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August 19th, 2021 · 5 min read

What does a world-class corporate learning ecosystem look like?

What is a corporate learning ecosystem?

Learning culture vs. learning ecosystem

Components of a corporate learning ecosystem

  • People
    Employees play a critical role in cultivating a learning and development ecosystem. Everyone from the executive team to the most junior-level employee is responsible for contributing to and participating in the workplace culture that feeds into a greater learning ecosystem. If your people don’t have a growth mindset, it poses a challenge to your L&D strategy.
  • Content
    Content in a learning ecosystem comes in many different formats. This includes formal educational materials such as a university lecture series or training video course. It may also include informal information, such as the advice and/or mentorship of other employees or internal company resources.
  • Technology
    Almost every aspect of a learning ecosystem is impacted by technology. Tech influences what’s being taught, how it’s being taught and what devices or platforms it’s being taught on. This allows employees to access a variety of online learning methodologies and to engage with educational content in ways that work best for them and their unique learning needs.
  • Learning culture
    A workplace learning culture drives engagement across your ecosystem. For an ecosystem to be successful, the idea of continuous learning and growth has to be central to your company culture and values. A thriving learning culture is marked by employees that want to continue developing their skills, seek advancement and support their colleagues in doing the same.
  • Data
    As with any L&D strategy, it’s important to analyze and adjust your learning ecosystem as needed. Engage metrics to track employee behavior and continuously evaluate whether or not your efforts are driving impact both at the employee and organizational level. 

How to build a thriving corporate learning ecosystem

  • Evaluate all components equally
    Every component of your learning ecosystem is vital to its overall success. For example, without the right technology, it can be difficult to deliver educational content to your employees in an easily accessible format. But if the content you’re offering doesn’t resonate with team members in the first place, it doesn’t matter what technology is used — the learning program is at risk of being underutilized.

    For L&D leaders, it’s important to evaluate every component equally, understand how they’re connected and strategize how to move each piece forward in a way that’s beneficial to the greater ecosystem. 
  • Assign tangible roles within your ecosystem
    As mentioned earlier, your learning ecosystem needs support from its people component in order to thrive. Everyone — from the CEO to the newest employee — should understand how they fit into that strategy. It may be your responsibility to implement the strategy, but employees at all levels play a part in enabling it to thrive. Executives drive learning as a value within company culture, people managers support their direct reports on their learning journey and all employees want to learn and advance their careers.
  • Align your learning ecosystem to support business goals
    Workforce data shows that continuous employee development and learning is good for business. But this can only happen if your learning initiatives are aligned with greater company goals. Whether you’re evaluating a new learning management system or considering a workforce education program, measurable business outcomes should be central to your strategy.

You can address talent development challenges