Learning And Development

The Most Comprehensive Learning and Development Guide

Before conducting a training need analysis, make sure to compare it against the following checklist:

What is Training Need Analysis?

Second-guessing the effectiveness of training programs is easy. This is why it is critical for organizations to calculate the ROI of their training programs.

The ability to develop and enhance employee knowledge using L&D programs benefits organizations in two key areas:

The skills gap analysis model is a type of tool that is used to understand the gap between the actual skill state and a future goal state. This tool helps to identify the skills that an employee may be lacking to perform certain tasks/jobs effectively in the near future. There are numerous ways in which HR personnel can address the skills gap within the organization, such as upskilling, reskilling, succession planning, and so on. Understanding the skills gap has become increasingly essential as, according to the World Economic Forum, by 2022, no less than 54% of all workers will need to update or replace their competencies.

At this point, it makes sense to understand the major challenges that plague learning and development programs and how organizations can address each challenge. But first, let's look at what the data tells us. According to research by the Harvard Business Review,

Is there a recipe for success for creating a learning and development strategy?

In this section, we will talk about what it takes to create a holistic learning and development strategy framework.

The role of Learning and Development in HR is now more critical than ever. The HR manager's primary responsibility is no longer restricted to scouting for talent and hiring the right people. They have to focus on

Let's start with the basics and understand what Learning & Development is. Quite simply, L&D refer to the process of improving an employee's skill, knowledge, and competency. The term comprises two components:

Learning and Development (L&D) is an integral part of Human Resource management. In fact, organizations are leveraging L&D programs to drive agility and performance among their employees.

They are also fostering a learning culture to empower employees to "take charge" and lead with knowledge, skills, and capabilities going forward in 2022. In this in-depth guide, we will cover all the bases about everything L&D-related—from what is L&D to effective strategies and checklists that HR professionals can readily embrace. Let's jump right in.

iMocha Hiring Trends Report 2022

Want to download the entire guide? We got you!

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
S. No. Priorities
1 Figure out what the company wants to accomplish.
2 Understand the history of training within the organization.
3 Zero down on the specific needs that will be addressed by the training.
4 Identify if there have been any latest process/procedure changes.
5 Think about the kind of resources that are available for training.
6 Understand who needs to be trained.
7 Identify who will serve as the subject matter experts.
8 Analyze which companies can provide the training materials.
9 Review the Job Descriptions and Organization Charts.

For a more in-depth checklist, refer to the following:

Step 1: Identify the main goals of the new training program.

The L&D team should comprise Subject Matter Experts and learning strategists. This step includes:

  • Identifying the skills and knowledge required by the employee to reach the KPI targets and how the KPIs can be measured
  • Categorizing the challenges that affect the KPI scores and prioritizing tasks to address the same
  • Validating the project scope and understanding the key learning objectives, competency levels, and possible delivery methods

Step 2: Conduct an organizational analysis.

If the project requires a complete overhaul of the training program, its organizational impact needs to be understood. To validate the business needs, ask the following questions:

  • What is the business problem the company is trying to solve?
  • What are the organization's unique goals for the training program?
  • Why is a training program instrumental in solving the business problem?
  • How well is the organization's experience with respect to training and development?

Step 3: Conduct a people/trainee analysis.

This step requires creating a profile of the trainees in relation to key areas such as industry experience, communication skills, etc. The inputs can come in from the recruitment team. Real samples of calls, emails, chats, etc. can be examined to analyze the trainees' strengths and weaknesses. This can be done by answering the following important questions:

  • Who is the ideal target audience for the training program?
  • What is the trainee' existing knowledge level on the subject at-hand?
  • What kind of learning styles do the trainees prefer?
  • What is the kind of experience that the trainees have with training programs?
  • What do the end-goals for the trainees look like?

Step 4: Conduct a task analysis.

This step involves understanding the job/task at hand. Additionally, the main duties and skill levels required for the training program need to be identified. To do this, Subject Matter Experts, high-performing employees, supervisors, and managers in charge can be interviewed.

Start by asking the following questions:

  • What key task is this training targeting?
  • What kind of sequential steps need to be performed?
  • How often should the training be performed?
  • What training is already available?
  • Will you need to observe the employees performing these tasks to get more data?
  • Can the tasks identified be embedded into the learning program?
  • Will there be any changes to the policies, procedures, or equipment due to the training program?

Step 5: Conduct a performance analysis.

This analysis is important to setting the right expectations and using accurate metrics to assess program success. Ask the following questions to create an in-depth analysis:

  • How will the training program improve performance?
  • How will it improve the trainee' performance, behavior, etc.?
  • Can the training by itself achieve the performance expectations?
  • How will you measure performance change?
  • What are the performance pain-points?

Step 6: Conduct a content analysis.

One of the most integral aspects of Training Need Analysis is content analysis. Often done in collaboration with Subject Matter Experts, content analysis can be aced by asking the following questions:

  • What are the training's learning objectives and outcomes?
  • What kind of activities, resources, external references, assessment, and evaluation processes will be required to complete the training?
  • Where will the information come from? Do you have access to existing manuals, documents, guides, etc.?
  • What level of competency do the learners exhibit?
  • Do the learners need to complete certain tasks in a specific manner once the training is complete?
  • Do the learners need to master the task or have a basic knowledge of the same?
  • Do you have enough content to ensure that each training objective is met?
  • Who will the main Subject Matter Expert be?
  • Who will be the main reviewer and approver?
  • Does the course material involve tasks for different learning styles, group work, problem-solving, peer evaluation, and real-time feedback?
  • Is the course structure in a proper flow? Does it elicit a good level of understanding and engagement from the learners?
  • Is the material clearly and realistically connected to the course objectives?
  • Is the course content relevant and appropriate for the background, abilities, and experience of the learners?

Based on the data collected and by studying the existing course material, a design document including the relevant training objectives can be created. This can be used as the foundation for creating the new training course material.

Step 7: Conduct a cost-benefit analysis.

This step involves being able to demonstrate the return on investment of the learning and development initiative. To do this, factor in all the key metrics and KPIs that can drive the ROI. Also account for the costs of development, delivery, assessment, metric reporting, and so on.

Bringing it All Together

Evidently, there is a significant shift in the way companies are driving L&D programs. They are increasingly treating "learning" as a strategic asset. Moreover, to recruit high-quality talent, organizations are driving engaging, memorable, and "employee-obsessed" programs.

