Tech-savvy young people ‘dislike’ online training

June 10, 2015

Understand how Gen Y wants to develop to uncover future talent – By Grace Lewis – 2 June 2015

Employers have been urged to pay more attention to developing young workers in their own organisations as CIPD research highlighted the risks of making false assumptions about how young people want to learn.

Research outlined in the institute’s Developing the Next Generation report said that unchallenged stereotypes or generalisations about how to support and grow young employees could create ineffective development initiatives.

“With over 300,000 young people entering the workforce every year, organisations need to establish effective development opportunities from the moment they’re em-ployed, so they can retain them and build on the unique skills they bring,” said Ruth Stuart, research adviser for L&D at the CIPD.

According to the CIPD’s report, young people showed a preference for bite-sized learning, gaining knowledge from experience and receiving constructive feedback. Alt-hough they admitted to being ‘tech-savvy’, the majority of candidates said they dis-liked ‘online training’.

“Having awareness of generational learning preferences is essential,” the report said.

Stuart added: “To be successful though, organisations must be clear on what they are trying to achieve. It’s pointless to introduce a scheme without first considering its im-pact on the wider business and ensuring it fits with future resourcing needs.”

And offering more access routes into employment was found to be just one part of the equation when it comes to employing young people. As a result, the CIPD has urged employers to move the future talent debate on from recruitment methods alone, to focus more on the development of young people to retain great talent and improve business performance.

Young people bring enthusiasm and drive, innovative thinking and technological under-standing to the workforce, the report said. However, young employees need to devel-op deeper skills in self-awareness, acceptance or criticism and emotional intelligence.

Stuart said: “Young people have enormous potential to contribute to a business’s suc-cess if their strengths and skills are recognised and enhanced. Organisations need to carefully select the right kind of programmes to ensure they have the chance to make an impact at an early stage.”

A 2015 survey from the CIPD showed that 76 per cent of organisations offer at least one programme aimed at young people, including apprenticeships, work-based de-grees and industrial placements. However, the Developing the Next Generation report said establishing a clear business case for developing younger workers is a recurring challenge for organisations.

Nick White, graduate programme manager at Fujitsu, one of the case study companies featured in the report, said that investing in younger people in the organisation can drive engagement, increase efficiency and foster greater productivity across the work-force.

“We can see real value in the programmes and investing time, effort and money into making the programmes work,” he said.

“It’s about making sure we have future leaders, and that is actually happening. Thirty per cent of those on our Future Leaders Programme started as graduates in the organisation.”

Fujitsu’s approach to developing young talent has impacted the culture of the organisation, but retention is also higher and recruitment costs have decreased, demonstrating the impact on the bottom line.

The original article can be located here.

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