How to create a winning learning and development strategy

Amazon executive to speak at L&D Summit Canada in April

How to create a winning learning and development strategy

Technology continues to evolve, especially in the corporate L&D (learning and development) space and it’s important for HR to take notice of these trends, says an expert.

“L&D and HR, they go hand-in-hand so whenever there is an L&D intervention, the very first stakeholder we speak to is our HR VP,” says Mohamed Elkhouly, senior director of global learning and development at Amazon in Luxembourg.

Elkhouly will be the keynote speaker in the upcoming Learning and Development Summit Canada, to be held online on April 13.

He will be speaking on developing evidence-informed corporate L&D strategy and he shared some preview thoughts with Canadian HR Reporter about his topic.

“For example, how to use something like employee-generated content, which is what a company can use when you’re expanding and you’re in shortage of capacity to support an organization that is operating across the globe in different locations and different time zones — how can you use AI to generate content like, for example, ChatGPT, that you can use quickly, efficiently?” says Elkhouly.

While plenty of organizations are eager to use new technologies to enhance and deliver learning and education for employees, little thought is given to the strategy, he says.

“It’s evolving very quickly but sometimes we go with the trend, with the technology, with what’s in the market —rather than what we need in the organization.”

“The negative is, which I witnessed personally, when an organization has a big budget for L&D and you don’t link your corporate L&D strategy to the organization or goals: you’re completely disconnected. What happens is that you spend this big budget on lots of technologies or resources,” says Elkhouly.

Importance of HR in L&D

While education is key to such things as employee retention and attraction, it again falls on the HR department to deliver it to workers, while paying attention to the corporate needs, he says.

“HR, they do have access to one of the most important inputs for L&D, which is performance management or performance of the organization in general. They have access to everything related to teaching and learning and development is about people.

“It’s about improving the knowledge and skill; enabling people to do something differently to change their behaviours in one or more aspects of the business in order to achieve better results,” he says.

A strong learning program and strategy can impact as many as three-quarters of employees when thinking about whether or not they wish to remain at the organization, found a survey.

What is the goal?

In the end, HR needs to find ways to justify spending on L&D, says Elkhouly by remembering just why it is being implemented.

“It’s all about ‘Am I connected to the business? And can I defend my strategy… if I go to the board or to the C-suite and discuss my L&D strategy and ask for X millions of dollars of budget for 2023?’ ‘On what basis will I be able to defend this and get my budget?’”

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