The SkillSoft Learning Growth Model

Executive Summary

As organizations enter into more advanced forms of learning, it is critical that they have a plan for future development. The SkillSoft Learning Growth Model is being used by organizations around the world to chart their course toward the most efficient and effective corporate learning possible. The journey to performance- oriented learning is one that requires partnership between learning professionals, business peers and executives. For those on the journey, this model will be a valuable aid.

The SkillSoft Learning Growth Model
The first two stages (Supplemental and Targeted) of the SkillSoft Learning Growth Model make use of generic e-learning content to address the workplace skills that cannot be addressed efficiently by more traditional methods (classroom) or developed quickly using course development tools. Essentially, these two stages establish a baseline deployment of e-learning and allow the learner time to adapt to using new methods.

The third stage (Strategic) is guided by an executive leadership that envisions increased potential of business-focused learning. In this stage executive leadership is needed to move from a more familiar training paradigm to one that is focused on building business-fit learning paths centered on strategic job competencies. This transformational stage requires a great deal of leadership, increased resources and a clear, motivating vision.

The later stages (stages four and five) are more complex in their structure. Success depends heavily on executive sponsorship of performance-focused learning programs that address strategic business demands and human capital goals. It is important to move beyond the training-as-usual mindset and realize that reducing the cost of training will never be a strategic goal. If training is used strategically, it will save time, money and in some cases, the business itself. Because training is one of many factors influencing the performance of a business, it is inherently difficult to isolate and measure the contribution training makes. However, it has also been shown that an investment in the development of people, through training and other programs, can contribute significantly to growth, profitability and return on shareholder investment.

1 Supplemental
The first stage (initiation) begins when e-learning is first introduced to an organization, adding new resources to existing traditional training programs to address pent-up demand.
2 Targeted
This stage starts when e-learning becomes more widely available and sustained efforts are made to manage the learning program within the context of the existing environment.
3 Strategic
This stage becomes the point of transformation when learning is applied to targeted job competencies within key organizational roles, such as sales, customer services, IT and company leadership.
4 Systematic
This stage begins when targeted learning programs and related systems include expanded methods of learning throughout the organization to meet strategic business goals.
5 Optimized
This final stage results in learning resources being available to the entire organization, thus creating a learning utility where each learner has access to learning resources.

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Dorman Woodall, Director of SkillSoft Learning
SkillSoft