Productivity: What It Means in L&D & How To Maintain It
“Being busy does not mean being productive.”
Hurts a little, doesn’t it?
Hate to shatter that illusion folks, but there’s a lot of truth to this – especially when it comes to L&D.
Before we get into the how and why of ‘productivity’, let’s first take a look at what we mean by ‘productivity’ in an L&D context.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, productivity is “the effectiveness of effort, especially in industry, as measured in terms of the rate of output per unit of input.”
From an L&D perspective, the input and output components of productivity are loosely twofold; with one relating to day-to-day job performance, and the other to skills development.
Both require consistent attention and effort to produce a desirable output, leaving you with the simple task of harmoniously balancing the two and enjoying an exceptional career trajectory as a result.
According to research, L&D departments are the key to resolving productivity in the workplace, with the Office for National Statistics stating that productivity levels in UK employers continue to stagnate. The survey found that 79% of managers said skills shortages were impacting productivity, and 63% increasing productivity was a key priority to them over the next 12 months.
The Enemy of Productivity
It’s no secret – L&D opportunities in the workplace are the key to unlocking the potential of employees within any organization. Employers instinctively know a skilled workforce is a more productive one, yet Towards Maturity’s benchmark study indicates that while 94% of organizations are seeking to increase on-the-job productivity, only 31% actually think they’re achieving.
As a result, modern organizations are now seeing a need for responsive, agile and iterative learning, with L&D opportunities helping to bridge the gaps in the skills of their workforce in order to enhance performance within specific roles.
Productivity is a valued, key metric for high-performing organizations, but one that is often overlooked by SMEs. And due to its subjective nature, the productivity of your workforce is sometimes hard to track/measure, creating even more of a barrier for organizations implementing L&D.
Boosting Productivity in Your Organization
We get it – boosting productivity among your workforce is not always an easy task.
Especially as a lack of motivation is still among the biggest problems faced by L&D departments when encouraging learners to engage in learning opportunities.
But today, next-generation elearning tools, those utilizing data, analytics and adaptive learning offer a far more effective approach to cultivating a productive workforce than previously available.
We’ve come up with a list of a few simple ways to proactively cultivate a culture of productivity within your organization using next-generation learning tools:
Time Tracking Tools
A lot of the time, productivity refers to how efficiently workers are accomplishing their job-specific tasks. Time tracking tools can be used to monitor the time spent on a certain tasks, making employees more aware of where their time is spent.
Time tracking tools can be used to help empower employees to become efficient and productive by measuring and documenting the hours worked. They are also one of the best metrics for measuring productivity within your organization by logging employees working hours, breaks, attendances and leaves.
Project Management Tools
Using visual enhancers, such as Gantt charts, as well as time and resource tracking tools, Project Management tools allow employees to commit to project delivery, ensuring a more efficient process.
Enabling employees to set more realistic milestones and deadlines, as well as keeping all your team’s members focused on your deliverables, Project Management software equips employees with the tools they need to better prioritize their deadlines and workload.
Team Communication Tools
For any organization, communication is vital to ensuring a smooth running of day-to-day business.
By implementing a communication tool between teams and departments, employers make it possible for team members to easily exchange data and discuss corporate operations in real time.
They ensure the seamless and effective running of all systems and projects, with the additional benefit of file sharing and collaborative working for a more efficient day-to-day.
They ensure everything is running seamlessly and as effectively as it should, with the ability to file share and collaborate more efficiently on certain projects.
Learning Management Systems/Learning Experience Platforms
This last one is probably our favourite – I wonder why?!
In all seriousness though, the implementation of an LMS or LXP can help to boost productivity in more ways than one.
The LXP centers on Professional Development which aims to bridge the gaps in the skills of your workforce, ensuring their skillset is as refined as possible so they better perform within their current role.
The LXP facilitates a continued Learning & Development plan for all employees, and uses data and analytics integrations, such as a Learning Record Store, to help organizations evaluate learning performance with metrics and skill gap analytics.
For both business needs and the career development of your workforce, an effective learning solution plays an integral part in promoting a culture of productivity within your organization. Providing access to these opportunities is the first step you can take in ensuring your workforce is as skilled and as efficient as they can be.