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LEO launches key insight on measuring the business impact of learning

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LEO, in collaboration with L&D professionals from more than 25 organisations, has published 10 key components for organisations looking to measure the business impact of learning.


The global training market is worth billions, but little of that expenditure is currently going towards measuring the business impact of learning. Learning analytics can be new and daunting territory for L&D professionals as well as the wider organisation who aren’t sure how to get started with measuring learning impact. But in an age of tightly controlled budgets, being able to demonstrate the value of learning and development has become more important than ever.

In order to help find a way forward, LEO recently held a workshop at the Royal Institution in London, where expert speakers and L&D professionals from 30 organisations came together in an attempt to solve the learning analytics puzzle. The event was facilitated by LEO’s Product Development Director Gareth Jones, who introduced the key speakers:

  • LEO’s Chief Strategy Officer Piers Lea
  • Andy Lancaster, Head of Learning and Development Content at the CIPD
  • L&D and procurement expert Heather Scothern
  • Mike Rustici, founder and CEO of analytics specialists Watershed

“Although many in the room said measuring business impact was difficult, they also felt that the time was right to tackle it and welcomed the opportunity to address the challenge of the session: to design a business impact strategy that is sustainable,” said Lea. “Our ongoing LEO research into the subject of measuring learning impact shows an overwhelming desire for learning and development to use analytics to improve their output, but there are a number of obstacles getting in their way.”

The guests and experts shared their success stories, discussed their obstacles around measuring learning impact and debated potential solutions in an open, collaborative environment.

“The feeling from the room is that it’s tough to get started but it’s more important to start – even if it’s taking a number of small steps. The answer to creating a sustainable strategy lies in taking a big data approach and you can’t do that unless you start collecting data. The requirement is to set a strategy and then get on with it,” Lea added. “As an industry, we are now a lot closer to tackling this than we were a few years ago.”

The wisdom of the room has been collected and is available as a free insight, detailing the 10 key components needed to get started with measuring the business impact of learning. A copy of the LEO insight is available from LEO's web site.

In addition, there were a number of questions at the LEO event for Mike Rustici, an analytics expert who played a critical role in taking elearning standards and specification language SCORM, mainstream. Those have since been published on the LEO blog and go a long way towards answering questions many L&D professionals have on measuring business impact.