The Importance of a Robust Learning and Development Function and The Benefits It Can Bring to Your Business


Training, Learning and Development functions are an essential part of a successful business and a great employer. It’s important for a business to deliver training to new employees joining the business and to provide ongoing training and development opportunities to existing employees to either support their career growth, self-development or upskilling in changing markets.

A business that invests heavily in their learning and development function, not only supports employee development, but it also supports increased productivity and efficiencies, having a positive impact on business success, higher profits and increased perception of the brand.

Learning and development is about creating the right culture and environment for individuals and organisations to learn and grow – CIPD.

The importance of the L&D function and the benefits

Having a well-established and effective learning and development function as a business can bring with it many benefits, not only for the organisation, but for individual employee development, engagement, retention and attraction.

With changing landscapes and advancements in technology, businesses need to ensure they focus on upskilling existing staff to allow them to move forward with innovation and obtain the skills most in demand by organisations.

What are the benefits of a strong learning and development function?

Opportunity for career and personal development

When a business facilitates a comprehensive and supportive training and development function, it increases the number of development opportunities available internally for employees. If employees develop their skills internally, they can move forward with their career within the organisation without seeking opportunities at a new employer.

Combats skills and knowledge gaps

According to a recent workplace report by LinkedIn, 89% of Learning and Development professionals agree that proactively building employee skills will help navigate the evolving future of work. As businesses evolve and invest in new technologies and more efficient ways of working, there can often be skills gaps. Having comprehensive training plans in place will eliminate these skills gaps.

Positive impact on employee engagement

Employees who feel valued and that their development is invested in within a business will be more engaged and happier within their role and being a part of the company. Engaged employees contribute significantly to greater business activities, customer experience and employee retention.

Improvements in job competence and activity

There are notable improvements in job competency and work output when teams receive ongoing training and development within a business, it improves their knowledge, confidence and efficiency in their role. Not only does this impact their work and productivity, but it also helps with employee engagement.

Consistency across the business

Having robust training and development programmes that can be delivered consistently across the business ensures that all staff receive the same information, guidance and support. If all staff receive the same training, their delivery will be consistent ensuring aligned and uniformed activities across the business.

Leadership potential 

Investing in your employees development, means investing in future leaders. With the right training and development model in a business, you can shape and develop employees into managers who can inspire and motivate teams.

Challenges that L&D face

Engagement and buy-in from employees

In general, training new employees can have better results and engagement in comparison to ongoing training programmes with existing employees. When a new employee joins the organisation, training is an expected part of the new role throughout the onboarding process. For employees that have been with the business some time, they can form their own processes and create habits themselves. When L&D functions try to engage with new training and upskilling, they can receive some resistance from existing employees to get them to buy-in to the benefits additional training will result in. Surprising that businesses have issues with training buy in when so many employees believe development and training opportunities are a huge driving factor when selecting an employee.

Limitations with hybrid structures and global offices

For many larger, global businesses, facilitating training programs can pose challenges. It can be much more difficult to engage with teams through remote training, and to ensure all employees no matter where they are based receive the same level of training, support and accessibility to resources.

Striking the balance with employees day-to-day role

According to Statista, in 2022 the biggest reason for employee training not reaching the desired outcome was due to the inability to find enough time to specially dedicate towards training. While many employees are eager to receive training and for a large percentage, this can be a huge driving factor when selecting a new employer. When it comes to balancing training activities alongside their day to day role, it can sometimes be seen as less of a priority and have less commitment from teams.

Measuring success and results

It can often to measure the success of training efforts within a business as a result of uncertainty around the specific results desired. For measurement to work effectively, it’s important to set goals and understand the learning outcomes you want to achieve with training. Ensure you measure this activity prior to training, throughout and following specific training activities.

Creating an effective L&D function

To create an effective training function and training activities within a business, the first step is to assess what the training needs are within the organisation.

  • What are the training needs across various business functions?
  • What training is needed for new employees compared to existing employees?

The next step is to set training objectives for the organisation think about what you want to achieve in the short term and the long term this will allow you to effectively measure the success of all training within the organisation. Ensure the objectives are clear, realistic and consider all elements of the training process to ensure they are effectively measurable goals.

Following this it's important to consider the training technology, methods and tools you may need to facilitate your training and development function in the business. This will vary from organisation-to-organisation dependent on size, resource and the number of people in the business. There are online training platforms and learning management systems available which can be utilised to host all training content and to allow employees the opportunity to work through online training modules and complete training required from the organisation.

Dependent on the training required businesses will need to select training methods and styles, this may vary from business function and the type of learning required and what the learning outcomes are. Learning and development functions will also need to create training content and be able to communicate this across the business whether this is in person training or online using a learning management system or platform.

With any training within a business, it's important to remember that this needs to be continually reviewed and evaluated to make sure it is effective and up to date with business and employee needs. It's also important to make sure that its effectively reaching the desired results so evaluating all training programmes and training within a business is crucial to success.

Learning and Development at CSG Talent

At CSG Talent, a big focus for our leadership team and for us a business is to continually review and enhance our L&D function to ensure our employees across the globe have access to comprehensive and ongoing training in all business functions. In the last 12 months, our people team have spent time developing a centralised training hub to host all learning and development content which all global offices have access to.

Our people team are focused on developing skills, knowledge and careers of employees at all levels, and ensuring there are clear and achievable career paths in place for this to happen. Jamie Thatcher, COO at CSG Talent highlights how much of a focus career development is for employees at CSG Talent: “It’s essential to ensure all employees are considered when highlighting career paths available in the business. Being able to effectively demonstrate how a potential career path may look for someone at an entry-level or mid-senior level not only engages existing teams but is important for potential employees and talent attraction.”

We recognise that to facilitate an effective training and development function to our employees, and to appeal to potential employees, we need to continually review our processes and measure the success to ensure the overall business, and individuals experience the desired benefits. Explore our Careers and our Training and Development function to learn more on Life at CSG.

As Learning and Development Manager at CSG Talent I am passionate about creating a training and development function that empowers employees across all business functions. We want our teams to have the confidence to perform in their roles to the best of their ability. Successful training programs that we deliver will positively impact employees career development and employee engagement, and these are two goals myself and the people team are heavily focused on now, and in the future.