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The 2011 State of the Industry: Increased Commitment to Workplace Learning

November 1, 2011 14:00 by Ann Pace

(From T+D magazine) -- The findings of ASTD’s 2011 State of the Industry Report show that organizations are just as committed as ever to learning and development (L&D). ASTD estimates that U.S. organizations spent about $171.5 billion on employee L&D in 2010. This amount includes direct learning expenditures such as the learning function’s staff salaries, administrative learning costs, and nonsalary delivery costs. Sixty percent ($103 billion) of total expenditures were spent on internal expenses and the remaining 40 percent ($68.5 billion) contributed to external expenses.

The 2011 State of the Industry Report data from more than 400 responding organizations across all major industries show that, overall, organizations continue to be committed to the delivery of knowledge and the development of employees at every level. As evidence, they’re investing more in learning and development per employee, maintaining the same number of learning hours, and increasing their expenditure on tuition reimbursement.

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Corporate learning evolves to meet today’s needs

July 28, 2011 13:45 by Ann Pace

(From Atlanta Business News) -- Workplace learning is alive and well, but it is changing to meet today’s market needs.

U.S. organizations spent about $125.88 billion on employee learning and development in 2009, according to the 2010 State of the Industry Report by the American Society for Training and Development. That was about 6.1 percent less than in 2009.

“Companies eliminated duplication and made sensible changes in their training divisions to be more efficient, but overall most didn’t see budgets slashed,” said Pat Galagan, executive editor for the ASTD. “In tough times, companies need to improve the skills of their workers more than ever, and they need to do it efficiently. You wouldn’t expect to buy a computer and never upgrade the software, would you? People need new skills.”

With a long-standing culture for leadership development and training, UPS didn’t flinch in the recession, said Anne Schwartz, vice president for global leadership development.

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E-Learning Still Trending Up

December 2, 2010 12:27 by Ann Pace

(From Human Resource Executive Online) -- According to the 2010 State of the Industry Report just released by the Alexandria, Va.-based American Society for Training and Development, 37 percent of training hours involved electronic technology in 2009; 28 percent of training was done online, up from 23 percent in 2008.

By comparison, in 2002, only 15 percent of the 304 companies surveyed used electronic technology to deliver formal training.

Meanwhile, live, face-to-face interaction is down to 59 percent, says Pat Galagan, ASTD executive editor. "There is a lot of blended electronic and classroom. It's a general trend."

Despite a total drop in training expenditures, the ASTD says it is encouraged by the continuing high level of investment in job training by U.S. companies, despite the recession.

Companies surveyed invested $126 billion in job training in 2009. While that is a decrease of 6 percent from 2008, the average cost-per-employee remained stable -- increasing very slightly, by 1 percent -- because there was a smaller work force.

In addition, learning expenditures accounted for a slightly larger percentage of corporate revenue and profit.

"The findings ... clearly demonstrate that executives and business leaders know their investments in employee learning and development are keys to survival, recovery and future growth," says ASTD president and CEO Tony Bingham.

Galagan says it's not unusual for training expenditures to "remain stable despite the recession". When the workforce is cut, the employees that remain are doing more and often have to be trained in new areas.

In addition, in bad times, companies often opt to make a "rapid change in direction" or business model, which "requires a change in skills for everybody," she says.

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Training Industry’s Most Prestigious Awards Receive Record Applications for 2010

April 28, 2010 13:36 by Kristen Fyfe

Just how prestigious are ASTD's BEST Awards? Here's a quote from a 2009 winner. “Being a five-time winner of the ASTD BEST Awards, we not only take pride in our past accomplishments, we look forward to the challenge each year that ASTD puts forward concerning the rigour of the application process as well as the thought provoking questions themselves,” notes Dan Pontefract, Senior Director, Learning at TELUS. “Knowing we’re competing against global organizations brings not only credibility to the win, but it elevates the learning function’s cause and ultimate capabilities across our entire organization.”

The ASTD BEST Awards, the training industry’s most rigorous and coveted awards program, received a record number of applications for 2010, indicating that more companies around the world understand the value employee learning brings to their workforce and want to be recognized by their peers as leaders in training and development. The BEST Awards are unique because of the rigor and blind peer-review that comprise the judging process. Applicants who submitted in the 2010 program represent companies ranging from the Fortune 500 to international organizations.

“Through the BEST Awards, ASTD has recognized excellence in learning and development for eight years,” says Tony Bingham, President and CEO of ASTD. “The BEST Awards program is unlike any other awards in the training industry. Not only is the application and review process unique, but ASTD extends the value of the BEST Awards by holding the ‘Learn from the BEST’ one-day conference following the awards ceremony where learning executives from winning organizations share their knowledge and expertise with conference attendees.”

