HomeFuture of WorkDigital HRDigital TransformationThe changing nature of the workplace and its challenges

The changing nature of the workplace and its challenges

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Organisations and individuals are operating in an increasingly complex and evolving environment. Ralph La Fontaine examines the need for digital skills.

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Organisations and individuals are operating in an increasingly complex and evolving environment. Ralph La Fontaine examines the need for digital skills.

In association with Home Learning College by Avado

The workplace has changed through the advent of digital technology, across all industries, and people are communicating and collaborating in unprecedented ways.  Digital skills have now become absolutely essential, but many workers are falling short, creating a digital skills crisis. According to a report by the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee the UK alone is facing a shortage of digital skills which is currently costing the economy an estimated £63bn a year.

In the field of Learning and Development (L&D) things are similarly aligned. CIPD and Towards Maturity produced the report L&D: Evolving Roles, Enhancing Skills which identified a significant L&D skills gaps in emerging technologies and practice. The Towards Maturity benchmark explored the skills that L&D professionals consider to be a priority for the future against those skills they had the capability for in-house:

  • 86% were using live online learning tools (for example, webinars or virtual classrooms) yet only 34% agreed that they had the skills to deliver online
  • 76% were developing online content in-house but only 31% said they had the skills.

Key change driver

Addressing this digital skills gap is essential as research identifies technological growth as a key driver of change in organisations. In light of these findings CIPD Training partnered with Home Learning College to develop and deliver the first fully online L&D qualifications.

These innovative qualifications focus on the identified skills gap and aim to create a transformative experience resulting in measurable impact in the L&D practice. By learning through digital technology, learners not only gain knowledge in this area but will also experience for themselves how online learning works and take back practical skills to apply immediately in their organisation.

Current L&D level five learner Ewan Laing said: “I was drawn to the course because it allowed me to gain a better understanding for how my skills in learning technologies and digital learning can be put to good use and have a direct and positive impact on our strategies as a business and as an L&D team. The programme has given me a whole new enthusiasm to convince our people that a more digital approach to learning has to be seriously considered and adopted to ensure that our learning culture strengthens over time.”

Increased competencies

A recent survey of our learners on the programme showed substantial increases in the proportion of employees assessing themselves as fairly or very capable in each section after the course:

  • Using social media effectively: 25% (pre-course) up to 92% (post-course)
  • Creating digital content: 38% up to 80%
  • Online or blended learning delivery: 39% up to 99%
  • Supporting learners online: 38% up to 97%

These results are testament to the winning combination of the CIPD L&D content expertise and the exceptional, online learning experience delivered by Home Learning College. Working together they are building the L&D professionals of the future and helping to bridge the digital skills gap within the industry.

Click here to find out more about these pioneering online professional L&D qualifications and explore how you and your organisation can address the digital skills crisis.

Ralph La Fontaine is Managing Director of digital distance learning platform Home Learning College

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