Technology such as artificial intelligence, social learning, gamification and big data are radically changing the way companies develop the skills of the UK workforce. Employers, training providers and individuals will need to adapt to survive.
The changing expectations of employers and their employees has led to a wave of innovation in the corporate training sector, creating a flow of investment and M&A deals. This is set to accelerate further over the next few years as training providers seek scalable technologies and critical mass.
We look at how the corporate training market is evolving and how eLearning is changing the learning landscape. We examine the key technologies driving learner engagement and the likely impact on future training business models.
Upskilling your workforce
The training sector is one of the fastest-growing and dynamic areas of the UK economy, fueled by a growing private sector role in delivering skills education and apprenticeships, along with increased corporate buying power, particularly with the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy. Many traditional training providers are broadening their service offerings in response to these changes, leading to a very fragmented market.
Companies increasingly need to measure the impact of their learning and development strategies. Employees want access to the latest personalised eLearning tools anytime, anywhere, but still value face-to-face interaction. Training providers that can best match these changing employer and employee needs are likely to gain a major competitive edge.
Using technology to give you a competitive edge
This fast-changing landscape offers a vast array of technologies – from bite-sized micro-learning to game-based mobile apps, and from cloud-based learning analytics to AI-driven user recommendations. The winners will be those training providers and their customers who can adapt to rapid change. In a highly competitive sector, this will require smart strategic thinking, shrewd investment and an absolute commitment to quality and return on training investment.
“Technological and social change is disrupting the workplace, shifting to the need for lifelong learning. Employers, training providers and individuals will need to adapt to survive” says Keely Woodley, Partner and Head of Human Capital.
The government has committed over £75 million to artificial intelligence (AI) research, another £100 million for an extra 8,000 science teachers and a further £76 million to boost digital skills training. This highlights the importance of technology, as well as the key role employers and training providers will play in addressing the skills gap.
It is critical that training providers keep apace of regulatory and political change, explore how technology can support continuous learning aligned more closely to personal skills gap, and build a network of trusted advisors to call on to shape and challenge strategy.
“Technology holds the key to creating a dynamic and agile skills market” says Victoria Giles, Associate Director, Corporate Finance.