Meeting the L&D Needs of Your Distributed Teams

Viren Kapadia January 30, 2023
Meeting the L&D Needs of Your Distributed Teams

An increasingly complex and competitive business landscape, the digital revolution, the accelerating pace of technological advancements, and the shorter shelf life for knowledge had been keeping L&D teams awake at night. Then came the pandemic, which led us into the future of work, where distributed teams and hybrid work are now the new normal.

These shifts and the pursuant rise of a digital, knowledge-based economy have placed a premium on reskilling and upskilling initiatives. Research shows a clear connection between increased learning opportunities and increased performance. As such, elevating L&D strategies are on top of the mind across organizations.

What Do Distributed Teams Need Today?

Addressing the learning needs of employees is a key enabler of employee engagement. Intelligent enterprises realize that helping employees augment their skill sets in meaningful ways, clear career pathing initiatives, and professional development offer significant benefits to not just employees but enterprises as well.

Effectively adapting L&D strategies for the distributed work environment requires a laser focus on the following:

  1. Uniform Experiences
  2. Research shows that remote employees who receive training from their employers feel more valued by their employers (63%) than those who don't (44%). They are also more productive (72%) and communicate better with their teams.

    Learning experiences have to become uniform for employees across teams, whether in-office or remote. Optimizing classroom experiences, delivering high-quality two-way virtual experiences, consistent process of assessment and evaluation, etc., are key consideration points. This ensures that the learning needs of all employees, irrespective of location, are taken care of.

    L&D teams need to, as such, leverage new technologies and AI-powered comprehensive LMS platforms to drive training agility while also capably delivering elevated, engaging, and uniform learning experiences to their employees.

  3. Upskilling and Reskilling at Scale
  4. 87% of millennials state that development is a key factor when deciding to accept a position. As enterprises battle high attrition and a tight labor market, optimizing L&D initiatives is a great strategy to drive employee engagement and retention.

    Given the rising skills gap, L&D teams need to create and deliver upskilling and reskilling initiatives at scale across the entire enterprise. They need to ensure that the pace of development of remote teams matches that of the in-premise teams.

    Developing the mechanisms to roll out upskilling and reskilling programs proactively to address the learning needs of the enterprise thus becomes crucial for L&D teams. The role of a powerful and comprehensive LMS platform cannot be ignored here.

    comprehensive LMS platform allows L&D teams to create and deploy training and learning material to address the changing needs of their workforce, irrespective of their location.

  5. Customized and Contextual Content
  6. Connection and context are the secret sauce that makes any learning program work. If, however, learning and development teams are constantly relying on guesswork and not data to identify learning needs, then building contextual programs gets harder. And without context, there is no learning engagement, and consequently, learning outcomes are poor. Customized and contextual content helps the employee feel valued, ensures active learning, and drives higher engagement irrespective of the employee's location.

    Effective learning programs help the workforce to develop the skills that will augment professional development and take their career pathing initiatives further. L&D teams, as such, need to employ gap and need analysis to identify the learning needs of their remote and in-premise workforce.

    A data-backed approach provides the clarity to create customized, contextual, and relevant learning programs. It helps L&D teams curate the right kind of learning programs, provides additional and supplementary learning materials such as case studies, webinars, etc., according to need, and creates tailored learning strategies that aid skills development.

  7. Analytics Leads the Way
  8. Distributed teams need effective and impactful learning programs that will help them with their career progression. Dated programs are no longer relevant as the world of work remains in a state of constant disruption. These teams also want access to fresh, relevant learning content and want proactive course correction of dated programs.

    L&D teams today need to combine both in-office and remote training and also accelerate their capacity to deploy fresh content with fluidity and ease. Furthermore, they need to capably measure the effectiveness of their learning programs and create action plans to mitigate any gaps along the way.

    As such, L&D teams need access to deep analytics to gauge the effectiveness of their learning programs. They need to develop a clear performance rubric that provides quality and efficient feedback. Multiple feedback opportunities at key points of the program provide clear insights into things that are working and those that need improvement. With clear insights into learner behavior, L&D teams can curate effective learning journeys to meet the varying needs of a disparate workforce.

  9. Anytime, Anywhere Learning
  10. Distributed teams also need greater flexibility to access L&D programs and training. Mobile enablement and anywhere, anytime access, thus, becomes a crucial capability for enterprises to develop. As continuous learning becomes a central component of the employee value proposition, creating flexible and easy-to-access learning programs becomes vital as well.

    Crisp, engaging, and interactive learning programs reduce cognitive load and drive better knowledge retention. Along with this, mobile enablement ensures that learning programs can be accessed easily. Delivering engaging training content in a variety of formats and ensuring easy access drive greater learning engagement, increase completion rates, and augment knowledge retention.

    This aspect becomes especially important for field sales teams, frontline workers, and industries such as oil & gas, where getting everyone together for training is hard. Self-guided, customized, and mobile-enabled training programs allow these employees, whether working remotely or not, to stay updated on all the skills needed to accelerate their career outcomes.

Summing Up

Considering the high attrition rates and skill shortage, attracting the right talent is a tough challenge across businesses. The rise of distributed teams has given organizations access to wider talent pools and can alleviate this challenge considerably. However, enterprises have to empower and support employees to reach their individual goals to keep everyone across this pool equally and actively engaged.

In this global and hybrid workplace, L&D teams can play a vital role in helping organizations build a value-based culture and create trust bridges across geographies by helping provide employees with opportunities to learn and develop new competencies. This boosts engagement and keeps them motivated, energized, and satisfied with their current organization.

Connect with our team of experts to see how an AI-powered LMS platform adds velocity and agility to your enterprise's L&D needs and discover new ways to influence and engage your distributed workforce.