What Learning & Development Trends to look for in 2019

Illumeo Customer Success's Profile

Companies are increasing the amount they spend on learning and development (L&D) every year, which makes sense. Human capital is, after all, a company’s biggest asset. Ensuring that your employees are happy, effective, and efficient should be the goal of every company. That’s why, as we move into 2019, we must reflect on what worked in 2018, what didn't, and what we should look forward to in 2019.

What worked in 2018?

Using technology to help employees easily access learning and training programs is one thing that worked well in 2018 and that we’ll continue to see in the future. Offering employees the ability to use mobile technology helped companies see an increase in the effectiveness of training programs. In 2019 we’ll see the technology trend continue to grow, especially when it comes to gamification programs. Implementing programs that include point systems and community involvement is a great way to incentivize employees and make the learning process a little more fun — meaning that employees are more likely to actually participate and learn.

What didn't work in 2018?

Many companies struggled to see their L&D investments reach full ROI in 2018. Why? Because HR and leaders in the C-suite weren't on the same page. When leaders and HR fail to communicate, the company wastes resources like time and money. HR implemented training programs that, while well-intentioned, didn't necessarily deliver the right kind of knowledge and skills employees needed.

One of the biggest problems with programs that many companies offer is that they deliver content that is “one size fits all”. These kinds of programs were never very effective, but they are even less so now. In today’s world, employees should be treated more like consumers. They are used to getting custom content, and that is something that they now need from their employers. The good news is that the content doesn’t have to be brand new every time. You can repurpose content and use content found in other places to deliver an effective training program.

What should we look forward to in 2019?

Well, to see an improvement over 2018 HR and the C-suite must ensure everyone agrees on the needs of the employees and management so that everyone will see an improvement in performance and effectiveness. It’s important to note that both sides must listen to each other as they decide on goals for the upcoming year. Management must make sure HR understands the kinds of employees they need, and to help HR develop new employees by implementing mentorship programs and leadership development programs.

Speaking of communication, in 2019 companies are going to need to focus on helping employees improve their communication skills, as well as other soft skills like emotional intelligence (EQ). As a matter of fact, 90% of companies who took part in a Deloitte survey listed soft skills as a critical priority for their employees.