Contrary to popular opinion, learning and development programs are not just beneficial for the employee; they also hold great value for the organization. This includes higher customer satisfaction, increased revenues, and a significantly happier employee base. That said, for organizations to leverage L&D as a competitive advantage, there needs to be a shift in the organization's HR and learning culture. It is only with continuous learning can enterprises hope to innovate with a future-ready workforce at the helm.

Finally, at the core of value-driven organizations is an ever-evolving, strategic, and skilled workforce—one that's powered by learning-centric culture and training-led design thinking.

Quite simply, Training Needs Analysis (TNA) refers to a systematic process of figuring out the kind of training required to identify new skills, knowledge, and attitude needed by employees to boost performance.

Types of Training Need Analysis

When it comes to Training Need Analysis, you need to understand it's components first. Here are some of the analysis types:


  • Organizational analysis: It includes an analysis of the business needs and the organization's strategies, goals, and objectives. The end goal is to understand why a training program can solve specific business problems.
  • Person analysis: It includes an analysis of the potential participants and instructors involved in the process. The end goal is to understand who will receive the training.
  • Work analysis: It includes an analysis of the tasks/work being performed. The end goal is to understand the primary duties and skill level required.
  • Performance analysis: It includes an analysis of the employees' performance and understanding whether or not there is a performance gap.
  • Content analysis: It includes an analysis of documents, laws, manuals, and procedures that are used on the job. The end goal is to ensure that the content of the training does not conflict with the job requirements.
  • Training suitability analysis: It includes an analysis of whether the training is the ideal solution to the problem at hand.
  • Cost-Benefit analysis: It includes an analysis of the return on investment (ROI) of the training.

Training Needs Analysis process flow

Wondering what the training need analysis process flow looks like? Keep going. First, it is important to know that assessments can be done at any time—post hiring, during performance reviews, during career development plans, or even while succession planning. In other words, any change that the organization makes that can directly impact the employees' job will require an assessment. As a thumb rule, organizations should perform the assessments periodically to gather the training requirements of the organization, gauge the employees' knowledge and skills, and analyze the training program's effectiveness.

Step 1: Identify the business requirement.

This is the first step to a successful training program and an integral part of succession planning. The idea is to focus on training areas that are important for employees to achieve their organization's goals, make optimum use of the training cost, and encourage employees to move ahead in their career development path.

The key questions to ask here are: Why is the enterprise conducting a training needs assessment? In some cases, instead of conducting training, other solutions may help solve business issues such as goal clarification, realignment of a department, or employee engagement.

Step 2: Perform a gap analysis.

In this phase, the current state of the employee's performance and skills is assessed and compared to the desired level to understand the "gap". A gap analysis can be conducted by gathering data via varying methods:

  • HR records: These include useful information such as job descriptions, performance evaluations, core competencies, exit interviews, etc.
  • One-on-one interviews: One-on-one interviews can be conducted with employees, managers, and customers.
  • Focus groups: In this method, multiple individuals can be questioned about their training needs and can then brainstorm ideas together. Focus groups can be held department-wise for ease.
  • Surveys, questionnaires and self-assessments: Surveys can be sent in writing, electronically, or by phone.

Step 3: Analyze the training options.

The gap analysis conducted in the previous step will lend a list of useful training options and needs. This list can be used against the organizational goals to understand whether training is a viable option or not.

  • Solution to a problem: Understand whether training can solve specific problems. For instance, let's say an employee has a performance problem that stems from improper training. The organization can think of ways to deliver proper additional on-the-job training and boost employee performance.
  • Cost: When understanding whether training is viable or not, cost is a significant factor. The amount of investment required can be calculated by using the following formula:

  • Return on investment: Return on investment (ROI) demonstrates the value of expenditures related to the training and development. It also demonstrates how long it will take for the organization to see a positive return on the investment made.
  • Legal compliance: The organization should weigh in the legal needs—whether the training needs are required legally or whether they are essential to ensuring that the employees' licenses or certifications are maintained.
  • Time: Organizations should also factor in the time that will be required to build capacity within the organization. This is about whether it will affect the operational needs or whether they may want to outsource talent from outside the organization to fill in the skills gaps. For instance, if engaging in succession planning, they can conduct the training as it is in the form of long-term commitment to skill-building.
  • Remaining competitive: Understand whether the training can help provide a competitive edge by providing employees with the required knowledge/skills to deliver a stellar customer experience.

Once the training needs as well as options have been assessed, the HR professional can map out a list of training priorities for the employees, the departments, and the company on the whole.

Step 4: Report the training needs and endorse the right training plans.

The next logical step is to report findings from the training needs assessment. Based on the data, recommendations can be made for short and long-term training plans and budgets. Remember to prioritize from the training options list. Also, ensure that the report accurately and succinctly summarizes why and how the assessment will be completed. Mention the methods used as well as the key people involved. Finally, provide a timeline within which the training should be complete. Important questions to ask at this stage include:

  • Why is the training being conducted and whether it should continue to be offered?
  • Will the training be conducted in-house or externally?
  • Should the organization bring the trainer to the employees or send the employees to an off-site location?
  • Does the organization have the required subject matter experts within the HR department or other departments to conduct the training?
  • Can the training be conducted virtually?
  • What kind of learning styles do the learners prefer?

Why is it important to calculate the ROI of your program?

You could have the best training program in the world, but if you are not measuring its effectiveness, you are essentially shooting blind. According to research, despite organizations spending billions of dollars in learning and development, they are failing to engage people, and this "disengagement" is costing the US economy up to $550 billion in lost productivity each year. Another report titled "State of Learning" claims that in order to determine the impact of leadership development programs, the top-two metrics that L&D leaders look at are - employee engagement (48.8%) and retention/attrition of top performers (48.6%). Surprisingly, ROI was one of the bottom metrics used by L&D leaders to demonstrate the impact of training programs on the broader enterprise — a bad sign. 

Evaluating the effectiveness of training programs is critical. Here's why:

  • It validates the efforts of the L&D practitioners to the employees as well as the management.
  • It helps build a highly-engaged and productive workforce, which can lead to higher levels of customer satisfaction, profit, and shareholder returns.
  • It promotes a culture of valuable learning and lasting engagement among employees as they start experiencing the benefits of the learning and development program.
  • It accurately helps identify when the status quo is not working and what needs to change.
  • It demonstrates greater value for the training programs, helping acquire buy-in from management.
  • It empowers organizations with a thorough understanding of the following key questions that are central to driving growth and development:

- Are the learning programs meeting the organizational objectives?

- What kind of topics are most valuable to the learners?

- Are the trainers leveraging the right mix of delivery methods?

- Are the learners engaged and applying the content in their respective roles?

