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Building Partnerships with Higher Ed

Posted by Beth Doyle on May 6, 2016

Topics: Adult Learning

Many companies are building partnerships with institutions of higher learning because they realize the value of training and education. If you’re thinking of making it easier for employees to learn without taking time away from work, there has never been a better time.

Getting your employees the training they need to succeed is a collaborative effort. You don’t want to send them out into the vast world of degrees, certifications and accreditation from institutions of higher learning to make all the decisions alone. It is far wiser to have a system in place that gives employees the ability to seek training within the workplace.

This gives you the power to carefully craft the information that is taught. If you don’t already have partnerships with learning institutions, it’s not too late to get started. Lynn Schroeder, VP of Client Relations at CAEL, recently penned an article detailing how to get the ball rolling on collaboration. There are some great gems to take away from the piece.

Take a look at what you need to know about educational partnerships:

Why Collaboration Matters
We are facing a real talent crisis. The fact of the matter is that the world isn’t turning out work-ready graduates. This has a lot to do with how specialized so many roles are today.

As a result, employers have difficulty filling positions with skilled, competent employees. It takes additional learning for workers to fit the roles they’re hired to perform. This can be a costly and time-consuming issue for employers. If only there was a way to ensure that employees could be equipped with the skills to jump in on the very first day of work.

The good news is that partnerships between employers and learning institutions can bridge that gap in the quickest, most cost-effective way.

Fast Paths to the Right Skills
Big companies around the country are collaborating with learning institutions to get their employees the

 

skills and training necessary to succeed. Health Care Service Corp. and Allstate are two of the companies partnering with universities to create quick routes to education and certification for employees. In one instance, a 17-hour certificate program in customer-service skills is crafted to meet a company’s needs.

This targeted type of education is exactly what is needed in our busy world. The employees who benefit from this program may not have been actively seeking a training program on their own. Even if they found one, the time and money involved may have deterred them. By creating a company culture that includes training, employees can feel enthusiastic about getting the skills they need. In addition, employees don’t have to worry about taking time away from work. Collaboration between a company and a learning institution creates a balance for employees.

The Importance of Relevancy
There are so many courses and programs out there for workers to choose from to sharpen their skills. Unfortunately, many of those programs contain material that isn’t relevant to every field or specialized position. While branching out to learn new things can be fun, employees need to acquire the skills that will help them perform today.

This is why a targeted curriculum is key. A streamlined plan allows companies to use a laser focus in preparing a workforce for today’s rapidly changing technical landscape. Employers can have peace of mind knowing that all workers are on the same page because the curriculum they learn from is carefully vetted.

In addition, there will be uniformity in the type of training each employee receives. This alone can save countless hours of productivity that might otherwise be lost to confusion, miscommunication or discrepancies throughout the course of a project.

It’s Not Too Late
Are you worried because your organization or institution doesn’t have a partnership in place with a learning institution? More and more educational institutions are opening up opportunities for companies. Make an educational partnership part of your company’s initiative for staying competitive in the years to come.

 Beth Doyle is Interim VP, LearningCounts, for CAEL.

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