The workplace has changed – in the modern workplace employees want to be challenged, they want to be educated and they want to be developed. A decade ago, the term learning and development was relatively unheard of, however now we are seeing more and more businesses allocate resources and funds to this very topic. But what is continuous learning? How can we create a culture of learning? And why is it important for business success?

What is continuous learning?

Previously adults would attend college or university, move into a profession and stay within that profession and most likely that organisation for the duration of their career. Due to advances in technology, the globalisation of the office, and different workplace priorities this is no longer the case. What employees would like from a career in the 21st Century is to be continuously developed and to be retained through the challenges of a diverse and ever-expanding role with opportunities for promotion. This is exactly where continuous and lifelong learning fits right in! Continuous learning provides employees with further knowledge and skills in order to do their job successfully. Employees want to be developed and upskilled whilst working on the job AND they want their employer to cover the associated costs relating to their development. So……..? I hear you ask. How can a business do this and still be successful?

How can we create a culture of learning?

A culture of continuous learning can be fostered by assessing what your employees actually want from their workplaces. Individual development areas can be covered in performance reviews. These can then be looped into the employee’s personal (Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) in the form of attendance at a course, or by commencing the first year of study towards a relevant and agreed-upon qualification. Funding may be covered in whole or in part by the organisation, and so to stay ahead of the curve it is imperative that businesses forecast and have a budget for learning and development. Examples of continuous learning range from qualifications, courses, peer mentoring, licenses, certificates, e-learning and training. Continuous learning can be adopted in a more cost-efficient way through creating peer-to-peer training options and buddy mentoring programmers. Training and development can therefore be adopted in-house or can be external (i.e., by a CIPD level 3, 5 or 7 qualification). Learning could take place during work hours or outside of work hours depending on what is agreed individually.

Why is continuous learning important for business success?

So, why should a business allocate all its extra funding and resources to continuous learning? Shouldn’t our employees pay to keep themselves up to date with the latest qualifications to ensure they are staying competitive? Well, no, it seems that is not the case. In order to recruit the best talent, businesses need to stay competitive and provide them with opportunities to develop and learn in the workplace. This will therefore create a brand as a reputable employer and allow organisations to cherry-pick the best of the best. Upskilling your team can also help retain them and stay with your organisation rather than seeking out your competitors. It also encourages feelings of value in the employees and shows that the organisation cares about their individual success. Providing options for continuous learning also helps to keep your team at the forefront of trends, innovation and workplace developments allowing them to possess the tools to be of great value to the productivity and strategy of your business.
Register your employees for one of our CIPD courses today! Qualifications are available at levels 3, 5 and 7.

Check out Avado, the UK’s most trusted CIPD course provider today for HR and L&D courses:

CIPD Level 3 HR and L&D qualification: The CIPD Level 3 Certificate in people practice is ideal for anyone looking to start a career in either HR or Learning and Development.
CIPD Level 5 HR qualification: The CIPD Level 5 Associate Diploma in People Management will help you build on your existing HR knowledge.
CIPD Level 5 L&D qualification: The CIPD Level 5 Diploma in Organisational Learning and Development is the most comprehensive course available for L&D professionals, ideal for you if you want to formalise your existing experience, skills and knowledge.
CIPD Level 7 HR qualification: The CIPD Level 7 Advanced Diploma is aimed at expanding learners’ autonomy so they can strategically direct organisations and their people.

Nilesh Jha