Employees call for more engaging, accessible and targeted learning

According to new research, UK employees are among the most bored and disinterested in the world when it comes to workplace learning

Employees call for more engaging, accessible and targeted learning
New research by leading global skills organisation City & Guilds Group has found that UK employees are disengaged, bored and want a more bespoke approach to workplace training. More than two-thirds believe that current training content is not exciting or engaging, while 80% have trouble accessing learning and development (L&D) activities at their work. In addition, the UK is lagging behind the rest of the world in L&D, as the UK workforce is among the least likely globally to invest personal time in training. But the blame cannot all be placed with the employees, as the research has found that they are calling out for a more engaging, accessible and targeted development experience.Conducted by City & Guilds Group business Kineo, the study spoke to 500 employees and 100 employers in the UK – and a further 6,000 employees and 1200 employers across 12 other global markets: France, Sweden, Kenya, South Africa, UAE, India, Malaysia, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, USA, and Argentina.While 80% of British employees say that their organisation has taken steps to improve their skillset and overall employability over the past year, only 13% of employees would rate the last year's L&D opportunities as very effective and just one-fifth (21%) feel very well equipped to do their job to the best possible standard. UK employees are finding their current L&D uninteresting, with more than two-thirds (69%) saying training content is not always exciting or engaging – this is significantly higher than the global average of 59%.

Employers need to do better with L&D, say staff

Rather than undertake personal L&D, UK employees are calling on their employers to provide a much more curated and tailored approach to training to better equip them with the skills needed for the future. More engaging (37%), personalised (35%) and better quality (29%) content – as well as shorter, micro-style learning (23%) – are cited as the most effective methods. In addition, they would like to see more training that helps them to develop new skills and abilities.John Yates, group director, corporate learning at City & Guilds Group, comments, “The nature of work is evolving rapidly and, consequently, learning and development has never been more important. While employers are making concerted efforts to upskill their workforce for the future, it’s concerning that current training may not be hitting the mark. Our findings clearly show that employees in the UK are crying out for new ways to learn and train, that truly cater to their individual interests and career paths."Many employers in the UK have the budget (81%) and resource (82%) to invest in staff training, but it needs to be far more accessible. A worrying 80% of UK employees cite some sort of trouble accessing L&D activity in their workplace, with lack of time being the most significant barrier (24%).Yates continues, “Even if budgets and strategy for learning and development are in place, businesses won’t see a real return on investment until training and learning are fully accessible to all. Employers need to deliver training in a way that makes it easier for employees to learn on their own terms, fitting around their schedules by harnessing technologies that enable a ‘Netflix’-style experience of L&D. Only by listening to the expectations of their workforce, and taking inspiration from global counterparts to develop an approach to learning and development that is both accessible and inspiring, can employers prevent this significant investment from going to waste.”

An organisation doing it right

Skincare brand Dermalogica places professional education at the heart of its organisation. Committed to helping skin therapists and employees achieve their professional goals, Dermalogica has more than 90 training centres and around 1,000 partnership colleges around the world.Candice Gardner, education manager of digital and content at Dermalogica says, “There is a constant battle between being broad enough to reach as many people as possible with education, and yet making sure learning is personalised enough to be effective. You aren’t going to get it right every time, but successful educational experiences come down to nailing the human connection – authentic trainers delivering content that has real personal relevance or worth to the individual. We believe learning must be accessible and trackable so people can see where the value is and how it will impact personal, professional and business growth. By keeping learning focused and responsive to the needs and goals of individuals, we are able to keep people engaged for the long haul."A learner from Dermalogica adds, “What’s kept me motivated is knowing that it’s personal. Of course, you know that you are helping the business by developing the skills to deliver specific treatments, but when you feel like it’s an investment for you, that’s what makes you want to keep learning. We all have bigger goals.”The City & Guilds Group is a world leader in skills development, with 140 years’ unrivalled experience. Working in over 100 countries around the world, our purpose is to enable people, organisations and economies to develop their skills for growth. For more information about the City & Guilds Group visit: www.cityandguildsgroup.comSubscribe to Relocate Extra, our monthly newsletter, to get all the latest international assignments and global mobility news.
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