The workplace has changed in ways we never expected this year – and that includes how we encourage professional development and training among staff.
For many of us, working from home is a completely new experience and one that has transformed how we envision our work/life balance.
Where people once spent a couple of hours of commuting each day, they’re now clawing back those hours to spend much-needed time with their families during what has undoubtedly been a hard year for everyone.
And, while that has definitely been one of the few positives of the pandemic, other areas, like training and professional development, have taken a knock.
So, why is that?
It could be down to issues with balancing childcare while working from home, or perhaps struggling to get into the right headspace when trying to get focused in a space not built to be an office.
But the biggest issue is probably not having the right support to make it work in the first place – and that’s where your HR team can step in and make things easier.
Here, we’ve outlined some of the key ways to make sure your team is keeping on top of professional development.
Book In A One-to-one
It’s hard to gauge people’s emotions when working remotely, particularly when video calls are limited to whole-team meetings or you go days without touching base with someone.
That’s why regular one-to-one check-ins could be the first step to uncovering issues and finding out why some staff may be struggling with their professional development.
By facing the issue at source and gaining support from the wider team, it can then be easier for workers to start thinking more positively about how to move forward in their work development.
Boost Motivation With A Career Path Plan
The next step is putting in place (or reviewing) a career path plan.
By making sure staff have attainable goals with worthwhile rewards, such as a promotion or pay rise, they’ll no doubt have an increased motivation to dig back into training.
It also works towards boosting confidence and reducing stress, giving people a clear outline of how to move forward, instead of feeling lost or stagnant with little direction on how to grow.
Feedback is an invaluable way to help staff learn from their own work and use that experience to build and grow their skills.
But the key here is to make sure the feedback you give is actually constructive and not something that is going to diminish their confidence in the workplace.
Work with their manager (or perhaps even bring them into the meeting) to create a clear analysis of the worker’s current task load and create actions points for where they can grow, with relevant guidance for training options available.
Put The Right Tools In Place
How can you expect your staff to grow if you don’t have the right tools in place?
You need to ensure that undertaking professional development at home isn’t just an added job on their to-do list, but an exciting opportunity to grasp instead.
So, when they’re less likely to be able to do face-to-face training in the workplace, there needs to be an effective, engaging way to learn that is beyond a three-hour video call with a slide presentation.
The best place to start? A learning management system (LMS).
Using a cloud-based LMS can make a world of difference to your staff, giving them an intuitive and engaging platform that’s not only easy-to-use, but can be accessed from any device at any time.
It’s also an opportunity for you to track their progress and step in to support remotely when they appear to be struggling with certain modules, as well an being able to tailor the content and depth to their specific learning needs.
And if you’re not sure how to help them make that transition to a virtual learning environment, you can find some tips on how to engage your learners right here.
If you’d like to find out more about building your own LMS, get in touch with the buildempire team right here.