Why it’s a Great Time to be in HR and L&D

leaderteam80620303HR and Learning and Development professionals have a unique opportunity for personal and professional growth as business transformation impacts practically every organization on the planet. If you are hiring, training or are responsible for these processes, it’s likely that senior management has already asked you to take a leading role in the quest for agility and it’s a great time to inventory every object in the toolbox.

Workforce knowledge and skills are at the center of transformation. If your workforce doesn’t see the end-user as the center of everything — for example if they haven’t matched segment needs with offerings before automation— it is likely that your organization will struggle.

The good news is that you have an exceptional opportunity to help fill that gap because you are in the optimal position to make the case for your workforce and your customers. Consider your role in ensuring success:

  1. Technology must be connected to process. Practically everyone in the organization, especially your technologists, need to understand the underlying business before automation (or practically anything else) can be integrated and run seamlessly.
  1. Best practices need to be developed, tested and the loop has to be closed. Most business cases need to be driven by the voice of the customer and exceptions need to be managed.
  1. Innovation occurs (read: growth opportunities). A wide range of technological, business, process and people skills are required to support innovation and growth in most modern roles. Many organizations use T-Shaped Skills models to help visualize the required skills and core competencies.
  1. Skills gap analysis. When skills gaps aren’t analyzed and hiring, onboarding and training aren’t appropriately adjusted, the complete HR and L&D ecosystem can be jeopardized.

I imagine that I’m “preaching to the choir”; as an HR / L&D professional, you are likely in position to see incredible potential within your organization and it’s possible that you are one of the few who have that vision. You have an excellent opportunity to help your organization understand that the leadership, strategy, innovation and cost-containment goals common to most organizations, are entirely dependent on the workforce knowledge and skills necessary to accomplish the job.

As you know, HR and L&D adds value in practically any organization. At Global Knowledge, we often find that organizations are somewhere on the continuum between three distinct levels of workforce maturity and we would be very interested in learning how the following map to your organization.

1. Highly innovative, agile organizations recognize the need for agility.

HR and L&D often drive workforce transformation in tandem with senior management as follows:

  • Management develops long-term strategies and the financial metrics necessary to evaluate meaningful goals.
  • Goals are mapped to the knowledge and skills necessary to meet requirements.
  • Skills gaps are analyzed and learning paths defined.
  • Curriculums are developed that align organizational needs with professional development objectives.
  • Costs are forecasted and a mix of corporate and department budgets are proactively managed.
  • Incentive programs are often used to encourage participation.
  • Goals are measured.
  • HR and L&D actively research and implement new and enhanced educational methods and are rewarded when those programs are proven productive.

2. The organization is ready for change but there’s a long way to go.

HR and L&D are aware of needs, however, the process needs work and new disrupters tend to overload the system:

  • Business, workforce and technology disrupters have reduced workforce efficiency and the organization recognizes the need to evolve to remain competitive.
  • Analysis, plan design, change management and performance measurement are usually understood, but the loop isn’t closed.
  • HR and L&D change managers want to build a culture where individual contributions are valued.
  • The quality of underlying processes is usually weak.
  • These organizations are often capable of weathering individual disrupters, but are forced into unforeseen “corners” when disrupters combine.

3. Workforces need help regardless of organizational direction.

HR and L&D recognize the need for change, however, there are only small pockets of interest across the organization:

  • Highly responsive departments, teams or individuals are often at the front of the innovation curve.
  • They often move at a rapid pace as a result of the flexibility common with small teams.
  • It’s likely that they are aware of need for additional learning and look to you to help them obtain the knowledge and skills necessary to meet these opportunities
  • Budgets for analysis, planning or change management may not be available. However, you are probably in the best position to help uncover any available funds and help make the case for positive return on investment

Where is your organization on the road to transformation?


Where could you use some help?

If you’re in a highly innovative organization where agility is starting to happen, remember that transformation is usually more complex than anyone imagines. There are generally more disruptors “waiting in the wings” and skills and knowledge requirements change rapidly.

Think of Global Knowledge as a force multiplier, to help you finish what you have already started. We walk in the door with the experience necessary to help reinforce your work at any stage in the process. Our packaged projects focus on analysis, design, change management and education and give you the flexibility to pick and choose any services, business, or technology courses.

If your organization is ready for change but needs help, Global knowledge provides the “total loop” experience to reinforce your plans, budgets and goals and helps the entire organization recognize opportunities to create value. Speed to market, quality and containing rework are among the top challenges in modern organizations. Take a look at our Business Analysis and Continuous Improvement portfolio and let’s chat about expanding competencies that rapidly yield results.

And wherever you are in the process:

  • Increase strategic planning, efficiency and customer focus by expanding your workforce’s project management and business analysis
  • Help technologists become more strategic and business personnel understand the full potential of technology to meet customer needs with ITIL certifications.
  • Increase collaboration and efficiency with management and leadership focused on core skills like communication, organizational, finance, sales and marketing.
  • If you need help with analysis, planning or change management, consider our business solutions services; where Global Knowledge workforce optimization consultants help you turn disrupters into opportunities.

Help Global Knowledge hone our market research at SHRM2015, receive a free copy of our study, and benchmark your organization! We know that Human Resources and Learning & Development professionals are in the optimal position to help us understand organizational needs for workforce transformation, technology and business learning services. If you’re attending SHRM 2015, June 28 to July 1 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, stop by our booth #2709 so that we can learn more about your workforce and you can sign up for the Global Knowledge SHRM2015 Attendees Benchmarking Report!


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