A new study of workers investigating the impact learning and development (L&D) has on individual career growth and workplace happiness has been released by CYPHER Learning.

The findings reveal that workers feel ineffective managers and a lack of training and development are holding them back in their careers – with many thinking promotions are based on popularity, rather than skill.

The new report – From Skills to Success: L&D Insights for the Modern Workforce  suggests that quality of L&D has a direct impact on employees’ sentiment towards their employer and their propensity to leave – particularly for younger workers.

Key findings include:

  • Lack of L&D is making younger workers want to quit: 77% of UK workers (70% globally) feel their organisation’s L&D could be better; 31% of whom said this was negatively impacting their job satisfaction (36% globally) and 37% that it was making them consider leaving (compared to 36% globally) – with 18-34 year olds being the most likely to want to leave (44%).
  • Managers are failing their teams: While 73% of UK workers (75% globally) think people with more vocal and attentive managers are more likely to be promoted, 50% (53% globally) say theirmanager is under equipped to help them progress in their career.
  • Employees feeling adrift in the workplace: 68% of UK workers (69% globally) would welcome guidance and training to help them navigate the ‘unspoken rules’ of the workplace. Meanwhile, 63% of UK workers feel that school / college / university has left them unprepared for the workplace (56% globally), with 67% of 18-24 year olds agreeing.
  • Lack of trust is making workers sceptical:55% of UK workers (54% globally) do not trust HR to look out for their interests, while one in ten UK workers (9% globally) say they’d feel ‘sceptical and unconvinced’ if they were offered bespoke training, as they would question the motives behind it.

The research shows that if companies can get training right, it can have a hugely positive effect. 23% of UK employees (30% globally) said that training they received was “exceptionally rewarding” – leaving them feeling “truly enlightened and invigorated.”

However, many are not being given this opportunity. 15% of UK workers (16% globally) have received no training at all in the past twelve months.

When considering what people want from training, it was found that:

  • 88% of UK workers (89% globally) would feel encouraged and enthusiastic if offered bespoke training for their role, ‘depending on the content and delivery of the programme.’
  • 90% of UK workers would feel encouraged and enthusiastic if offered bespoke training for their role, assuming the content and delivery were right – with 64% of UK workers (63% globally) wanting that training to be delivered at the point of need.
  • Soft skills are valued as highly as technical skills across all regions – with leadership ranking as the number one area that workers would like training in, followed by role-specific skills and critical thinking.
  • Leadership also ranked as the number one area that workers think theirmanager needs training in, with listening in second place, and collaboration and team management in third (again consistent globally).

Graham Glass, founder, and CEO of CYPHER Learning, commented:

When a continuous culture of learning is created, employees are given the tools to thrive and grow. That is the power that a structured L&D programme can deliver. We can see that workers are craving training that is delivered at the right time, in the right way, that is relevant to them. This is achievable. With a new generation of AI-enabled L&D, timely, cost effective personalisation at scale can be a reality.

Graham Glass, founder, and CEO of CYPHER Learning

Editor at Workplace Wellbeing Professional | Website | + posts

Joanne is the editor for Workplace Wellbeing Professional and has a keen interest in promoting the safety and wellbeing of the global workforce. After earning a bachelor's degree in English literature and media studies, she taught English in China and Vietnam for two years. Before joining Work Well Pro, Joanne worked as a marketing coordinator for luxury property, where her responsibilities included blog writing, photography, and video creation.