A Strong L&D Strategy is Based on Setting Goals and Measuring Success
Learning and development (L&D) is the core of your company’s success, and it demands a deliberate strategy to set your team up to be top performers. An arsenal of quality L&D content allows your team to succeed with just-in-time information in the field and efficient training materials for professional development.
To make your L&D strategy the best that it can be, develop your content with specific goals in mind, and set metrics to measure progress toward those goals.
Develop your content with goals in mind.
Start your L&D strategy planning by considering what you want your content to accomplish. Define specific goals, and consider your content as a tool for reaching them. The following examples are common expectations of a successful L&D strategy, but each require a clear definition of what success looks like before you can begin collecting data and measuring outcomes.
- Increased sales. Consider what your content strategy should look like in order to keep your reps well-informed, with easy access to sales enablement information that allows them to close deals and keep valued customers coming back. Your sales numbers are only as good as the tools that your team uses, so make sure that your content is optimized for sales enablement if this is your goal.
- Increased employee productivity. Your content should enable your reps to find information fast and efficiently. Tailor your content to each rep’s specific needs so that no one is left sifting through hundreds of pages of irrelevant information. Provide the most current and relevant content in an easy-to-search format to minimize time spent hunting for answers.
- Increased employee retention. Employees who are happy with their jobs tend to stick around. In fact, nearly one-half (47%) of employees reported that career advancement opportunities within their organization were very important to their job satisfaction. Increase your employee retention with content that allows them to do their jobs well with minimal stress, and gives them the opportunity to grow their position. Your content repertoire should include professional development materials to help your employees improve advancement opportunities.
- Increased customer satisfaction. When your employees have effective tools at their disposal, your customers have a better customer experience and are more likely to come back. Your L&D content should support a great customer experience by providing up-to-date information that reps can access from anywhere, whether in the middle of a call or face-to-face with a prospect.
Measure the metrics that you need.
No two companies have exactly the same set of goals and needs, so it’s important to know what you want to measure prior to actually collecting any data. Maximize the efficiency of your resources by setting up data collection and analysis for the key performance indicators that you’ve chosen. To get an accurate idea of the ROI you’re realizing from training materials, try measuring metrics such as:
- Engagement. This can be a face-to-face discussion with your employees, or an anonymous survey. Are your employees interested in what they’re learning? Do they feel like it’s worth their time?
- Learning. Embed skill checks within the content to see if your employees are retaining the information as they go.
- Application. Are your employees demonstrating a change in their behaviors as a result of the training? Do they use what they’ve learned while talking to prospects or providing customer service?
- Business impact. This metric often requires input across several departments, such as finance, IT, and HR. It also depends on the goals that you’ve chosen earlier while developing your content (e.g. sales, productivity, or retention).
Meanwhile, re-evaluate your KPIs regularly to make sure that they still reflect your changing goals and needs as a company. The metrics that work for you now may not be necessary in a year or two, so keep your strategy dynamic as your goals evolve.
When you have metrics in front of you on a quarterly basis, it’s easy to evaluate your content and make sure that your L&D strategy accomplishes what you intend. If any aspects fall short, then it’s time to reevaluate and make changes accordingly. Keeping your L&D strategy deliberate ensures that you’re using your valuable training budget wisely, and that you’re doing right by your employees and your customers alike.