Every business is aware of the importance of training and continuous professional development, but the extent to which this is carried out appears to differ greatly when the perspectives of both companies and their workers are taken into account.
That is the key finding following two reports published by the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) on workplace learning, one of which adopted the point of view of employers, and another which questioned their staff.
In recent years, there has been widespread condemnation of British businesses' failure to prepare the next generation of workers, who will maintain economic recovery and propel the country into the forefront of the global stage.
The government has responded to this by rolling out incentives for businesses that make the leap and upskill their workers, and some companies have responded by placing greater emphasis on galvanising their workforce.
This is more true than ever in 2014, with economic recovery continuing and businesses having more money to spend, but there remains a discord among the extent and quality of training and development that is being provided.
Whereas some firms are taking the initiative and booking events at remote locations that offer the suitable environment for learning, other are seemingly devoting little or no time to the activity.
When questioned, 35 per cent of workers claimed they do not receive any training or support at work; this is despite 85 per cent of employers saying they have provided at least one development activity for employees over the past 12 months
Furthermore, while 66 per cent of employers say that they have invested money in training opportunities for their staff over the past year, just 48 per cent of workers are currently undergoing any kind of training.
The results of the reports indicate that employers need to align training to individuals’ needs, which can help to produce better results, according to Caroline Berry, NIACE head of research.
She explained: "If you just try to adopt training methods across your whole workforce, you will end up with certain groups who feel left out or disillusioned."
Whereas all employers "pay lip service" to the importance of learning and development, they need to go one step further and think about the type of training that works for staff, and then implement it, Ms Berry concluded.