Workplace learning makes employees smarter. But did you know it also makes them more engaged and loyal?
We surveyed more than 2,000 people at companies across the United States to find out how company culture and values relate to:
Employees want more than a culture of free food. (They want free learning too)
Among the elements of company culture we studied, free meals had the least effect on engagement and loyalty. Workplace learning, on the other hand, did the most to align personal and organizational values - and that's where engagement and loyalty come from.
Almost 100 percent of employees at companies with a strong culture of learning reported feeling engaged at work and loyal to their company.
A culture of learning = a culture of leadership
Less than half (44.4%) of employees we surveyed said they're actively being developed for future leadership positons. But most (60.6%) said leaders in their company are promoted from within.
How can you help your future leaders develop the skills they need to succeed?
Learn more about how a strong culture of learning can help lay the groundwork of success - for your employees, your leaders, your company, and your bottom line.
Technology has changed the way today's (and tomorrow's) workers communicate, collaborate, learn, and live.
By 2020, baby boomers, Gen X, millennials, and Gen Z will all be sharing the same workspace and Keurig machines. While their differences run deeper than age and an espresso-filled swimming pool, there is hope.
Training is more vital than ever to organizational success, and today’s L&D and HR pros need an arsenal of tools to empower a diverse group of workers.
From onboarding to ongoing training, your L&D programs MUST be:
Relevant / not one-size-fits-all
Designed for advancement
Is your relationship status “disengaged”?
Organizations with high engagement scores outperform the market at an alarming rate, even during tough times. But only 34% of U.S. employees are engaged at work.
Boomers are heading out. Boomerangs are coming back (and back and back).
With flighty workers zigging and zagging around the career ladder, many of them are sure to return to your office. Create hiring and training processes to accommodate this new phenom, and even gain some competitive intel.
The millennials have landed, and the workplace is never looking back.
People born between 1981 and 2000 are all grown up and they’re taking the workplace by storm. More and more, baby boomers are retiring and millennials are on track to take their place as the dominant generation, making up 75% of the workforce by 2025.
The largest and most diverse generation in US history has more to offer the working world than just volume. The good news is that millennials are very driven, but employers need to step up their training and development programs to grab their attention and their loyalty.
For millennials, it’s not about entitlement. It’s about engagement.
You’ve heard the hype that millennials expect a corner office by their first year out of college. But this idea of entitlement isn’t quite on the mark. In a recent study, training and development ranked 300% higher than cash bonuses for millennials. Millennials not only seek continuous improvement and development, but two-thirds expect their employers to provide them with the opportunities.
Close the technology gap or get left behind.
According to a recent study by Instructure, creators of the modern learning and training platform Bridge, 54% of managers feel millennials are only somewhat prepared to contribute to a company right when they start. On the other hand, millennials are eager to learn and engage. More than 20% of this Generation feel their employer-provided technologies are pretty terrible. Thankfully, this “largest generation” happen to be very ambitious, but only if the training is on their terms.
Zero tolerance for outdated training & technology.
Millennials are the first digital natives. When you grow up using computers and cell phones while you’re still in diapers, you have a whole different perspective of technology and its role in everyday life. The “Lunch and Learn” presentations and half-day sessions used in training today are about as old school as dial-up to this generation. As difficult as it is to imagine, PowerPoint isn’t popular with this crowd either.
It’s time to get onboard with their lifestyle:
Go mobile — give them the flexibility they want, combined with the tech they can’t live without. Nearly all millennials are permanently attached to their smartphones: four out of five even sleep with a phone or have it beside them.
Get social — include elements for social sharing and engagement. 70% of millennials have friended a manager or co-worker on Facebook.
Stay bite sized — millennials switch between tasks up to 27 times per hour. That doesn’t give you much time (around 2.2 seconds) to get your message across. Think short videos (five minutes or less) and resource libraries where they can guide their own studies.
Foster collaboration — 88% of millennials would rather collaborate than compete at work.
Give feedback (and fast) — 95% work harder when they know where their work is going. Remember, this is the instant gratification generation, so provide same-day feedback if possible.
Set the framework, then set them loose — tell them what’s expected of them, and get out of their way. This generation is all about discovery, curiosity, and maintaining control of their own destiny.