- Are the learning programs able to demonstrate tangible benefits (read: higher productivity, reduced errors, etc.) for every dollar invested?

Moving on, let's understand how you can measure your training program's effectiveness.

A step-by-step process for measuring the effectiveness of training programs

Step 1: Calculate your ROI.

The first step involves gathering accurate and quantitative information to justify the cost of your training programs. To calculate the ROI, start by asking yourself the following questions:

- Does your enterprise have the required systems in place to conduct the training and gather real-time data?

- Can the data be mined and analyzed accurately?

- What are the expectations of the stakeholders when looking for an ROI study?

- Do you need to consult with the executive sponsors to manage their expectations?

- Is self-reported data (read: information from surveys and interviews) a part of the company's culture?

Once you have the answers to these questions, you can define how much you have spent on L&D. Important factors to consider include fees for speakers (digital or in-person), travel and lodging, meal costs, etc. You can also look at the lost productivity time as well as the cost of technology.

Step 2: Identify the key metrics that you want to measure.

The next step is to identify the right mix of metrics to understand whether or not the L&D program is effective. Some common metrics that companies use include:

You can weigh the performance against industry benchmarks or your own goals to gauge the efficacy. For instance, say your brand wants to enhance customer service. Your training can drive best-practice customer-engagement techniques. In terms of the metrics, your organization can measure "hard" metrics such as sales or conversion rates. It is critical that you select the right factors to measure, both before and after the training. Here's the formula for calculating ROI:

Step 3: As a thumb rule, use multiple data points over a period of time.

An impactful and accurate ROI analysis should:

  • Include several strategies for understanding the effects of training.
  • Compare and capture data from multiple touchpoints, such as survey responses (over a period of time).
  • Build ROI into a course evaluation process to get continuous feedback on the course's effectiveness and pivot as required.

The end goal here is to understand:‍

  • Whether the learners find the training favorable, engaging, and relevant to their job roles.
  • Whether the learners apply the learned skills on the job effectively and with ease.

Step 4: Don't leave the non-numerical data hanging in the air.

For L&D programs, qualitative information is as important as quantitative information (read: hard data), especially when presenting a business case to key stakeholders. This step incorporates understanding the level of "learning" that is being imparted to the participants, which includes three elements:

  • Intended knowledge: The participants know that they can do the task/job at hand.
  • Skills: The participants have the requisite skills to do the task/job at hand.
  • Attitude, confidence, and commitment: The participants believe that the learned skill will help them further on the job.

After all, ROI is not just a number. Qualitative feedback and comments also need to be factored in to gather unique insights that can be useful for training managers. So make sure to identify the non-numerical aspects related to the program, such as interviews or surveys. Feedback is central to building a robust and value-driven L&D program.

In addition to the points mentioned above, here are a few best practices to keep in mind:

  • Examine the retention, progression, and turnover rates for insights into program efficacy.
  • Work with business leaders to incorporate skills and training-related questions within exit surveys, focus groups, post-training surveys, manager surveys, and client surveys.
  • Break down the L&D benefits into two buckets: tangible benefits, such as increased productivity and revenue performance, and intangible benefits, such as increased employee engagement and retention.

In a recent Gartner survey, 60% of HR executives reported that their CEOs wanted to ensure employees have the skills needed for the future. When it comes to taking inspiration for killer L&D strategies, the FAANG group (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Google) has been a benchmark for high-performing enterprises. In this section, we will look at some of the most successful L&D strategies embraced by these giants to revisit their hiring strategies and laser-focus on the underlying skill sets.

A. Facebook:

Facebook's L&D program, "Managing Unconscious Bias," is multi-dimensional in approach and strives to offer personalized experiences for individual learning. The aim of this program is to train employees to acknowledge workplace bias and lower its negative effects.

Image Source

Moreover, the brand's signature program, "Bootcamp," is wildly popular. It is a six-week introduction to Facebook that all engineers must go through. The program helps them decide how the engineers will contribute to Facebook. Plus, it aids in mentorship, experimentation, and team building, providing new hires access to an internal network, and driving unity. Apart from this, the brand has two other L&D-friendly programs:

  • Facebook's Engage Coaching Program: This program pairs new managers with an executive coach. One-on-one sessions are encouraged where the coach helps new managers develop people management skills.
  • Facebook's FLiP (Facebook Leadership in Practice): A peer-to-peer program, the end goal here is for leaders to receive feedback and coaching from peers and executives. Moreover, people can access helpful insights around leadership best practices, team-building exercises, etc.

There are numerous L&D programs that Facebook drives. All employees have to do is enroll in online communities using Facebook Workplace and connect with the desired training:

Image Source

Image Source

B. Apple:

Apple's L&D programs encourage employees to self-learn, which occurs in-house, year-round. The brand leverages full-time academic staff to design and teach courses. Employees can sign up for customized courses based on their job role and background on an exclusive internal website.

The brand's "Lead to Succeed program" is an excellent example of L&D done right. The main objective of this program is to help employees understand the core business values and gauge how these values are aligned with the business strategy. The program also aims at developing skills that can support future business growth. Over 300 senior managers have completed the program to date. Employees also get access to a Steve-Jobs-inspired course titled "The Best Things," which motivates employees to surround themselves with the best things, like talented peers and high-quality materials.

C. Amazon:

Amazon's "Pivot" training program, an integral part of the performance improvement plan (PIP), is an interesting case in point. The program aims at helping employees who are in danger of getting fired. Subject matter experts—also called Career Ambassadors—provide guidance and support to underperforming employees. The program offers the following options to employees:

  1. They improve their performance
  2. They voluntarily leave Amazon with severance
  3. They appeal their manager's decision to place them in Pivot

The brand's HR managers claim that "Pivot is the company's way of coaching and enforcing changes in behavior, a 'necessity' that ensures better work performance." Other interesting L&D programs by the brand include:

  • Amazon Technical Academy equips employees to learn the skills required to transition into software engineering. The program leverages project-based learning to ensure trainees understand how they'll apply these skills in practice.
Image Source

The AWS re/Start program offers a free, full-time, 12-week skills development program that prepares individuals with little or no technology experience to pursue entry-level cloud computing positions and industry-recognized AWS Certification.

Image Source
  • Machine Learning University (MLU) provides anybody, anywhere, at any time, access to the same machine learning courses used to train Amazon's own developers on machine learning. This program comprises a six-week module, which only requires a half/full day of participation each week. During this time, Machine Learning scientists help learners to develop the skills needed to progress.
Image Source

D. Netflix:

Not a lot is publicly known about Netflix's L&D program. However, in 2009, the brand shared a 126-slide presentation titled Netflix Culture: Freedom & Responsibility.

