perspective.
  2. Championing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives to improve employee retention.
  3. Enhancing individual’s data literacy by making metrics a part of every department’s daily routine.
  4. Making the managers more people-oriented and honing their leadership skills so they can assist employees in their career journey.
cookie image

By clicking “Accept", you consent to our website's use of cookies to give you the most relevant experience by remembering your preferences and repeat visits. You may visit "cookie policy” to know more about cookies we use.