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Developing Human Capital: Using Analytics to Plan and Optimize Your Learning and Development Investments by Gene Pease, Barbara Beresford, Lew Walker

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Chapter 9Optimization through Predictive Analytics

Many learning leaders will read this book with the aim of finding a return on investment (ROI) for their programs, allowing them to show their organizations just how important training is to business success. It’s a worthy goal and one we’re happy to support. ROI is sometimes criticized, not entirely fairly, for being a historical marker. It is not uncommon to find people who look at ROI only in a backward fashion—they want to clarify the value of what they have done, rather than prepare for the next year’s work. It’s useful to know the outcome of past work so as not to repeat the same mistakes. By calculating an isolated ROI, you will be armed with powerful justification at budget time.

Stopping with ROI fails to capitalize on the ultimate benefit of strategic measurement, and this is a point we can’t stress enough. If you want to rise to the challenges presented by the changing workforce, you must embrace predictive analytics. This powerful data science will radically change the way you plan and deploy learning programs.

A blanket approach to learning programs will not equip your workforce to compete in today’s marketplace. Talent is the most important asset and competitive edge of the majority of contemporary organizations, which emphasizes the ever-growing importance of being able to develop that talent. This especially resonates for learning and development (L&D), but also for all departments in the organization, as talent ...

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