Improved ROI

Strategic L&D: Eight Steps to Improved ROI

Why do training initiatives fail? This was the topic of our recent breakfast forum, and the incentive for us to define eight steps to improved ROI.

A lack of management commitment, no clear L&D strategy, and relevance of training are among the most commonly cited reasons for training being ineffective. On the flip side, developing learning journeys was one of the best methods and tools for improving training ROI.

When we take these and other research findings into consideration, it seems pretty clear that a substantial proportion of L&D practitioners do not see, or feel that they are seen, as a strategic contributor to the business. It also seems that many do not know how to position the strategic significance of learning and development within the business.


Strategic L&D: Eight Steps to Improved ROI

Step 1

Be patient and think long term

Training is short-term and often ‘one-off’. however learning is a continuous process. You need to develop a clearly defined and articulated learning and development strategy from which everything should evolve.

Step 2

Begin with the end in mind

There needs to be complete clarity on the learning objectives. Only when KPAs and KPIs have been defined in a competency matrix, will you be in a position to define learning outcomes. This will require a detailed training needs analysis.

Step 3

Training is not the only solution

Highly effective learning solutions employ a variety of different learning strategies, methods and tools. Their correct use will provide learners with a more effective learning journey. Think pre, current and post learning!

Step 4

Gain commitment from all stakeholders

It is imperative that you gain commitment from the learner, their manager, and the senior management team. Get them all to sign a learning contract with clearly defined deliverables.

Step 5

Make it real

We know from experience, learning must be realistic, and aligned with business processes. Don’t waste your learner’s time, that of their managers, and the organisation’s resources on training that cannot be applied.

Step 6

Make It enjoyable

The more enjoyable the learning, the more engaged and committed learners will be. If you have commitment from all stakeholders and make it real this will be much easier to do. Ensure the instructional design is right!

Step 7

Hold your provider accountable

Your provider needs to be held accountable for deliverables. This can only be achieved if you allow them to partner with you in the design, development and delivery of learning solutions.

Step 8

Don’t ignore the first seven steps!

Don’t allow senior management to treat learning and development as a silver bullet. If you want to be viewed as a strategic contributor to the business, it’s imperative that you follow these steps.