How to create a pull learning culture that closes skill gaps and cultivates talent from within

August 29, 2019 By John Hill

With today’s low unemployment rate and tight labor market, the ability for workers to “reskill” is incredibly important. Organizations are becoming increasingly aware of the major role learning must play in order to fill skill gaps – 84% of respondents in a Deloitte survey said they were increasing their investment in reskilling programs so they can develop the talent they already have.

We all know that learning and development (L&D) programs are necessary within organizations, but only recently have executives began to understand the impact successful L&D initiatives can have on employee productivity, retention, and overall business success.

The recent tightening of the labor market has encouraged executives to invest in learning and development for their workforce, focusing on learning programs that close skills gaps and cultivate talent from within.

L&D has always been necessary for staying compliant and keeping employees up-to-date with the latest certifications (typical of a push learning culture), but this new executive buy-in brings up a crucial question: How do organizations create a learning culture that encourages their employees to want to learn and continue to develop at every inflection point of the employee lifecycle?

Before we answer this question, it is important to understand the difference between two common learning approaches: push vs. pull.

Push: A manager-driven learning approach where learners are told what and how much they must learn.

Pull: A learner-driven, bottom-up approach that enables people to access the information they need when and where it is needed.

Evolve to a work-centered learning approach

The relationship between learning and work is changing at a rapid pace and companies are discovering the long-term benefits of embracing a pull model of learning. According to the 2019 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends, organizations are moving towards robust work-centered learning programs that encourage employees to upgrade their skills in the natural course of their day-to-day jobs. In other words, the way in which we work and learn should be connected and integrated into one workflow, where workers can effortlessly pull the information they need to develop skills that are beneficial for their personal development and overall business success.

Use technology to create a pull learning culture

Today’s learning solutions are evolving to be more like the technologies we use in our daily life such as streaming videos and social media. Mobility and responsive design enable employees to access personalized learning content from anywhere—PC, laptop, tablet, smartphone, etc.—and have a consistent user experience regardless of the device they’re using.

Implementing a modern learning solution will help your organization develop the key elements of a successful pull learning culture:

  1. Employees are self-motivated to develop themselves
  2. Employees can personalize learning to individual styles and preferences
  3. People have easy access to a variety of learning options
  4. Employees use social elements to advance learning
  5. Learning is viewed as a continuous process
  6. L&D professionals and other leaders serve as champions and facilitators of learning
  7. Technology optimizes cultivation and measurement of learning and development

Ultimately, for pull learning to work at your organization, the right contemporary technology must deliver flexible, personalized, and seamless experiences that employees increasingly expect in the workplace. People will be more apt to seek out development opportunities if they have a great user experience that’s built around their needs and makes learning options easy to find and share.

Cultivate talent from within

Is your organization’s learning and development program in need of a refresh in order to keep up with the increasingly competitive labor market? The more successful you are in nurturing a dynamic pull learning culture that allows employees to pursue their passions and stay current on required training, the more likely your people are to develop in ways meaningful to themselves and to your business – ultimately closing skill gaps and increasing employee retention.

Unlock your workforce’s potential with Infor Learning Management System (LMS).

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  • Technology
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  • Learning Management System
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