New research by FutureLearn has shown that an employees chance of promotion is enhanced by taking online courses. FutureLearn are the online social learning platform, owned by The Open University. They surveyed 600 employers in recruitment or development roles in the UK, US, and Australia.
A massive 92% of employers said they found online courses very valuable (51%) or valuable (41%). This could explain why 91% of employers said they had seen the amount of online learning increase in their organisation every year.
Alongside this, 73% of employers surveyed said they thought online courses were either valuable (40%) or very valuable (33%) when considering promoting an employee. 80% of employers said they are willing to provide the funding for online courses that their staff can take at their own initiative. These employers were also happy for almost 10 hours of work time to be devoted to online learning each month.
CPD through online learning was also favoured highly amongst employers when hiring. As a matter of fact, online learning was actually a differentiating factor when assessing candidates with similar qualifications/experience for a new role.
What’s interesting is almost two thirds of employers said a mix of online and offline training was the best way to keep up with industry changes. This means employers aren’t forgetting about ‘old fashioned’ face to face training. When online learning is implemented with some offline learning, it seems you can’t go wrong.
What Does This Mean?
It appears that online learning is definitely part of conversations when it comes to hiring and promotions. Employers are reporting an increase in its usage, and this is all really encouraging. Online learning provides a platform that allows upskilling at scale and can be used across a whole company. Previous professional development has meant getting as many people into a room as possible for the afternoon. Online learning a solution that offers fantastic flexibility. It allows learners to go at their own pace and balance professional development against competing priorities — while still having the benefits of being on the same course as their coworkers.
So, if there’s an online course that you’ve been thinking about, why not give it a go? After all, it may get you that promotion you’ve been dreaming of!