Image Source

The key takeaways from the presentation include:

  • "You demonstrate consistently strong performance so colleagues can rely upon you."
  • "You learn rapidly and eagerly."
  • "Avoid top-down decision making."
  • "We support self-improvement."

The brand drives a collaborative learning style to encourage new hires to settle in quickly. It allows new starters to meet senior management, CEO Reed Hastings, and a dedicated mentor from the very beginning.

E. Google:

Image Source

At Google, 80% of all tracked training is run through an employee-to-employee network called "g2g" (Googler-to-Googler). This volunteer teaching network comprises 6,000+ Google employees who help their peers learn and grow by teaching courses, providing 1:1 mentoring, and designing learning materials. The end goal is to offer first-hand knowledge across fields, from employees to employees. This program is extremely successful as it:

  • Promotes a culture that values learning, knowledge-sharing, and curiosity—which leads to better business outcomes according to research.

Image Source

  • Positions the organization for future needed skill shifts.
  • Primes employees to think and act more like owners when it comes to their own development needs.

There are three strategies that Google uses to make this program successful: One, it is driven by strong leadership sponsorship. Two, the brand effectively reinforces learning as one of its core values at every stage of employee development. Three, it reinforces and ensures that learning is a part of every employee's repertoire from day one.

1. It helps them stay ahead of the curve: 

As organizations focus on developing their "brand" and creating a good impression, L&D takes center stage. As per data by the Universum and the DHI Group, 68% of the world's most attractive employers already have an employer branding strategy in place and believe that their employer value proposition is clearly linked to their HR/talent development strategy. Needless to say, brands that demonstrate their L&D offerings across the board will emerge as the front-runners in the potential hire's eyes.

To better understand how a robust L&D program can serve as a firm's competitive advantage, let's look at a real-life case study.

Problems faced:

 Pepper UK is a part of the Pepper Group, a diversified global consumer finance business. The firm is regulated by Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and is required to be in compliance at all times. When the pandemic hit in 2020, this became a herculean task. Other challenges that the firm faced included:

  • Transitioning employees to a remote style of working in a compliant way that met the requirements of the regulators.
  • Getting colleagues up-to-speed quickly with new mortgage payment holiday requirements and delivering a robust process to support vulnerable customers simultaneously.
  • Managing the exponential increase in customer calls and inquiries following the announcement of the payment holiday initiative.
  • Helping employees who were moving from support functions into operations to support the volume of work.
  • Ensuring that the employees felt connected.
  • Tackling issues relating to IT logistics.
  • Ensuring employee well-being at all times.

Considering that the group had a well-established L&D team, system, and processes in place, it benefited in the following areas:

  • It had an intensive induction program already in place to help experienced, high-caliber individuals with the skillset essential for operating within the Pepper enterprise.
  • It had a customized apprenticeship program for employees who joined the brand with high potential but low experience.
  • It routinely rolled out annual training plans for all employees and highlighted benefits such as certification and accreditation.
  • It had a robust system called the "Pepper Success Learning Management System," established in 2018 to support ongoing self-development.
  • It periodically engaged subject-matter experts who helped deliver "on the floor" training for new recruits and employees with capability gaps.

With such a robust system in place, Pepper took its L&D program to the next level by focusing on employee well-being when its competitors were struggling with everyday operational issues. It launched a new employee well-being program called the "PES People Matter program," which was conceived, designed, tested, and launched in just three weeks to support employees in Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Spain, and the UK. The program also won an award for innovation at the Association for Business Psychology's Workforce Experience Awards 2020. The program was clearly aligned to three key themes - well-being, connections, and leadership. It comprised of these key features:

  • People Matter Wellbeing Hub, which acted as a one-stop shop for news and information relating to an employee's physical and mental well-being.
  • Weekly Pulse Survey, which gave employees a voice and provided insights to help managers make improvements.
  • Weekly mental health online check-ins, which assessed employees' mental well-being and provided them with targeted support in real-time.

The key learnings learned from this initiative include:

  • Communication is key: Driving communication between the business and HR teams turned out to be a game-changer as it increased employee engagement and impact.
  • Trust, transparency, and openness: Through its L&D well-being program, the brand was able to foster an environment of trust and transparency. Employees felt appreciated by the brand, and employees responded by demonstrating greater loyalty.

The results?

The brand claims, "In terms of outcomes, our employee engagement (Office Vibe) score has steadily increased, as has our Glassdoor score." Naturally, this initiative doubles as a competitive edge for the company in today's cut-throat business landscape.

2. It helps attract better talent: 

For high-performing companies, the word employee has become synonymous with talent, and rightly so. However, in order to recruit talented employees, organizations must have a systematic and employee-centric L&D program in place. Organizations that commit to their employee's personal and professional development can benefit in numerous areas, such as:

  • Access to a highly-engaged and motivated millennial workforce: Research claims that 59% of millennials want opportunities to learn and grow when applying for a job.

  • The ability to portray the organization as "forward-thinking": By prioritizing L&D efforts, organizations can successfully demonstrate to candidates that they believe in investing in the "future." This means that the employees will have greater chances to climb the career ladder and learn handy, in-demand skills - an advantage that can help retain the millennial base. Millennials embrace a growth mindset today and appreciate organizations that value learning above all else.

Here are the top 5 benefits of conducting a skills gap analysis on a regular basis - 

  1. It provides insights into the current skills state of the workforce. Managers can identify which employees have the most knowledge and which ones are suffering from a skills gap.
  2. It empowers the HR team to target the right training assets based on the data collected, leading to the optimal use of training resources.
  3. It boosts employees' learning and development as well as productivity as they acquire new skills and competencies required to perform their future roles.
  4. It enables the HR team to build a strategic workforce comprising the right talent and the right skills in the right place. In other words, it improves recruitment efforts.
  5. It provides a competitive advantage as the organization truly understands and appreciates its workforce's strengths and weaknesses. This leads to better planning and optimized organizational performance.

How to Conduct a Skill Gaps Analysis in the Workplace

Wondering how to conduct a skills gap analysis? 

Identifying the skills gap in the workplace takes plenty of effort, experience, and, well, skill.

Step 1: Plan, plan, and plan some more.

A skills gap analysis can be performed on two levels. Here's an overview of the skills gap analysis methods for an individual/team:

The HR team should:

  • Conduct meetings with managers to explain the process.
  • Hire external consultants (if needed) to conduct a skills gap analysis.

Step 2: Identify the critical skills required.

