What is Human Resource Development?

Human Resource Development (HRD) is the combined integration of training, management, and career development efforts to enhance performance of the human resource in an organization. HRD aims to develop major competencies of human resources, enabling employees to outperform current and future jobs by way of well-planned learning activities.

human resource development

The Boeing Company plans to spend $100 million on new workforce development programs. This would involve improving digital literacy and be understanding the trends that could impact future jobs within the manufacturing industry. 

Why HRD?

Leading organisations in India should definitely take a cue from this. With so much technological disruption happening, employees need to go through constant upskilling or re-skilling. This is as much a responsibility of the organisation as it is of the employees themselves. Organisations which invest a considerable amount of money in the human resource development for low attrition rates, better mobility across jobs and a healthy corporate culture.

Here are 6 most innovative practices that can be incorporated for human resource development; to achieve maximum results:

(1) Video modules

For more client-facing roles such as sales, marketing, customer relations etc. imparting training through videos is quite effective. The videos will give a real-world feel to the employees and they can also know more about the correct body language in more client facing roles. Video modules based on Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are in-things now. Also interactive 360 degree videos makes the training more interesting and also makes a participant more involved in the process. It also allows real-time assessment of knowledge of the participants. Training modules using AR and VR are a tad expensive so the L&D department needs to work out on the ROI before venturing.

(2) Blended learning

The demand of each training session is different. The participants are different as well, hence there is a constant need for offering training that is in person as well as through virtual medium such as e-learning, live online classes etc. Thanks to the technological advancements, it has become increasingly possible for trainers to build blended courses and modules. This medium not only allows maximum flexibility in terms of delivery but also gives options for a learner who may be comfortable in one particular mode of training.

(3) Mobility in learning

Modules should be flexible across platforms. This is useful for staff who commute too much or travel a lot due to work requirements. The module if viewed on video should also be available on tablet or other devices. There should be no constraint of time-space and material. The content should be crisp and responsive on all digital platforms. By being able to switch seamlessly across platforms, a learner can stay connected at all times and also efficiently make maximum utilisation of time.

(4) Storytelling to touch emotional chord

No matter what the platform or mode of learning, the focus needs to be on touching the human element instead of just the technical parts. Unless learning evokes emotions, it will not be enjoyable and impactful. This is where storytelling is important. Story builds a strong connect between the training content and the learner and the latter is easily able to identify himself with it. Storytelling is an art, hence the instructor needs to indulge in storytelling that is crisp, engaging and fresh. Humour plays a very important role in storytelling. If instructors are successful in adding a dash of humour in the content, the learning process becomes fun and the effectiveness of the campaign increases manifold. After all, who wants a training session that is drab and boring?

(5) Unique content for each employee

Each employee is unique, plays a different role, therefore the training also needs to be customised. One size fits all doesn’t exist in learning and development. Hence, it is the need of the hour to design curriculum based on each employee’s experience, job role, skill sets, educational background and culture. Content should not be imposed but imparted based on unique requirements. Just as organisations strive to establish personalised relations with customers, in the same way, the instructor should also aim to provide personalised training as much as the situation permits. This is one of the best ways to make an employee feel valued.

(6) Content to be updated continuously  

We are living in times that is fiercely competitive and dynamic. Technology, employee mindset, macro factors, and industry developments as well the organisational goals are fast changing. This calls for constant updating in the training materials as well. The modules need to reflect the latest developments in the sector and inform learners about the expected changes in future. Only then will the purpose of training, which is to prepare learners/ employees for future challenges, be achieved.

Human Resource Development itself has undergone a lot of metamorphosis due to technological innovation. This has resulted in companies being able to create a profile-specific module or customized mode of delivery of these modules for maximum flexibility.

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