Don’t expect a work 9-to-5,
Millennials know what drives them and what will push them out the door. 88% need a “positive culture” or they’ll start looking elsewhere. And, even if they find meaning in their work, most expect to stay in a job for less than three years. Side projects and hobbies are second nature, and 78% of millennials feel that their “hustle” could take them on a different path, so it’s worth the extra effort. Essentially, their multitasking ability and short attention spans carry over into their professional lives.
Why bother if they aren’t
going to stick around?
Because their short attention spans can give way to great feats in multitasking. Millennials use technology not only to connect, but to be more efficient. Plus, they’ll be the majority of your workforce soon.
Millennials are here to stay, so you better engage them.
Now that you know just how different this generation is from its predecessors in the workplace, it’s up to you to tailor learning and training programs to meet their needs.
Bridge is a modern, sleek Learning Management System. Bridge measures and improves employee sentiment, alignment, and knowledge to support the goals of your company. In a nutshell, it gets everyone the tools they need to do a great job.
But what exactly is employee engagement? Employee engagement is a combination of being invested in your work; it’s knowing what your company’s goals are, and having the tools and the drive to contribute to your organization effectively.
At Instructure, we believe there’s a better way to engage your employees.
It’s not about maintaining a morale level just high enough to avoid a mass exodus.
It’s not about spending whole workdays watching compliance videos that are forgotten as soon as they’re over.
And it’s not about trying to motivate employees with yearly reviews and hopes of small cost-of-living increases.
A lot can happen in a year, so the dialogue between managers and employees should be ongoing. That way, problems are solved instead of stewed upon, people get the tools needed to do their jobs better, and the company thrives.
Only when employees feel safe enough, valued enough, and empowered enough can innovation occur. Without employee engagement, you aren't headed toward innovation, you're headed for extinction.
You can’t scare your employees into caring
What do you want most out of your employees? Productivity? Quality customer service? A positive impact on your bottom line? Then you need engaged employees.
But are you still using “carrot-and-stick motivators” (rewards and punishments)? It’s time to rethink those methods. In his bestselling book “Drive,” Daniel Pink says there’s a gap between what science knows about motivation and what business knows. What are the key characteristics that motivate your workforce?
Autonomy - "Let me do my job my way"
Mastery - "Help me learn and grow"
Purpose - "Make me feel like what I'm doing matters"
Is your business ignoring these motivators?
Engage your employees now, before someone else does.
Continue training your top performers or you could soon be training their replacements. Focus on learning as a key tool to improve employee engagement.
Access to learning and training opportunities is the second-most valued form of recognition among employees surveyed by Quantum Workforce across a variety of industries, experience levels and demographics. It even outranked receiving a spontaneous cash bonus!
In a nutshell: help your employees grow as professionals and they will help your business grow. Keep them engaged and on board with these best practices:
Focus on millennials’ learning styles
Provide time for stretch assignments
Build a culture of learning
Train your leaders
Training shouldn’t feel like torture
We’ve all heard groans when training and development is mentioned. But it doesn’t have to be that way. This is especially important for the ever-growing numbers of millennials in the workforce. By 2025, millennials are expected to make up 75 percent of the global workforce.
Are you still making employees watch that two-hour video on sexual harassment or safety compliance? Millennials will check out before you even press “play.” Engage them the way they live, work, and interact:
Your content must speak ‘TwitChatGramTube’ (aka millennial)
Make it bite-sized.Millennials are accustomed to 140-character limits, 10-second disappearing videos, and the ability to fast forward through commercials.
Make it social.Eighty-four percent of millennials are social media users.
Make it visual.Over 65 percent of millennials prefer to learn visually. Beyond millennials, visual content still rules the day. Ninety percent of the information our brains process is visual, and our brain is able to process visuals 60,000 times faster than text.
Studies prove that engaged employees drive greater productivity, quality, and profitability. Yet employee engagement is at abysmal levels throughout the United States. And workers under 25 rate professional development as their number-one driver of engagement.
The message is clear: it’s time to move learning and development to the front burner and start finding ways to make employee training easier, more effective, interesting, and intuitive. Have we convinced you? Want to learn more?
Bridge is a modern learning and engagement platform created to drive a compelling learning experience, while helping employees and companies grow.