One of the main goals is to identify whether the skills gap is occurring due to unrealistic expectations or if there is an actual need for new capabilities and skills. This can be understood by answering one key question:

What skills do the company value and need within the next five years?

Consider the following best practices to understand the list of critical skills required:

  • ‍Think about the company's business objectives, values, and job descriptions.
  • Survey team members to understand what skills they might be lacking.
  • Leverage the insights collected to list and prioritize the top critical skills needed.

Step 3: Measure the existing skills.

There are numerous ways to measure existing skills. This can be done by driving surveys, employee interviews, and feedback sessions related to performance. A skills management software can be leveraged to get accurate and quick results on a skills gap analysis. To close the skills gap, consider training or rehiring.

Step 4: Act on the data collected.

Depending on the skills gap identified, employees can be rehired or trained. Use the following approaches and formats to train employees:

  • Workshops, seminars, and training sessions
  • Subscriptions, online courses, and digital training material
  • Voluntary peer-to-peer mentorship programs
  • Events and conferences driven by senior management
  • Certification program to drive engagement and employee loyalty

RHP Use-Case: An Example of a Skills Gap Analysis Done Well

RHP is a not-for-profit housing association based out of West London. The organization aims to provide housing to people who cannot afford to live locally.

Key challenges: 

To achieve the company's five-year strategic goals, it needed to:

  • Develop a more consistent leadership capability.
  • Develop a stronger pipeline for future managers.

Proposed solution: 

To support its Learning and Development program, the organization identified the skills gap within its operational model. By analyzing the internal and external sources, such as exit interviews and talent reviews, it realized the importance of emotional intelligence and empathy as fundamental skills to be future-ready. The organization also looked at employee engagement surveys and follow-up interviews with managers and employers to get under the skin of the data. Here's the glaring gap that the brand identified:

There was an absence of a consistent coaching culture. People were leaving because they did not know how to "progress internally."

Strategies applied:

  • It developed an in-house "Luminous" leadership program for aspiring managers, senior leaders, etc. The learners had access to topics such as high-performing teams, money management, decision-making, and problem-solving, to name a few.
  • The program aimed to bring learning to "life" by way of memorable formats, including Luminous Lunches, book clubs, external speaker programs, escape rooms for problem-solving, etc.
  • In the classroom-based learning format, it delivered bite-size sessions and laid emphasis on activities to follow up and embed the learning.

The key learnings for L&D practitioners include:

  • Learning can be creative: By using a creatively-powered mixed delivery approach (think: workshops, podcasts, book clubs, problem-solving games, etc.), the brand brought learning to life (quite literally) and made it engaging.
  • Follow the "little and often" mantra: To ensure that managers had time to learn, the company reduced the length of the sessions by providing bite-sized chunks with frequent follow-ups for memory retention.
  • Embrace a collaborative learning style: The organizations leveraged external and internal partners—from the communications team to the external subject-matter experts—to create impactful learning content.

The results: 

  • A shift in coaching skills: The program witnessed increased employee satisfaction with coaching from managers, as demonstrated by employee surveys.
  • Improved customer satisfaction: The program improved RHP's Trust Pilot reviews and scores, reduced call drop-off rates, and improved the process of handling complaints.
  • Increased employee engagement: The employee engagement scores increased from 85% to 94% over a 12-month period.
  • Employee progression: The program assisted aspiring leaders in moving on to management roles and opened up opportunities for career conversations within the organization. Within a 12-month period, four employees progressed to a higher role as a result of the program.

  • Around 75% of 1,500 managers surveyed from across 50 organizations were dissatisfied with their company's Learning & Development (L&D) function.
  • 70% of employees reported that they do not have mastery of the skills needed to do their jobs.
  • Only 12% of employees were seen applying new skills learned in L&D programs to their jobs.

So where are companies going wrong? Here are the four possible areas:

  1. Training at the wrong time: Companies often undertake L&D initiatives when their employees are already overburdened with work or have other commitments that require their attention. If enterprises chart out L&D programs in which employees have to have time or interest to learn, the entire initiative will fail.

    Solution: The L&D program should empower the employee with the freedom, time, and flexibility to learn at their own pace as well as convenience.
  2. Training for the wrong things: According to German psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus, if new information that is taught is not applied, the learner will forget about 75% of it after just six days. In other words, the program should find ways to incorporate the new learnings into the employee's daily work to drive better knowledge retention.

    Solution: This can be done by embracing the lean learning method where:
    A. The learner learns about the core of what they need to learn.
    B. Then, they apply the learning to real-world situations immediately.
    C. They receive immediate feedback and refine their understanding.
    D. The learning cycle gets repeated.
  3. Training without a learning ecosystem in place: Enterprises still focus primarily on in-person classroom teaching. This kind of unidimensional teaching will no longer fly in today's digitally-savvy world. Employees demand a comprehensive blend of learning formats at their fingertips, available via multichannel options—thus, giving birth to the need for a broader learning ecosystem.

    Solution: Organizations should evolve their learning ecosystems to encompass a wide variety of learning formats such as online courses, classroom training, mobile learning, expert sessions, internships, etc. For example, HDFC Life leverages gamification to enrich the learning experience of its employees for key areas such as competency and functional training. Additionally, Infosys has developed a gamified platform, "Accelerate," to ensure that every employee actively contributes towards organizational goals by opening up opportunities for short-duration projects.
  4. Training is seen as a "cost": Enterprises that view L&D with a "cost" mindset will always look for short-term gains—a big mistake. The learning and development process is an ongoing exercise that is aimed at benefiting the employees at regular intervals.

    Solution: Enterprises need to view training as a mid to long-term investment and not a one-time overhead cost. It is important to understand that the learners will not start to demonstrate the benefits immediately; it will occur over a period of time.

Skill gaps disrupting your organization's growth? iMocha can help. Start your free trial now!

Standard Chartered Use Case: Preparing Employees to be Future-Ready

In this section, we will dive deep to understand the main L&D-related challenges Standard Chartered faced and how the bank tackled the same.

Problems faced:

  • Technological changes: Advancements in emerging technologies such as automation, blockchain technologies, cloud-based platforms, artificial intelligence, and data processing was creating operational issues for the bank.
  • Changing user needs: The enterprises was dealing with increased demands from clients for personalization, 24/7 access, and an improved customer experience.
  • Faltering productivity: The bank was unable to keep up and improve on competitiveness as well as productivity.
  • Shift in skills: The bank realized a greater need for a shift in the skills mix. In simpler words, there was greater demand for data and technology-related roles over the next five years.

