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3 Key Findings Revealed in Recent CYPHER Learning Survey on Workplace Development 

CYPHER Learning recently worked with independent surveyor Censuswide to survey 4,000 workers – from owners and C-level executives to entry level employees. 2,000 employees from the United States and 2,000 from the United Kingdom were surveyed to better understand their attitudes toward workplace training and learning development. All findings in the report were validated by Censuswide.

Key findings include:

  1. Executives receive better quality and have more access to training than lower-ranked staff.
  2. Almost every employee surveyed said training is critical for their role with two thirds of those agreeing professional development has given them a competitive advantage.
  3. It is important to modernize development programs as many employees seek more engaging and fun training that is tailored to their job roles.

1. Executives receive better quality and have more access to training than lower-ranked staff

As organizations tackle skills gaps and relentless competition for improved services and products, one thing seems clear: there’s a disparity between employers and employees on workplace development:

  • The survey findings show 88% of business owners and C-level execs are given a choice on when, where and how they do training; compared to 37% of entry level employees.
  • Furthermore, 42% of owners and C-suite executives who had training in the past year said they’d had more training than the previous year – while just 17% of intermediate or entry-level workers said they’d had more training than the previous year.
  • In addition to the amount of training on offer, business owners and C-level executives are almost three times more likely to call training “enjoyable” compared to junior employees and are at least two times more likely to call training “inspiring.” Conversely, 42% of intermediate and junior staff struggle with “boring and unengaging” training; with more than one third (36%) agreeing that workplace L&D has become “death by PowerPoint.”

2. Almost every employee surveyed said training is critical for their role with two thirds of those agreeing professional development has given them a competitive advantage.

Learning and development (L&D) is regarded as a critical factor in achieving business growth, employee satisfaction and successful recruitment.

  • The survey reveals 98% of all workers believe training is important for their role, with two-thirds (64%) agreeing that professional development has given them a competitive advantage.
  • Over three-quarters (76%) are more likely to stay with an employer that prioritizes training, with 71% agreeing that “a company that doesn’t invest in training doesn’t care about its employees.”
  • Despite this, almost one fifth of all workers (17%) have not received any training at all in the last 12 months. Of those that have had training, some fail to see the benefits:
  • One-in-twenty (5%) say they have received no benefit from training.
  • 31% believe they are not prepared for future skills challenges.
  • A third (34%) forgot their training within a month of completing it.
  • It’s perhaps unsurprising that over a quarter (26%) of respondents see current training as a waste of money, offering no business value.

3. It is important to modernize development programs as many employees seek more engaging and fun training that is tailored to their job roles.

Analyzing what learners want from their training reveals that most use development to improve job performance. This is most likely because the higher that employees climb the corporate ladder, the more opportunity there is for tailored, personalized training. Findings include:

  • The top three desired outcomes include: improving their skills (45%), increasing their performance at work (45%) and driving up the quality of their work (39%).
  • When looking at how L&D efforts could support them in these goals, 41% of workers that have received training in the last year call for it to be more tailored to their job roles. Furthermore, 39% believe development should be more fun and engaging, with only 15% of respondents saying training they have received was fun. Introducing gamification elements, as well as technology like AR and VR, would make training more fun, according to two-thirds (67%) of workers.

Summary

Training is in high demand across many workplaces today, and employees know that training and development provides them with a competitive edge, but as this report shows, there’s still work to be done: with executives receive better quality and have more access to training than lower-ranked staff, and the important need for modernization and personalization of learning.

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