Investing in Your People: The Role of Learning and Development in Attracting and Retaining Talent

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss

People are one of the most significant assets that any organisation can have. However, for any asset to thrive or add value, there needs to be a continuous investment and intentional effort that drives this process.

Talent Management and Retention

According to a study by Deloitte (2019), 63% of millennials consider the availability of training and development opportunities a key factor when choosing an employer. Similarly, a survey by LinkedIn (2018) found that 94% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career development. Investing in learning and development is, therefore, essential for attracting new talent and retaining current employees.

Talent management is an essential HR component that should be considered. It can be used as a great tool to identify, attract, develop, and retain talent within the organisation. Talent management includes the processes of recruitment, hiring, engagement, development, performance management, recognition, and succession planning. It will also assist in identifying gaps in the skills or experience of employees, which can then be addressed through learning and development initiatives.

Understanding what each employee brings to the table, creating a matrix of aligning individuals to the right roles and duties where they can contribute the most helps improve engagement and efficiency. We can then further look into what learning and development employees need to succeed, and this is then addressed through the Workplace Skills Plan, which is submitted annually.

Employee Engagement and Productivity

Employee engagement and productivity are closely linked to learning and development. When employees perceive their employer to be invested in their growth and development, they are likelier to feel engaged and committed to their work. A report by the Association for Talent Development (2019) found that companies with a strong learning culture have a 30-50% higher employee engagement rate than those without. Additionally, research by Gallup (2017) shows that engaged employees are more productive, with companies that prioritise employee engagement outperforming those that do not by up to 202%.

“A company’s employees are its greatest asset, and your people are your product” – Richard Branson.

Innovation and Adaptability

Investing in people also drives innovation and adaptability within an organisation. Continuous learning and development enable employees to stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends and best practices and assist in developing new skills and competencies that can drive innovation and growth. In a rapidly changing business environment, the ability to adapt and innovate is crucial for staying competitive. A survey by PwC (2020) found that 79% of CEOs are concerned about the availability of key skills, and investing in employee development is one way to address this challenge.

In conclusion, investing in people is essential for attracting and retaining top talent, driving employee engagement and productivity, and promoting innovation and adaptability within an organisation. Companies prioritising employee development and creating a culture of continuous learning are better positioned to succeed in today’s dynamic business environment. 

“The best investment any company can make is in their employees.” – Bill Gates

Revitalise your workforce and improve your organisational effectiveness with Siyakha’s expert assistance in reviewing and enhancing your ‘people’ strategy through our specialised WSP and ATR process.

Sune Marais

E: sune.marais@siyakha.co.za | T: 011 706 9006

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