Proposed solution: To enable the effective reskilling and upskilling of its existing workforce instead of relying exclusively on hiring new talent to meet the strategic priorities and business objectives.

Tracking progress of you L&D initiatives can be challenging! Not anymore, as iMocha's skill intelligence is here for you! Start your free demo now!

Strategies applied and lessons learned:

  • Data-driven approach: To understand the scale of the challenge and the need for critical skills, the brand drew on a blend of external insights, internal interviews with 30 senior leaders, and workshops. This also helped them understand the top-ten skills to focus on and provided a clear view of the "future" roles (roles in-demand) and "sunset" roles (roles where fewer people will be needed) over the next five years. The brand then put together a learning infrastructure to support people to reskill, redeploy as needed, and pilot an end-to-end reskilling and redeployment pathway approach for the initial five "future" roles.
  • Experiential learning: The bank implemented a digital learner experience platform, "diSCover Lab," in Singapore to make high-quality content more accessible, boost job readiness, career prospects, and future competitiveness of the Singapore workforce. In addition, the aim was to encourage a learning and growth-centric mindset among employees by:

     - Launching a 30-day challenge competition to drive adoption and build familiarity.

     - Leveraging its Global Learning Week, which brought together senior speakers both internally and externally, to highlight and discuss the importance of learning with colleagues. Through the diSCover Lab, the bank aims to train and upskill 8,000 employees in Singapore by 2022. The diSCover Lab provides a flexible learning environment and embraces a "hybrid" approach of virtual and face-to-face training. Think of diSCover as the bank's "Netflix of Learning," where employees can access a multitude of bite-sized learning modules and curriculum, from blockchain to data, to Artificial Intelligence, and personal development. The platform is personalized, career-focused, fun, engaging, and experiential in nature.

The results?

  • 82% of colleagues registered on diSCover, and an average of 25% actively used diSCover every month.
  • The overall volume of personal development learning increased by 16% in 2020, despite a complete halt to all classroom courses owing to the pandemic.
  • The future skills academies delivered 47% of all personal development learning in 2020.
  • Quarterly learning hours via these academies more than doubled in Q4 2020.

Important tips to remember when creating an interactive learning platform:

  • Embrace an end-to-end approach that supports colleagues from reskilling to redeployment.
  • Keep the employee experience and needs at the forefront of every initiative.
  • Ensure that the learning is fun, engaging, experiential, and tech-driven.
  • Remember that learning technology is an enabler and not the primary focus of the L&D program.
Unable to engage your workforce with your L&D programs? Make Talent Development fun and simple with iMocha's interactive skill assessments! Get your free trail now!

The top nine Training and Development strategies to embrace:

  • Aligning with the business strategy: To pave the way for a value-driven learning and development strategy in a modern organization, L&D executives should ensure that the L&D strategy:
  1. Aligns with the company's business goals as well as the talent strategies
  2. Assists in professional development
  3. Builds capabilities across the company cost-effectively and promptly
  4. Improves the company's culture
  5. Encourages employees to embrace and live the company's values
  6. Supports the execution of the business strategy
  7. Explicitly connects with the company's strategic objectives.

This can be done by analyzing the employees' existing capabilities and narrowing down the skills that are most critical to aid the execution of the company's business strategy. Ideally, L&D leaders must review the skills-goals alignment on a yearly basis. This will ensure that the people on the team are truly reflective of the company's latest priorities and strategic objectives.

  • Driving synergy and co-ownership between the HR and other business teams: Without collaboration and synergy between teams, companies cannot hope to be agile. Whether the HR team wants to launch capability-building programs on the fly or whether they want to adapt to the changing business processes, buy-in from all the teams is essential at every step of the company's learning and development strategy. So how can L&D leaders drive greater partnerships between the teams and the business leaders? Here are a few helpful tips:
  1. Build a governance structure in which everyone, from the CXO to the business unit heads, shares responsibility for defining, prioritizing, and executing L&D programs.
  2. Drive active participation from senior executives to embed a culture of learning across business initiatives and strategic goals.
  • Assessing capability gaps and demands for specific skills in the future: Once the business goals and objectives are in place, the next step is to assess the employee's existing capabilities to ensure that they can deliver on the goals outlined and cater to the needs of the future. To that end, companies should focus on the following:
  1. Assessing capability gaps, particularly for senior leaders and mid-level managers
  2. Embracing an intentional and systematic approach to capability assessment
  3. Building a comprehensive capability model that is centered on the company's strategic direction
  4. Analyzing how employees fit into the overall goals
  5. Closing the capability-goal gap by designing a portfolio of initiatives

Use-Case: How PwC Singapore Catered to the Needs of a More Digital Tomorrow and Addressed the Skills Gap

To help employees upskill and stay relevant to the demands of the future, PwC Singapore undertook the following initiatives:

Step 1: The team identified the key skills that would be "relevant" for the digital future, such as data analytics skills, literacy skills, and visualization skills.

Step 2: With the role of automation increasing in monotonous day-to-day activities, the team encouraged employees to move to different roles that require more human and strategic skills (read: problem-solving, critical thinking, and effective communication).

Step 3: This radical shift was communicated to employees by the senior leaders. Moreover, the leaders "walked the talk" by adopting digital tools in their daily work.

Step 4: Communications were supplemented with a multichannel approach to drive internal awareness via events (think: town halls), regular newsletters, and emails. This helped address key issues and concerns in real time.

Step 5: The firm embraced a robust learning toolkit to hone employee skills, which included the following initiatives:

  • The company conducted internal training for soft skills and technical knowledge—from business writing to regulatory updates.
  • It offered sponsorships and co-funding opportunities for employees who wanted to attend relevant courses approved by SkillsFuture Singapore.
  • To supplement classroom learning, the company embraced on-the-go learning tools such as "Vantage" and the Digital Fitness App (shown below):

These tools provided employees with easy, on-demand access to learning materials. For example, if an employee wants to advance their skills in data analytics, they can simply search for the available resources and watch/listen to/read it at their own pace and convenience.

