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A place for research and insights into digital-based L&D initiatives

piles of learning and development research

At the end of last year, I made a one-word resolution: “new”.

For my organization, I was thinking about “new” as in customers. For the L&D community, I was thinking about “new” as in launching a new product (stay tuned, it’s coming in November!). And for this blog, I was thinking about “new” in terms of research.

Recently, I began taking a look through some of the reports and research that’s been compiled by the UK-based organization, Towards Maturity. If you’re looking for insights, research and data around digital-based L&D initiatives, you ought to check out their site.

A report that they released in July around compliance training caught my eye. The report is entitled Going Beyond Ticking the Box.

Towards Maturity

It’s a short read – 10 pages (but even shorter when you account for graphs, charts and white space), but has some interesting findings such as:

  • 46% of organizations report that their people find compliance learning dull and boring
  • 31% of learners openly admit to not applying what they learned in a mandatory compliance course

Not surprisingly, the folks at Towards Maturity recommend that compliance training can be made more engaging and lead to increased learner retention if there is a broader use of more innovative design features to bring valuable content to life. Three design features that more innovative organizations applied to compliance training were:

  • Storytelling
  • Spaced learning
  • Learning scenarios based on real situations

Compliance training can be a thorn in the side of L&D departments who are asked to create it as well as a thorn in the side of every learner who is required to take it. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Whether you’re working to design training in an online environment or an in-person classroom, design elements that incorporate real situations and real stories bring the content to life and make the learning more compelling. Of course, these design elements can take more time to put together than simply slapping together some slides with policies and procedures. With more development time comes more development costs, which can sometimes be a difficult sale to management who just wants the compliance training out there so that a box can be checked.

Making a business case for investing in more innovative training sometimes relies on research and hard numbers. Using research and reports by organizations such as Towards Maturity can be helpful when you’re looking to make the case to invest more resources into a training program.

We’re coming upon budget season and L&D professionals around the world will soon be trying to justify investments for their 2020 initiatives. Where do you turn when you’re looking for numbers, data and research to help make your case for obtaining resources for your next training project? Let’s read about where you find numbers in the Comment section!


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