As the economy picks up (whether into a V or a W) work patterns will become more erratic and reduced workforces will be stretched until sufficient confidence returns to add new people. This means employees working hard and carrying out tasks they aren’t used to or even trained for. Under increased work and learning pressure tempers can fray and levels of service can slip at a critical time for customer confidence.
An ideal learning solution is to ensure that everyone has the right training and plenty of time to try out new skills, but that has to be balanced with the reality of already stretched workforces and increasing customer demands. Organisations are turning more and more to pragmatic blended solutions, giving people just enough training and support to get through whilst a better long term solution is worked out. Peer to peer coaching, just in time training, and handy user guides are all making a valuable contribution to ‘getting on with it’.
E-learning is providing a valuable link in the chain. When employees need a quick boost in knowledge, a reminder of key processes, and an improvement in confidence, a twenty minute session around a core skill provides just enough input for employees, providing motivation to carry on with learning at a later date.
As customers start placing orders and workflow increases we’re seeing signs of creative and ambitious employees seeing opportunities to grow their jobs, experience and responsibilities. Budgets remain tight and learning interventions need to be targeted, but employers that want to keep hold of their brightest talents are working hard to provide them with the development they crave. Coaching, mentoring and e-learning all provide key elements of the development mix in straightened times.