  • Creating tailored learning journeys and delivering plans for specific roles: Effective and immersive corporate learning comprises two key components: in-person sessions and online learning formats. To take the L&D program to the next level, organizations should embrace a multichannel approach, with an average of five formats being considered ideal for employees. However, executives struggle with numerous challenges when it comes to integrating an L&D program within their schedule. Moreover, business leaders also fear that the training outcome might stunt their career prospects.
    To cater to these issues and ensure a culture of continuous learning, the L&D program should:
  • Accommodate the needs of the executives and ensure that learning occurs over a period of time at the learner's convenience and preferred time
  • Focus on the learning infrastructure and enablers
  • Include interactive experiences such as fieldwork, social learning, on-the-job coaching, workshops, and so on to guarantee better learning
  • Ensure regular follow-ups through pre and post-classroom digital learning sessions

  • Identifying the roadblocks and scaling up execution L&D leaders face numerous challenges when rolling out a sustainable and scalable learning and development program. Here are the top-four obstacles to L&D as per a Udemy report:

Here's how L&D leaders can deliver a holistic learning and development program that is ROI-driven, on time, and under budget:

  • Prioritizing the right initiatives can prevent initiative overload.
  • Driving honest ongoing discussions with business leaders can ensure that the requisite resources and support are available as needed.
  • Driving a small pilot program, targeted at a limited audience, can ensure that the program is successful when rolled out enterprise-wide.
  • Ultimately, launching a skilling hub comprising capability programs that address the need for critical skills and are solely dedicated to Learning and Development.
  • Measuring the impact of business performance: Not understanding what is working (and not working) for the Learning and Development program can be counter-productive. To ensure that the program is headed in the right direction, the L&D team in charge should:
  • Measure the program efficacy against key performance indicators (KPIs) such as:

Business excellence: Understanding how closely aligned all L&D initiatives are with the company's priorities

Learning excellence: Analyzing whether the learning initiatives are bringing about a change in people's behavior and performance

Operational excellence: Reviewing how well the investments and resources are being used

  • Use outcomes-based metrics as opposed to traditional metrics to understand the impact on employee performance, engagement, etc.
  • Analyze how the learning strategy can assist in the organization's priorities and strengthen the health of the enterprise.
  • Review whether the learning program can build the required mindset, skills, and expertise of employees and achieve maximum impact.
  • Assess the employee's capability gap against a comprehensive capability framework.
  • Ensure that the team has access to big data at all times to drive data-driven decision-making.

  • Merging L&D initiatives with HR: The L&D corporate learning initiatives should be integrated with business objectives and the HR agenda. In fact, numerous L&D initiatives overlap with HR goals such as performance management, succession planning, onboarding, etc. To make the most out of company Learning and Development strategy initiatives, L&D leaders should:
  • Connect the initiatives with annual performance reviews and drive consistent, in-the-moment feedback follow-ups and feedback processes.
  • Understand the core HR management practices and processes, and collaborate with HR leaders.
  • Leverage consolidated development feedback and use it as ammunition for advancing the capability-building agenda.
  • Build a high-impact onboarding process to drive greater employee engagement and satisfaction.

  • Enabling a "70:20:10" learning framework: The "70:20:10" signifies the following: 70% of learning occurs on the job, 20% occurs via interaction and collaboration, and 10% occurs using formal-learning interventions (read: classroom training and digital curricula). To implement an effective and all-round system of learning, organizations should support informal learning with other areas of Learning and Development such as:
  • Coaching and mentoring
  • On-the-job instruction
  • Apprenticeships and leadership shadowing
  • Action-based learning
  • On-demand access to digital learning
  • Lunch-and-learn sessions
  • Social learning formats

  • Embracing technology for enabling just-in-time learning: To enable just-in-time learning, organizations need to invest in cloud-based learning- technology platforms and applications. These include:
  • Next-generation learning management systems
  • Virtual classrooms
  • Mobile-learning apps
  • Embedded performance-support systems
  • Polling software
  • Learning-video platforms
  • Learning assessment and measurement platforms
  • Massive open online courses (MOOCs)
  • Small private online courses (SPOCs)

By leveraging these plug-and-unplug systems, L&D leaders can lay the foundation for a scalable and cost-effective learning model with technology at its heart. The right cocktail of tools can assist in core areas of HR development, such as recruitment, onboarding, performance management, real-time feedback, succession planning, career management, and rewards and recognition.

The learning:

The leaders of L&D functions need to realize the importance of enhancing an organization's most significant asset—its employees. This is why embracing an innovative, flexible, and agile L&D approach (read: the Learning and Development strategy template outlined above) is key to creating a pool of future-ready human talent.

  • ensuring that the employees stay engaged with the organization,
  • conducting employee evaluation,
  • filling the learning gaps,
  • creating employee-centric learning solutions,
  • determining how they can drive employee performance, and
  • helping employees climb the success ladder and achieve their career goals.

So, the real question is understanding how L&D and HR are intricately woven together. Here's a table that summarizes the individual differences and the "connect" between both of these disciplines by way of a few everyday use cases:

Moving on, let's understand why HR needs to prioritize Learning and Development initiatives in today's ever-evolving workplace.

  • Gen Z is eager to learn and is demanding newer opportunities to learn: Gen Z employees care about career growth.

With 76% of Gen Z participants being more focused on learning and 69% making efforts to carve out more time to learn, as reported by the LinkedIn survey, HR departments need to laser-focus on an employee's succession planning if they want to retain the best talent. The same study predicted that Gen Z learners watched 50% more hours of learning content per learner in 2020 vs. 2019. Another LinkedIn survey conducted in 2019 claims that a staggering 94% of employees would stay at a company longer if there were an investment in their learning and development. So if companies are not presenting employees with opportunities for learning and development, they are subtly guiding employees through the exit door.

  • Value-driven L&D programs can keep the employees engaged and promote solid mental health: Strategically conceived L&D programs can help build employee resilience and manage anxiety in the workplace—a major concern for 91% of respondents who believe that a company's culture should support mental health. Furthermore, the World Health Organization reported that depression and anxiety disorders cost the global economy $1 trillion each year in lost productivity. Another report by Nespresso claims that Gen Y (98%), Gen X (99%), and Boomers (99%) believe that employee well-being and mental health are of utmost importance. Needless to say, HR managers should integrate wellness programs into the L&D infrastructure by:

  1. Providing regular training sessions with experts.
  2. Curating meaningful mental health programs that are aligned with the employee's personal and professional development goals.
  3. Building modules on work-related stress management with the help of experts and consultants.
  4. Curating an updated list of mental wellness courses for employees.

In fact, organizations such as Starbucks and Unilever are already prioritizing the mental health of their workforce. Additionally, a recent Udemy report claims that there's a four-digit percentage increase in the consumption of content related to anxiety management, stress management, and resilience skills.

