Tricordant was asked to conduct a review of the current arrangements for learning in development for the large local authority in England. Like every other local authority, the council had been obliged to reduce its expenditure across-the-board on all of its services. HR as a function and the Learning and Development in particular had endured significant reductions in budgets over a period of more than six years. The Senior leadership team within the authority were keen to understand the impacts of the cuts and indeed what kind of Learning and Development services had survived and were they providing value for money. At a more detailed level, the head of OD and her team wanted to understand what alternatives might be available that would provide a better set of learning outcomes with whatever future budget might be available. They were keen to hear what other similar organisations were doing in this area and what if any examples of “best practice” could influence future arrangements for Learning and Development. The senior leadership team asked Tricordant to produce not only a set of recommendations but also and implementation plan.
The Tricordant Approach
Our approach was influenced by our belief in engaging a wide variety of people representing diverse views across the organisation. We designed and conducted a survey of employees to explore strength of opinion around a range of issues related to Learning and development. The questions on Learning and Development were included as part of a more general annual staff survey, which helped enormously with response rates. Following detailed analysis of the survey we arranged a number of focus groups where we invited groups of employees from across the organisation at different levels of seniority to participate in discussions that we could build up a broad picture of the underlying reasons the responses were received.
Working with the client project team we helped them to assimilate the key themes from the survey and the focus groups and to design some innovative, creative group sessions to explore some of the exciting ideas that emerged and to look at ways that Learning and Development could be developed in the future.
Using our experience from previous clients and an in-depth knowledge of Learning in development theory and practice we worked with the internal project team to build up a series of recommendations that were reviewed and ultimately signed off by the senior leadership team.
The outcomes of the project can be categorised into a number of key themes, please download the full case study for full details