Released this week, the study of 541 organisations finds that coaching by line managers or peers is the learning method most likely to grow over the next two years (65%).
Over half (53%) of respondents expect to see the use of in-house development programmes increase, and on-the-job training (48%) and internal knowledge sharing events (46%) are also expected to become more prevalent.
According to the professional body for HR and people development, the findings suggest a greater focus from organisations on fostering a learning culture.
Many organisations are also increasingly using technology to support learning and development. E-learning courses were the second most-favoured learning technique, with 59% of L&D professionals expecting to use these more over the next two years, after coaching by peers of line managers.
L&D technology again features strongly with the findings that a third of organisations (36%) expect their use of virtual classrooms and webinars to increase and a quarter (25%) think that their use of mobile device-based learning will also increase.
Less-favoured L&D mechanisms in the most recent benchmark study include external development events, such as instructor-led training delivered off the job. Here 30 per cent of respondents expect to use these resources less then in the past. A quarter of respondents also anticipate fewer external conferences, workshops and events (25%) over the next two years.
Smaller organisations with fewer than 50 employees however are not only more likely to use external development events than internal ones, but they’re also more likely to report an increase in use of these over the next two years.
Ruth Stuart, research adviser for L&D at the CIPD, notes,”This year’s L&D survey shows companies becoming much more hands-on in the development of their staff and it’s up to L&D professionals to facilitate different ways of sharing knowledge throughout the organisation in order to achieve long-term sustainable change.
“Collaboration and versatility are key to this. L&D teams need to keep an eye on the future, and understand the evolving landscape whilst continuing to build the professional competencies needed today to drive and sustain organisational success.”
Commenting on the implications of technology, organisational size and multi-generational workforces, Ruth Stuart added, ”These figures show us that one size definitely doesn’t fit all, and it depends entirely on the needs of individual organisations, their workforce profile and their resources as to which L&D initiatives work best.
“However, regardless of size, sector, access to resources or growth prospects, organisations need to make sure their investments in L&D are the right ones and that activity is directed towards improving organisational performance.
“It’s therefore crucial that L&D professionals understand how different learning initiatives connect to people’s everyday roles and measure the impact of any L&D initiative. New generations in the workforce will expect different things from L&D and their careers, so constant evaluation is key. In practice, a blend of methods and a range of delivery channels is important, to really maximise the impact of L&D on the workforce and the business as a whole.”