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How will learning and development evolve as we return to work?

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By: Luke Goodlet, Executive Director of Operations at The Skills Network

 

Over the last 18 months, many lives have changed dramatically. With businesses feeling the impact of the pandemic and having to shift their daily operations to an online setting, both employers and staff have had to quickly adopt to new ways of learning remotely and working online.

With the end of social distancing and life slowly returning to normality, the adoption of online learning and working is showing no signs of slowing. In fact, it looks as if the future will take a hybrid approach. With increased access to sophisticated technology, data and artificial intelligence, online learning providers are in a position to truly provide employees with the best digital learning and development experiences.

The online learning revolution has happened, so where do we go from here?

Whilst online learning has been accelerated by the pandemic, employees can provide learning anytime, anywhere – removing barriers such as location, time of learning, and even speed of training.

The digital resources which have taken years to create and invest in are now made available to workplaces who can use them as they wish to support learning. As true believers of “flipped learning”, and with the help of technology, at The Skills Network we’ve developed tools that support this framework, allowing companies to tailor their staff’s learning journeys.

However, whilst many still say that that there is little to no interaction with online learning, this couldn’t be further away from the truth. Learning takes much more than a Zoom call, or uploading countless documents to a platform.

Learning providers still need to respond to questions, give feedback and support staff – this is where the blended approaches come in. It’s important to consider that the new generation also expects online learning in some form – for many individuals, the world has been digital since they were born.

Accessing specialist tutors whenever and wherever you’re located is also a possibility, and can be used to support the smallest to largest company, taking staff who’s undertaking learning and training through a journey and helping them get through their personal challenges.

Teaching a modern-day workforce remotely

Having previously partnered with the likes of The Landmark London, Thomson Reuters and the NHS, we’ve recently teamed up with Scottish-based brewery and pub chain BrewDog. We helped the company create its first online learning academy for its 2,000 strong workforce.

The ‘BrewDog Academy’ hosts online courses for employees to access and gain national qualifications. As part of the partnership, BrewDog employees have free access to nearly 30 nationally recognised Level 1 and 2 courses across of range of sectors and industries, with everything available to study, from an award in ‘Mental Health Awareness’ to a certificate in ‘Team Leader Supervisor’.

With the past year having a massive effect on employees, BrewDog approached The Skills Network to help provide employees with the opportunity to continue to grow and develop their skills. By offering access to a wide range of free courses, expert tutors, and a dedicated company platform, we can help support hundreds of adults to upskill and gain new qualifications at the same time.

It’s really exciting to work with a business like BrewDog and to be able to deliver a tailor-made programme that is completely personalised to the company’s goals and employees’ skillsets. This enables them to build knowledge within the business whilst rewarding staff by investing in learning and development.

For more information on The Skills Network visit www.theskillsnetwork.com.

 

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