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Great resignations: how to face them with the e-learning

The phenomenon of "great resignation" explained in numbers by the Harvard Business Review. What can be the role of eLearning?

In May, June and July of 2021 in the United States there was a phenomenon that involved 11.5 million people and that will go down in history as the "great resignation". The Bureau of Labor Statistcs has shown, in fact, that in July alone 4 million people decided to leave their jobs, marking a record escape from work not only compared to the previous year but since the beginning of the new millennium. The Harvard Business Review, HBR, has punctually analyzed data on 9 million resigned employees at 4,000 companies to understand the reasons behind this unexpected phenomenon. The lessons learned provide a great insight into what role online training can play in retaining talent. Let's see why.

Big resignations: who's leaving their jobs?

According to HBR analysts, the profile of those involved in large resignations fall into a specific age group: people aged 35-45. It is therefore, personnel who are in an intermediate position in their career path. Younger people, who typically experience a much higher turnover rate in the U.S., have remained essentially stable, as have older workers in the 60-70 age group.

The age of the resigners suggests that they are people with family commitments, greater need to find more work-life balance, or simply looking for a better position.

Great resignation: which sectors are affected?

HBR highlights that the highest rate of resignations occurred in sectors that saw an exponential increase in demand during the pandemic, particularly healthcare (+3.6% resignations) and technology (+4.5%). The cause of resignations according to the American magazine, could be burnout, the excess of work. In fact, if you analyze other sectors, the data suggests that even those most adversely affected by the closures imposed by the pandemic have seen their workforce decrease with an increase in resignations: retail (+4.7%), hospitality (+6.4%), and restaurants (+6.8%). This suggests that the problem is not too much or too little work. The causes, therefore, must be sought in quality.

Understanding large resignations with data analysis

HBR's suggestion is to understand the real reasons behind large resignations by leveraging your own business intelligence then internal company data. In this way, you can quantify the problem and see which employees are leaving the company, what their demographics are, what their roles are. Among the reasons that drive millions of people to leave their jobs, we will focus on corporate training, which, next to promotions, salaries, motivation, is one of the factors that most influence decisions about one's job future.

How to retain staff with online training

Having few training opportunities for employees also means missing out on opportunities to learn new skills, advance their careers, aspire to better salaries. If training courses still adhere to the classic model of exclusively classroom-based training, with schedules and learning rhythms managed by the trainer, then the risk is also that of taking away space from one's work and family.

Online corporate training can be a great way to upskill, reskill and re-motivate employees. For companies approaching e-learning and for those that need to re-evaluate their online course offerings, it's important to consider the motivations, aspirations, and ideas that employees have about training:

  • Courses must reflect skills that are truly useful for the jobs and roles employees hold
  • Employees' preferences must be taken into account: there are those who perform better with blended training, those who need to learn on the job and prefer asynchronous training, those who need social learning, exchange with colleagues, whether online or on the job.

LMS: a data analysis tool against big resignations

If HBR's recipe is to invest in an efficient system for data analysis, the answer in corporate training can only be a learning management system, LMS.

Companies that use a learning management system are made easier to analyze data. Their LMS has timely statistics and reports on course completion and employee performance. This information can be used to understand what is the chosen way of learning, when it is best to offer a training course, what content is essential in a course catalog.

The ability to do surveys also helps to get the point of view of the employees themselves to understand how satisfied they are with the training program or what their suggestions are about the skills they really apply in doing their jobs. So, analyzing data is all about managing talent by listening to employees, and in the area of training, the fastest and most flexible way to respond to everyone's needs is an LMS platform.

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