  • Skill-building offers a wide range of benefits for the organization: Investing in an L&D program offers 360-degree benefits that go beyond improving employee performance. According to a McKinsey report, 71-90% of respondents claim that skill transformations have had a positive impact on four company outcomes: the ability to realize company strategy, employees' performance, employee satisfaction, and reputation as an employer. From the organization's perspective, the benefits of supporting the employees' skill-building in a programmatic way include:

  • Saved hiring costs: The disadvantages of employee turnover need no introduction. According to the Employee Benefit News, employers end up spending an average of 33% of a worker's annual salary to replace just one employee. The math is simple. Retaining employees is more profitable for a company's bottom line than hiring new employees. By extension, HR managers should place emphasis on driving engaging and relevant learning experiences to arm employees with new skills, help them engage in internal mobility within the company, and fuel the employees' appetite for learning.

  • Increased profits: According to the Harvard Business Review, developing an employee's strengths can offer the following advantages:
  • 10%-19% increase in sales
  • 14%-29% increase in profit
  • 3%-7% increase in customer engagement
  • 9%-15% increase in engaged employees
  • 6- to 16-point decrease in turnover (in low-turnover organizations)
  • 26- to 72-point decrease in turnover (in high-turnover organizations)
  • 22%-59% decrease in safety incidents
  • Competitive edge: Research by the WEF states that 50% of all employees will need to be reskilled by 2025. The moral of the story? If organizations do not focus on reskilling/upskilling their employees, they are at a decided disadvantage. In simpler words, they can lose their competitive edge which stems from an outdated workforce. For L&D professionals and HR managers, the need of the hour is to identify the current and future skills gap and work toward curating an end-to-end learning and development framework.

In summary:

HR leaders need to view talent as a "renewable resource" and leverage L&D as the primary asset to attract and retain employees. Furthermore, it is clear that the key to a Gen Z worker's heart is career growth. Why HR leaders should invest in training and development efforts to reap significant benefits such as:

  • Sustained business growth
  • Reduced skills-talent gap
  • Greater high-value talent retention rates
  • Improved workplace culture
  • Increased employee morale, trust, and loyalty within the company

Learning and Development in HR can offer tangible and intangible benefits for the organization and employees alike. HR managers that do not engage in succession planning and prioritize employee-centric career growth will miss out on promoting high-quality talent for future organizational goals—a fatal mistake in today's cut-throat landscape.

A. Learning: It signifies the acquisition of skills, knowledge, and attitudes through experience and teaching.

B. Development: It signifies the deepening of knowledge with respect to the employee's personal and organizational development goals. It is relatively long-term in approach. The end goal of L&D is to

  • enhance individual/group performance and efficiency,
  • drive behavioral change within the individual/group in the organization.
  • share knowledge and insights to supercharge employee performance, and
  • build a culture of holistic workplace learning.

The pandemic has transformed nearly every sector—Human Resources and L&D are not exceptions. Here's why Learning & Development is increasingly becoming important in the current employee development landscape.

  • Skill-building is becoming common-place: Did you know that Amazon is investing over $700M to provide upskilling training to their employees? Furthermore, according to a recent Udemy report, 38% of the workforce was upskilled in 2020. Another McKinsey report claims that for 69% of respondents, their organizations are engaging more in skill-building now than they did before the COVID-19 crisis began. The primary factor driving this change? The immediate need to close the skills gap. In fact, the report suggests that around 62% of organizations consider skill development to be one of the top three goals for L&D programs.
  • Skill requirements are fast-changing: COVID-19 is accelerating the need for new workforce skills as suggested by the McKinsey Report. With the surge in digitization and remote work, employees need to exhibit a slew of new skills to adapt to and support the "new" workforce. Interestingly, the new must-have skills that emerged on top were social and emotional skills such as:

  • Empathy and inter-personal (particularly in the healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors)
  • Leadership
  • Adaptability
  • Critical-thinking
  • Decision-making
  • Project management
  • In other words, "softer" and more "advanced" cognitive skills are taking center stage. Additionally, basic digital skills have also become a raging priority for obvious reasons since the pandemic began.

  • Need for redeploying talent to new roles: 46% of respondents claim that there has been an increase in redeploying talent at their respective organizations. Moreover, a LinkedIn survey indicates that "learners without the obvious skills adjacencies are making the leap into emerging roles." In simpler words, employees who have moved into "emerging roles" over the past five years came from entirely different occupations. For instance, half of the employees who moved into data science and artificial intelligence (AI) roles came from unrelated industries. The same is true for engineering roles (67%), content roles (72%), and sales (75%). Moreover, people who transitioned into data and AI had the largest variation in skill profiles, with half of them possessing skills with low similarity. Clearly, the need for L&D is no longer a one-time investment. Organizations will continually need to regroup to understand the degree of skill-building required as the workplace demands change.

Now that we've understood how integrally tied skill-building is to Learning & Development initiatives, let's look at the top 3 skills employees must ace as stated in the latest LinkedIn survey. According to the survey, the following "power" skills are critical to future-proofing employees and helping them thrive in a competitive workplace going forward:

  • Resilience and adaptability: Organizations are increasingly looking for employees who can flex their resilience muscles as needed. This is where learning plays a critical role as 60% of employees surveyed globally reported that learning makes them more capable of adapting to change.
  • Technology skills/digital fluency: For an employee to qualify as being digitally fluent, they need to have the requisite technology skills to effectively operate in an increasingly digital world. From Microsoft Office skills to advanced Artificial Intelligence capabilities, employees must be proficient across the spectrum.
  • Communication across remote or distributed teams: Enterprises are also on the lookout for employees who can easily work and collaborate in a virtual working environment. Other skills that made to the top 10 list include:
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Cross-functional collaboration
  • Leading through change
  • Change management
  • Dealing with stress/being more mindful
  • Time management
  • Creativity

Additionally, the survey also highlights the fastest-growing top 5 skills in the business, sales, IT, and engineering domains. These include:

  • Business: Customer Experience, Digital Marketing, Data Analysis, Financial Statements, Forecasting, and Analytical Skills
  • Sales: Data Analysis, Technical Support, Customer Relationship Management, Sales Process, and Consulting
  • Information Technology: Cybersecurity, Network Engineering, Analytical Skills, Scrum, and Information Security
  • Engineering: React.js, Docker, AWS, Node.js, and MongoDB

In Summary:

In 2022, Learning & Development will involve enhancing the effectiveness of organizations and improving individuals' performance by focusing on skill-building and redeploying talent into new roles. When it comes to understanding what is L&D and embracing its essence, enterprises need to remember that

One, it has emerged as a "need-to-have" as opposed to being a nice-to-have component for employee development.

Two, they need to double down on their efforts to upskill or reskill employees if they wish to close the ever-widening skills gap.

Three, they need to align their L&D strategy with the organizational goals and reshape the way their enterprise operates in 2022.