Studies show that making learning a priority can positively affect your organization in a number of ways. Employee engagement improves and there is higher retention and satisfaction. Business processes also become more efficient and streamlined, resulting in a higher ROI and long-term success. Research from Bersin & Associates indicates that companies with learning cultures have higher financial returns over a 10-20 year period. To achieve these desired outcomes with learning, your organization needs to encourage continuous learning and create a supportive environment.
When learning is a part of your company culture and supported from the top down, employees can make learning a frequent part of their routine. According to a recent blog post by Ladan Nikravan, from Chief Learning Officer, “creating a culture focused on continuous education and skill building can help an organization adapt during unanticipated dilemmas.”
We are pleased to bring you a guest blog post today from Kieran King, our Global Director of Loyalty Strategy.
I am frequently asked why SkillSoft’s clients are so loyal.For those who may not be aware, SkillSoft has been ranked #1 in customer loyalty by the world’s largest custom research company, TNS, for three consecutive years.TNS doesn’t just benchmark learning companies.Rather, TNS compares SkillSoft’s client survey responses to every software and IT company in its database ranging from $100M-$120B in revenues.
Most anticipate that the secret to SkillSoft’s high loyalty level will involve some form of a repurchasing histogram, complex spreadsheet, or sophisticated causal analysis.It’s actually quite simple:
1.the widest content cloud,
2.the best customer support,
3.the strongest sustainability.
Content Cloud.Content licensing has gone in the same direction as the IT cloud computing concept for the following reasons:
Buy versus Build - Unless you have infinite resource capacity and funds to develop learning content yourself, it makes economical sense to buy from a provider whose main business is building content.SkillSoft’s core mission has always been content.Because SkillSoft offers a large library of eLearning courseware content that covers a broad range of topics, there is consistency in the quality of the instructional design as well as the user interface. These two factors tend to drive increased learner acceptance and the propensity for learners to come back.
Less Operational Overhead - As with IT cloud infrastructures, most corporations also find it far more efficient to leverage a hosted solution because of the operational efficiencies it provides.The Software as a Service savings eliminate the hardware and software investments as well as the IT staffing required of an in-house solution.
Corporate Agility - Our world is also increasingly more complex and the pace of change continues to compound, making it very difficult to forecast what skills a workforce may need. This month’s quote from CLO Magazine Editor, Norm Kamikow, sums it up well, “To stay in fighting shape, learning organizations have to be agile, quick thinking and oriented towards both revolutionary and evolutionary workforce development. That means flexible delivery, as well as learning that is responsive to the needs and demands of a diverse, dispersed and dynamic global workforce. It means also arming and empowering the workforce to react to change with alacrity and intelligence and decisively win whatever competitive battles come along.”
In such an environment, it’s an imperative to partner with a supplier that has the widest depth and breadth of topic coverage to address the uncertainly of dynamic skill requirements.That is also why most of our clients choose to subscribe to a library of eLearning modules where the learner can take just what they need when they need it.Of course a learner doesn’t need to consume thousands of resources…they only need one resource, every time they need one, and the probability of having the right resource is increased with access to a rich repository.
Customer Support.By a wide margin, SkillSoft invests in client support more than any other eLearning provider.The services we deliver ensure every program is poised to successfully achieve business results.SkillSoft has over 500 client service professionals dedicated to customer success before, during and after implementation. One of the most highly regarded elements of SkillSoft’s service team is the Learning Consultant.The Learning Consultant provides guidance related to program design, technical planning, marketing, administrative management, and measurement strategy.Competitors to SkillSoft will often claim to offer a range of support services that sound familiar, but no other supplier offers the number of personnel, depth of expertise, and industry experience that SkillSoft does. Our clients continually tell us what a difference our services make, and it shows in our 96% customer service satisfaction rating.
Strong sustainability.While the effects of the economic recession may be subsiding somewhat, the importance of partnering with a sustainable learning supplier will continue.SkillSoft’s experience, leading position in learning innovation, and financial stability are more important factors than ever before.SkillSoft’s dependable and steady leadership team, coupled with tenured field staff, provide clients with an unparalleled level of reassurance.When SkillSoft was acquired by a highly rated private investment consortium in May, SkillSoft’s sustainability was more deeply reinforced.As a private company, we can accelerate our aggressive R&D in areas that have always been paramount to clients as well as explore peripheral markets that can bring enhanced value.
In closing, SkillSoft feels very fortunate to have earned our clients’ confidence time and time again.We remain committed to focus on the aspects that have made the most difference - content, service, and business viability.To hear directly from our clients, click here to view a set of customer video interviews.
I have already acknowledged an addiction to Twitter. And, I am happy to write that I have found yet another reason to love the site. Twitter allows me access to events that I cannot attend.
The # sign is a powerful thing in Twitter-ville. It creates a dynamic page with whatever word(s) follow it, allowing people to virtually gather and weigh in on a topic. #sscafe09 gave the world access to SkillSoft’s Cafe held in Orlando in September. By following that event on Twitter (via searching for that ‘phrase,’) I was able to keep up with the news – SkillSoft is poised to launch the SkillSoft Leadership Advantage and showed a sneak peak of upcoming inGenius – and get a feel for what people were discussing: the power of Web 2.0, the value of social networking in a learning environment and the power that collaboration can have on learning.
I was also able to keep up with the CLO Symposium. Imagine that. I’m sitting at my desk in Nashua, NH, and simply typing #CLOsymposium allowed me to be a ‘bird’ on the wall (sorry, I had to) at the event in Colorado.
The best use of this tool is when multiple people at an event tweet about it together – all using the powerful # sign to allow other people to view their collective wisdom about an event or a topic within the event. It might take a while for people to catch on to this – but it’s a great way to bring an event home to your co-workers in real time. Let’s all meet virtually at the next event and give each other a chance to read what a little birdy said.
I’ve just spent three great days in Colorado Springs attending CLO’s 2009 Fall Symposium on Peak Performance: Pushing Your Enterprise to the Top. It was a great chance to spend time with top training and development professionals from around the country and hear their thoughts on the issues and concerns that are foremost in their minds. I thought I’d take this opportunity to share some thoughts that I took away from the event.
If you’ve never been to Colorado Springs, it’s beautiful. It’s hard to really grasp the beauty of the Rockies till you’ve seen them up close.
When it comes to training solutions, one size doesn’t fit all. It can be tempting some times to look for one solution that you can use with all of your learners to meet all of their needs. While there are many great solutions available to choose from - and many can serve multiple purposes - you definitely still need to match the solution with your audience and their specific learning styles and goals.
Leadership fundamentals haven’t changed all that much. While some competencies are becoming more important – flexibility, communication – in response to today’s dynamic and more multi-generational and cultural work place, the core leadership skills remain the same. Leaders still need to provide vision, direction, and motivation.
As more companies recognize that a robust leadership pipeline is fundamental to long term success, they are looking at new ways to make leadership training available to more people (to build the pipeline) and with greater frequency (to maximize impact). While the competencies haven’t changed all that much, people are looking for new ways to teach those core leadership competencies and are turning to technology-based solutions as an economical solution to reach more people.
What are your thoughts on the future of leadership development? Or, if you were lucky enough to attend, what did you take away from CLO’s great recent event?