Matthew Owen

Jan 13, 2022

What Does Learning And Development Look Like In The Post-Pandemic World?

Blog

A third of businesses have had to cut their learning and development (L&D) budgets due to the pandemic. But that doesn’t mean L&D has dropped in importance. In fact, it’s now more critical than ever.
Just 18% of organisations feel that their learning strategy, investment and resourcing will return to what they were prior to the first lockdown. So, it’s evident that the face of L&D will look very different post-pandemic. Here, we outline how.

The need for agility and reskilling

We’ve spoken numerous times about the  requirement for agility within the workforce, something which CIPD’s ‘Learning and skills at work’ report echoed. But reskilling and redeployment are also necessary. Up to 64% of survey respondents said they’ve reviewed changes needed in their job roles and the need to reskill, whilst 51% have looked into the impact of automation and how to redeploy.

The skills gap is a big consideration too, with Brexit and other factors causing high competition for talent and ability. Not all these capabilities can be sourced from fresh candidates, so there’s a higher reliance on internal training. In fact, 72% now feel more confident about addressing the gaps within their businesses.

As a result, it appears L&D’s future will involve a focus on soft skills like agility, along with reskilling in specific areas.

A focus on digital

Like most things during the pandemic, learning and development went virtual – and it looks like this method could be here to stay. The CIPD report also found that 70% of companies have increased their use of digital learning solutions, and 36% have boosted their investment in it too. Meanwhile, almost 80% feel they’re successfully employing their technologies, and nearly 70% are implementing innovative utilisation strategies.

So, whilst there’s been an overall reduction to L&D expenditure, businesses are seeing the value of investing in such technology. This is because it’s hugely beneficial. For example, it gives you the opportunity to help individuals and build trust, and allows employees to better support each other in their learning.

It was found that those with a more sophisticated stance on technology, such as being prepared for remote learning, and more accessible and experiential experiences, were able to create a virtuous circle, which prompted an enthusiasm for learning. Those who had to suddenly rely on webinars and elementary e-learning, however, struggled. Therefore, L&D does have a digital future, but businesses need to keep pace with this.

Support from leaders

Leader support has proven to be incredibly valuable in learning and development, so much so, that senior leaders are now viewing training with higher regard. In fact, the pandemic caused organisations to better align L&D with business priorities.

Learning environments are crucial. In our webinar, ‘What now? Building high performing leadership teams’, Leadership Consultant Pete Lowe revealed that the best course is within a business’ own culture. Leaders need to give access to existing skills and knowledge. That way, team members can become leaders themselves.

If you go ahead with external training, make sure it’s tailored to your company. As in the post-pandemic world, learning and development should work in practice, not just in theory.

Recruiting with Cast UK

When it comes to hiring, you might find a candidate who meets all your criteria but requires a little training to get them to the right level. If you’re looking for employees with the agility and learning mindset to become your future leaders, then Cast UK can help.

Whether you need candidates on a one-off basis or want to fill multiple roles, look no further than our recruitment solutions. Get in touch today on 0333 121 3345 or at hello@castuk.com, and let’s discuss how we can solve your people problems.

 

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