Learning, what is it good for?

David Wilson, Founder and CEO at Fosway Group, Europe’s #1 HR industry analyst, joins us to share his thoughts on how learning contributes directly to your customers’ experience – and ultimately your organisation’s bottom line results.



If you break it down, learning should be a key foundation of any organisation’s success. Hitting sales targets, increasing customer satisfaction scores, driving repeat purchases, building brand reputation and maintaining customer loyalty are all business-critical goals, and what helps to achieve them? Well, for the most part, it’s your people, and in many of those instances above – your front-line staff. And if they’re not prepared with the right skills and knowledgeable about the right information at the right time, then they won’t be able to deliver the type of customer experience that really counts.

Learning now has a key strategic opportunity

Organisational learning is operating against a backdrop of massive change. The demographics of the workforce are changing with older people making up more of the working population than ever before, along with millennials making waves and Gen Z already bringing up the rear. They are bringing with them changing working habits and expectations. More and more expect to be able to work in a technology-enabled environment, especially mobile, with an increasing focus on collaboration and diversity. And they want to learn – with 69% rating their opportunities to develop both personally and professionally as their top motivator to join an organisation.


Plus, digital transformation is happening in over 90% of organisations today. With around 70% in the process of digitally transforming their approach to learning. And the investment is growing. Of all the functional areas of HR, learning and development is forecast to have the most consistent ongoing investment over the coming 12 months.

But in our 2019 Digital Learning Realities research, over half of the 1000+ learning professionals surveyed told us they do not believe their current learning platforms are fit for the modern workforce. And shockingly, only 15% even attempt to measure the impact of their digital learning today.


Measuring impact is hard to do. 65% of learning professionals still use employee participation and completion rates as their main measurement. But this data shows nothing in terms of how learning can positively impact an organisation or its performance and key results. Getting away from this old mindset is a tough habit to break, but when we step back to think about those front-line staff again and where they deliver impact, suddenly things become clearer:

  • Call centre staff dealing quickly with complaints
  • Sales teams delivering add-on sales to existing customers
  • Hospitality staff gaining great reviews from travellers
  • Customer service representatives contributing to an increase in CSAT levels
  • Net Promoter Scores (NPS) going up
  • Customer retention levels increasing

Learning has the potential to impact all of these key metrics across your business through helping your people deliver a valuable and enjoyable customer experience. Acknowledging this and shifting your mindset towards thinking about creating impactful learning experience and measuring how they actually impact performance is part one. Learning is good for…quite a lot actually as it turns out.

In the second part of this series, we’ll explore just how to power faster, flexible, more modern and more valuable learning for your people (and you don’t need to wait until your digital transformation is done to get started!)