Liam Butler discusses the importance of learning and development and why employers should invest in people training.
Recently, thousands of students across the UK, ripped open pieces of paper that would undoubtedly begin to define their journey through life. Whether students passed with flying colours or received results that left them feeling underwhelmed, it’s important for them to know there is more to education than simply obtaining a pass grade.
No matter what students decide to do after getting their grades, whether this be a move towards higher education or a move that thrusts them into the working world, the importance of continued learning and development as they evolve into adults must not be underestimated.
Education doesn’t simply just stop once you’ve got your GCSE’s, A-Levels or Degree, it’s a continuous process that follows people throughout their career and allows them to build on their skills. This fact is highlighted by a recent survey by the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) of 1,7000 professionals that discovered British school leavers are the worst in Europe for ‘essential skills’.
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The skills students learn and hone throughout their education, serve as a foundation designed to be built upon. Obtaining the right results is only one part of being able to translate this into the modern day work-place. A report published by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), states that despite the sharp increase in UK University attendees, this success did not translate into the level of basic skills required for employment.
To add further fuel to the fire, CIPD recently released a report noting the growing demand for skilled UK graduates, and the need for young people to carefully think about entering higher education when a practical skill-building apprenticeship would in some cases be a more successful avenue towards forging a career.
Alongside education, the need to provide good workplace learning and development programmes is crucial to career success at any age, as this is what ultimately builds a strong workforce now and in the future. Therefore, it’s crucial to teach students that:
- Higher education does not guarantee the skills needed for employment
- Having the motivation and desire to constantly learn is important
- Learning is a continuous process that will carry on throughout working life
Ultimately, employers want to hire people who demonstrate a willingness to learn and develop the skills required to plug the gaps in their organisations, not those who simply rest on their laurels.