Organisations are leaning into learning in a digital world

Benny Ramos, Director, Customer Success, Skillsoft, discusses how learning has played a central role in how organisations react to the pandemic.
By: | October 11, 2021

The future of learning will see a continued acceleration of digital transformation and a renewed focus on equity and inclusivity, said Benny Ramos, Director, Customer Success, Skillsoft. Writing in a blog post, he added, “Agile will be on the rise, and not just for software development. And, data analytics, data visualisation, and accountability will matter more than ever.”

When it comes to the APAC region, a learning disruption based on digital transformation and evolving customer expectations was already occurring. The pandemic, said Ramos, accelerated digital transformation by as much as five years. “That meant requests for learning tools and training in distance communication and virtual leadership across the region grew from moderate interest to huge demand.”

In Asia, offsite learning opportunities for high potentials and high performers have long been the preference. However, the advent of the pandemic has seen a need for programmes to be scalable and flexible, and organisations began to realise that investing in leadership development was equivalent to investing in business continuity, Ramos pointed out.

Looking at countries specifically, Skillsoft found that businesses in Singapore and Malaysia are looking for specific skills in the shape of big data, data visualisation, and storytelling, with a very high emphasis on productivity and collaboration.

Ramos added, “A large focus of Asian governments is on the digital transformation of business to leverage human resources due to the lack of other natural resources and agriculture that can be monetized – and investment in people is always a good thing.”

In Australia and New Zealand, structure, consistency, frameworks, and assessment are key for organisations, who see high value in certifications and understanding skills as currency. “Organsiations want to have as many certified people within their ranks as possible to stay marketable, to say ‘We’re ISO certified’, or ‘We have so many PM certified folks,’” said Ramos.

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There is also a high level of interest in reskilling and upskilling employees, as well as a considerable emphasis on morale and engagement. To meet organisations’ needs to balance process versus people, Skillsoft is working with customers in Australia and New Zealand more holistically, including providing learning content on creativity and innovation, ways to boost engagement remotely, and an emphasis on simplifying organisational complexities.

Looking into the future

While remote, or hybrid work continues to provide challenges for organisations, employees have appreciated the greater flexibility that their employers have demonstrated, said Ramos, who highlighted that Skillsoft found that only 11% of employees want to return to pre-pandemic office norms.

“There is more than just a digital transformation occurring. There appears to be a new social contract between organisations and individuals all around the world,” Ramos highlighted. “In North America, Asia, and beyond, expectations are that employers will afford the workforce greater flexibility and autonomy, while investing in holistic employee experiences with opportunities for learning and growth at the centre.”