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Finding the Return on Investment of Learning and Development Programs

Finding the Return on Investment of Learning and Development Programs


Every year, millions of employees across the United States complete job-related courses in compliance, soft skills, upselling, product training, and more. In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, companies are reinvesting in training practices. This is especially prevalent among small businesses and large companies, who are investing on average 600 more dollars a year in training than midsized companies.

How Do You Properly Measure the Value of Corporate Learning in Your Business?

Measuring the return of investment, or ROI, of learning and development programs is incredibly important to making visible the impact of these programs. Revenue and profit are two classic indicators of a successful ROI.

Post-coronavirus, new metrics like employee confidence, increased sales, and employee engagement levels are feeling more indicative than pre-covid metrics such as training attendance, travel for learning and development, and webinar completion. One problem is that 92% of companies do not track learning and development ROI at all, which means that they are missing out on valuable information to the success of their company.

The basic formula for ROI is simple: learning and development benefit, minus the cost of learning and development, divided by the cost of learning and development multiplied by 100. Expenses of ROI include time (including corporate learning material development), effort (training time per employee) and money (including transportation, venue, catering, speakers, and equipment).

On average, having an in-person training session could end up costing upwards of $40,000. This number is also missing another major cost, which is the total a company may spend on an employee being trained. When basing on a salary of $15 an hour, a company could be spending over 1k based on 71 hours of training.

It may seem worth it for a company to outsource their training, but alternative and online models are not always as money saving as they would appear to be. These outsourced options still include costs for content libraries, course authoring tools, communication tools, third-party consultants, course marketing tools, and learning record stores.

While some of these options can be found from trusted sources such as LinkedIn and Mailchimp the investment may overall still be more than a company finds proportionally worth it.

Some are Worried About Outsourcing their Corporate Learning Programs Outside of the Organization

Unfortunately, when asked about their experiences many employees reported mixed outcomes. A quarter of employees surveyed said they forgot learning and development material immediately. 1% less said that the training wasn’t relevant to their position, and another 21% of employees said the material was out of date.

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Out of the organizations surveyed, 35% of them felt they did not have access to the training content they would want for their employees. This cumulatively leads to major losses in learning and development– only 10% of money spent on traditional learning and development delivers real results. Ineffective training leads to a loss of $1.35 million per 1,000 employees.

Accurately measuring ROI is key to turning the major loss into new potential for the company. When tracking an increase in revenue, a direct correlation was found that for each $1 spend on L&D there was a $4.70 revenue increase. This correlation shows that the key to revenue increase is finding the best tool to use to measure your L&D ROI. Arist is a new company that describes itself as a “science-backed microlearning platform.” It is used by 15% of Fortune 500 companies.

Bringing it All Together

Arist attaches value to modern key performance indicators like confidence life and employee retention, which can be hard to quantify or consider in a traditional framework. Arist also costs less time, money, and energy.

Arist takes 195% less time than traditional modules, saves $96 annually per learner, and can alleviate 82% of the energy learning and development teams have to spend on course creation.

This boosts ROI and revenue along multiple avenues, and increases the adoption of learning by 90%. Arist is a very effective tool for companies attempting to clarify their ROI in learning and development. See more in the infographic below.

Published First on ValueWalk. Read Here.

Featured Image Credit: Pexels; Thank you!


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Harmony Evans is an award-winning author of Harlequin Kimani Romance, African-American romance, and so on. Harmony Evans is an award-winning author for Harlequin Kimani Romance, the leading publisher of African-American romance. Her 2nd novel, STEALING KISSES, will be released in November 2013. Harmony is a single mom to a beautiful, too-smart-for-her-own-good daughter, who makes her grateful for life daily. Her hobbies include cooking, baking, knitting, reading, and of course, napping and also review some of the best-selling and popular brands and services in the market and also write comprehensive blogs.


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