Posted: 16 December 2021

The last two years have certainly encouraged many people to re-evaluate their priorities and life choices. This has been largely prevalent in how people now choose to work and the flexibility many people now seek from their employer.  For learning and development teams this presents a great opportunity (or challenge) in how you have to potentially change your working conditions and what options you give to your team for ongoing growth and career development.

After speaking to several L&D colleagues and training delegates, we discuss what we believe will be the top five trends for 2022:

  1. Hybrid working = a need for more virtual training

For the many companies that were forced to send their workforce home during the pandemic, they learned that not only did their business survive but many people thrived working from home. Having the flexibility was key to employees.  With some companies starting to return to normality, being able to connect with colleagues a couple of times per week in the office but have the flexibility to work from home and save time on the commute has definitely shown to improve productivity.

Training modules have to therefore adapt with new working practices.  Allowing colleagues to access training material online to continue their own personal development will be a key retention factor moving forward.

  1. Employee wellbeing needs to be front and centre to help your recruitment and retention

Hybrid working has been a game changer for many businesses and really put a focus back onto having a work/life balance.  Not everyone has loved hybrid and home working. Millennials and those at the start of their professional career have missed face-to-face mentoring and interaction with colleagues. Graduate recruits have missed the opportunity to meet their fellow cohorts and to network with the teams that will influence their career moving forward.  On an ongoing basis new managers and senior leaders need to be equipped with the tools and skills to motivate a remote working force and adjust their management styles accordingly.

At Ashorne Hill, we have a number of training products to help support employee wellbeing.  Our Digital First Graduate training programmes have ensured graduates have been able to continue to develop the core skills that they’ll need to be a future leader and not hinder their own personal development.  Our leadership modules for first time managers and new managers of managers equip those ambitious individuals who are climbing the career ladder with the skills and direction they need to manage a hybrid workforce and continue to motivate and care for their team.

  1. Training programmes – one size doesn’t fit all

As a training provider, we quickly pivoted our training modules at the start of the pandemic to offer more virtual training and meet the demands of our clients.  In a post-pandemic era there is not one training rule that suits everyone and businesses need to appreciate what works best for them and for their teams.

Some need to return to the classroom to maximise face-to-face training. Others have found the blended approach combining training on the go with face-to-face catch-ups has helped improve how quickly teams develop and has improved productivity.  There are some businesses that will continue to rely on Digital First programmes.  Businesses need to understand what training solution best suits each individual in their business and tailor a programme to them.

  1. Collaboration, face-to-face and community has a key place in training engagement

Graduate course feedback highlighted quickly to us that the one thing that new cohorts missed most during the last year or so was networking and interaction with their fellow graduates.  Studies showed that where tools were in place for collaboration and classroom interactions, that graduates would be more productive and put in more independent learning.

At Ashorne Hill we created community groups and used other collaboration tools to ensure that graduates had a forum to reach out to their colleagues and network where face-to-face wasn’t possible.  In 2022, where digital training will continue to grow, businesses need to put in place forums and areas where trainees can collaborate and discuss.

  1. There will be lots of opportunity for training content providers

With new hybrid working policies and the need for employees to be able to digest content on the move and on their terms, many companies may need to re-evaluate their training provision in 2022.  There will be a lot of opportunity for forward thinking training providers to capitalise.  At Ashorne Hill, we’re in an incredibly unique position in that we are one of the only providers across the UK that can tailor training programmes to what clients may be looking for.

Our management and leadership modules can be taken off the shelf and used as digital only modules.  They can also be tweaked and tailored to a client’s brand or individual needs.  These same modules can also be combined into a blended training programme combining digital content on the move with virtual classroom sessions or face-to-face.

If you need expert facilitation to run alongside your training programme, our team of L&D experts are on hand to run modules and courses for you either virtually or face-to-face.  What’s more that face-to-face training can either take place in one of our 40 training spaces at our venue in the Midlands or we’ll come to you.  Whatever works best for your team.  We’re also more than happy for you to take our modules in our venue but use a different facilitator.

To find out more about the learning solutions provided by Ashorne Hill, click here