Role of HRD in Facilitating Learning in the Organizations

Learning encompasses a wide variety of terms and concepts. This article looks at the meaning of learning in an organizational context. The key point to note about learning in an organizational context is that unless employees continually learn and pick up skills, they would be left behind as well as eroding organizational competitiveness. Especially in the technology and financial sector, learning is a continuous process that ought to take precedence over other aspects since technology keeps changing every now and then. The point here is that unless employees learn and their learning is facilitated by the HRD function, the organizations would fall behind in the race for competitiveness. Hence, the HRD function has a pivotal role in facilitating learning in the organizational context.

Learning can be on the job or through training. On the job learning is mostly from peers and colleagues and is accomplished by the employees doing shared work that would make them pick up new skills and traits in the workplace.

Often, many companies encourage teamwork and collaboration so as to foster a culture of learning and cooperation along with collaboration. In the contemporary context, companies like 3M are said to be examples of true learning organizations where the organizational culture is geared towards making employees learn new skills and attributes on the job. The point here is that organizations and the HRD function must enable learning to take place and ensure that employees learn on the job.

The next aspect to learning is that the HRD function must conduct periodic trainings in technical skills as well as soft skills so as to familiarize their employees with the latest technologies and concepts in the management sciences. Further, soft skills trainings need to be imparted as a means of ensuring that employees are at the forefront of leadership challenges and achieve success through fulfillment and actualization. In many multinationals like Fidelity and IBM, each employee is given a certain number of hours as training so as to enable them to do better and be at the cutting edge of technology and soft skills. Further, learning is a process that continues at all levels and hence the HRD function must make use of the knowledge that is available at all levels and impart it to the employees.

This can be done through interactions between the middle management and the senior management where the senior management shares their knowledge and experiences with the managers and helps them grow as individuals and empowers them in an organizational sense. Learning is a process that is a combination of drive within the individual and catalyzed by external agents. Hence, employees must have the urge to learn and this must be encouraged by the managers and the HRD function. The point here is that there should not be any holding back of knowledge and expertise either from the learner or the imparter.

Finally, the best learning happens when employees discover the insights for themselves. Hence, all efforts of the HRD function must be geared towards ensuring that employees ignite the spark of creativity and stimulate their thirst for learning. In conclusion, learning organizations thrive amidst turbulence and uncertainty and hence, all efforts must be made to ensure that employees and the organizations grow together.


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