In addition, the data gathered from BEST Award winners is used in ASTD’s annual State of the Industry report, the benchmarking source for the industry. All BEST award applicants receive feedback from reviewers on their applications as a way to benefit their organizations.

John Coné, former Vice President of Learning & Development at Dell, Inc., and now a consultant in organizational learning, is on the BEST Awards review panel. He notes that one of most useful things about the BEST Awards process is that it is a “great introspective act that helps you [applicants] and others to look holistically, critically, and appreciatively at your work.”

The 2010 BEST Awards will be presented on September 30, 2010 in Washington, D.C.


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ASTD Releases 2009 State of the Industry Report

November 12, 2009 13:00 by ASTD Research

The 2009 State of the Industry Report revealed that workplace learning and performance has withstood the challenges of the difficult economy. Although investment in training was stable in 2008, organizations achieved positive outcomes and successfully contributed to their employees’ development with more formal learning opportunities while using fewer resources.

Although many organizations were forced to cut costs wherever possible, workplace learning and performance did not suffer disproportionately to any significant degree. Investment in employee learning and development remained steady through the end of 2008. Although the average annual learning expenditure per employee fell from $1,110 in 2007 to $1,068 in 2008 – a 3.8 percent decrease – it was not large by any means. The commitment to learning is also evident from the figure for average learning expenditure as a percentage of payroll: it increased from 2.15 percent in 2007 to 2.24 percent in 2008.

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ASTD Releases 2009 State of the Industry Report

November 12, 2009 11:55 by Kristen Fyfe
Despite the roughest economy in decades, organizations showed a commitment to learning and development, spending $130 billion in 2008 - or roughly $1,068 per employee. That's one of the big findings in the just-released 2009 State of the Industry Report from ASTD. The numbers are down a bit from 2007, but the news is not glum. Read the press release here for more data. Or you can access the full report at www.astd.org if you are a member of ASTD -- and why wouldn't you be with great research like this?

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Participate in ASTD's 2009 State of the Industry Report

June 9, 2009 14:33 by ASTD Research

ASTD is currently collecting data for our 2009 State of the Industry Report - the most sought after research in the industry of learning and performance. We have extended the deadline for participation this year to June 22, 2009.  All organizations that submit their learning and performance data by the deadline will receive a complimentary pre-release electronic copy of the report. Please consider entering your data as soon as possible so your organization can help set the standard for the industry and benchmark against other companies.

ASTD collects State of the Industry Report data through our WLP Scorecard - an online benchmarking tool that allows organizations to compare and benchmark against hundreds of other organizations in our database.  For more information on the WLP Scorecard, you may visit the WLP Scorecard or view a recorded webinar overview of the Scorecard and data submission.


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More Learning per Employee, More Reuse are Continued Trends in the Training Industry

May 1, 2009 12:19 by ASTD Research

The 2008 State of the Industry Report showed a continuation of rising trends in amounts of learning consumed per employee and average reuse ratio - the ratio of consumption to availablity of learning content. The amount of learning content consumed by each employee on average was on the upswing for the consolidated set of organizations. In 2007, the average number of learning hours used was 37.4, up from 35.1 in 2006. Employees in ASTD Benchmarking Forum organizations used an average of 43.0 learning hours in 2007. For the second consecutive year, the average number of learning hours used among ASTD BEST Award winners displayed a minor gain, rising from 44.3 hours in 2006 to 44.7 hours in 2007. These gains in the amount of content consumed suggest that business leaders expect the average professional to incorporate many learning activities into his or her annual schedule.

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The WLP Scorecard is Open for 2008 Data

March 9, 2009 20:53 by ASTD Research

With the latest release of the WLP Scorecard in February, we have opened submissions for 2008 organizational learning data.  Any 2008 data submitted to the WLP Scorecard will be used to produce ASTD's 2009 State of the Industry Report.

There are two ways to submit data for the 2009 State of the Industry Report: apply for a BEST Award, or submit your data to the WLP Scorecard.  BEST Award applications are due March 31, 2009 - more information can be found at http://www.astd.org/BEST.  You can learn more about the WLP Scorecard or register for an account at http://wlpscorecard.astd.org.  The first of the 3 subscription levels is free of charge - and you can run reports vs. the data entered so far at any time after data submission.  The data submission deadline for inclusion in the 2009 State of the Industry Report is June 15.


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