L&D Best Practices

How Learning Can Future-Proof Your Organization for Whatever Comes Next

Stephanie Stapleton

Director of Customer Success at Udemy for Business

June 25, 2018

The rapidly changing business landscape and constant need for reskilling creates a high bar for learning & development (L&D) leaders. How do you build L&D programs that keep pace with change, resonate with your employees, and move the needle on performance? I love hearing how our customers at Udemy for Business are innovating new ways to deliver learning and build a culture of learning at their organization.

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Last week, we hosted our first Udemy for Business People Innovators Panel event in London—featuring L&D and People leaders from EY, Intel, and Just Eat. Our panelists shared insights on how they’re innovating new ways to embed learning in their business to keep employee skills up to date and future-proof their organization for whatever comes next. Here are some of the ways L&D and People leaders in the UK are redefining the corporate learning space to prepare for the future of work.

Earning credentials in future-focused skills

Leaders across all organizations are beginning to recognize that they’re not doing enough, fast enough to keep up with disruption. Udemy for Business customer EY, a 29-year-old global professional services firm, helps businesses and governments solve their toughest challenges. Preparing the EY workforce to solve complex problems using the latest innovations is essential for EY’s continued success. To prepare for the future of work, EY’s innovative learning & development programs encourage employees to learn “hot” skills like data science, robotics, and artificial intelligence (AI).

“Our global executives at EY laid out a challenge: how do we ensure we have the right skills for tomorrow? How do we build the right capabilities for the future? To prepare our workforce for the future of work, we launched our new EY Badges program to incentivize employees and managers to prioritize time to learn,” explains Jon Turner, Global Learning Portfolio Manager in HR Services at EY.

The EY Badges Program encourages employees to invest in their skills by earning digital credentials in areas like AI, analytics, or digital age leadership that differentiate them as employees and EY as a company in the market. The 4 levels of EY badges (bronze, silver, gold, and platinum) are earned through world-class learning, fulfilling required experiences, and making a contribution to learning through coaching or training others and thought leadership.

“EY’s biggest challenge is being able to keep up with the fast pace of change. Udemy for Business helps us do this by enabling our employees to access their highly curated and up-to-date learning content in hot skill areas like AI and analytics,” says Jon. Learn more about The Top 10 Tech & Soft Skills in 2018 trending on the Udemy platform in our newest ebook.

Eliminate any friction in the learning journey

How else can you get employees to learn often and quickly? Udemy for Business customer Intel, a global high-tech firm, views learning as essential to innovating its new products from drones to the internet of things. As a result, Intel’s L&D team focuses on making it easy to learn by lowering any barriers and creating a seamless learning journey.

“Our digital learning strategy aims to create a unified learning experience through a three-pronged approach. First, we study our user experience and observe how our people are actually learning. Second, we make sure our learners have access to the best content available. Finally, we take a service-oriented approach to support the best learning experiences. We spend time analyzing processes and tools and keep iterating to deliver learning faster and better to our employees,” says Tom Rynkowski, Learning Experience Manager at Intel.

Continuous drip feed learning

People can also get overwhelmed by having access to too much content. They don’t always know where to start or look. It’s Talent Development’s job to curate this content and feed relevant content to the right employees when they might need it. At Just Eat, a global food ordering service, the Talent Development team prioritizes delivering this kind of just-in-time learning for their employees.

“We continuously drip feed content to our employees to remind them to take time out for their development. For new managers, we have created bespoke online courses to help them succeed as a new manager at Just Eat. We also have what we call ‘Talent Tuesdays’ where we feature hot topics via our intranet, email, and social channels. It might be unconscious bias with links to courses or a discussion about what’s going on the business,” shares Emma Arlow, Talent Development Partner at Just Eat.

The Just Eat Talent Development team also shares the curation responsibility with their employees. Rather than just having L&D post courses on their intranet, employees also recommend courses they took and how it helped them with their career development. They also have “employee champions” on the ground in their global offices to promote learning. This creates a grassroots, peer-to-peer approach to building a culture of learning.

L&D keep on learning

Preparing your employees for the future of work is not going to happen overnight. L&D pros must constantly innovate new ways to engage employees in learning. The panelists’ last word of advice to L&D peers in London and around the globe: Come to more events like this, take time out of your work to share your successes and get new ideas to take back to your organization.

To hear more insights from the panelists, watch the entire video here.

Stephanie Stapleton is Director of Customer Success at Udemy for Business. She and her team are responsible for driving customer engagement and ensuring customers achieve their business outcomes with Udemy for Business. Stephanie has been leading Customer Success at tech startups in San Francisco for the past 6 years. She holds a B.A. in Communication and a B.A. in Global and International Studies from University of California at Santa Barbara.

Udemy for Business is a learning platform that helps companies stay competitive in the digital transformation of the workplace by offering fresh, relevant, and personalized on-demand learning content, curated from the Udemy marketplace. Our mission is to help employees do whatever comes next—whether that’s the next project to do, skill to learn, or role to master. We’d love to partner with you on your employee development needs. Get in touch with us at business@udemy.com

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