Evaluating Your Corporate Training Strategy
Question: Is your organization proactive when it comes to a corporate learning strategy?
Let me share this story: We once had a client come to us with an immediate and urgent need for a specific safety training video topic. You can guess why they needed it: An accident had occurred on-site, a lawsuit ensued, and as part of the settlement, the company had to put their employees through mandatory safety training.
Similarly, we saw Starbucks handle a very public discrimination incident with company-wide training on racial bias. Industry experts estimated the brand would lose over $12 million in lost profit by shutting down for the day of training. I can tell you that investing in compliance and anti-discrimination training from HSI beforehand to prevent the event would have cost a fraction of the $12 million!
A good eLearning partner should be able to provide such urgent and immediate needs, and we helped them out. We also discussed working with them to evaluate their learning strategy to be more proactive with the idea of preventing these incidents. (You can read a case study about one of our clients who worked with us to create a proactive training culture with HSI.)
The sad truth is that most companies are reactive when it comes to training, rather than being proactive with a training strategy. Sometimes companies have no explicit training strategy, like our client above who needed that safety topic. Other times, companies have a training strategy, but it was made in a vacuum and so it does not reflect current needs and realities. Most times, it is well worthwhile to dust off that training strategy and ask some very specific questions.
To help with that, we recently published an eBook on the seven questions you should ask in order to evaluate your training strategy, based on our popular webinar. In it, we describe a step-by-step process for evaluating (and building) your corporate learning strategy. Those questions (spoiler alert!) are as follows:
- What kind of learning culture do you have?
- Who is your audience?
- What are your core competencies?
- Do you have learning paths based on the competencies?
- What do you need today, and what might you need tomorrow?
- Have you reviewed your metrics? (And what do they say?)
- What criteria are you using to evaluate content providers?
For specific details on how these questions can help you formulate a (better) corporate learning strategy, you’ll have to download the free eBook. Suffice it to say that these questions were developed over years of helping clients think through their learning strategy and find the right tools and technologies to implement those strategies.
Using these seven questions is a great starting point for overhauling your learning organization, or even just making some necessary tweaks. You might find that you are doing many things right; but chances are good that there are also several things you could be doing better.
To give you a taste, here are some ways in which these questions shape your learning programs through a focus on strategy:
- Should you start your learning initiatives by overhauling, and providing access to, a larger learning library? Or by investing in branded content and advanced tracking tools? The answer might lie in your specific type of learning culture.
- How do you find the best learning management system? There are good reasons why you should think of administrators as your “audience” along with learners themselves.
- Do you have a limited budget and limited time that can be allotted to training? Of course you do; everyone does. Developing a competency model can help you focus your training effort.
- What are your high-performers learning that others are not, and how are they doing it? You can’t tell, unless you take a long look at your metrics.
There’s a lot more, too. Just remember, 86% of best-in-class L&D teams take the time to understand what their employees need, and how they learn. Why not achieve excellence by taking stock of where you are with your corporate learning strategy? We would be happy to discuss any of these items with you and how HSI might be able to help.