Provider Spotlight: How Acudemy is Leading the Way With Workforce Training
Acudemy is leading the way in flexible learning for companies and individuals. In response to COVID’s rapid changes, Acudemy adapted by centring learners: finding ways to make training more accessible, engaging, and cost-effective.
In this month’s provider spotlight, we spoke to Shameem Saidoo about staying flexible in a global health crisis, responding to L&D trends, and finding ways to build connections.
Tell us briefly about your company, products and services for our business users.
Acudemy has now been present in the adult education sector for over five years, and it has been an incredible journey from where we started. We provide both bespoke and accredited training programmes within our specialised fields. One of our primary goals is to assist individuals and companies in achieving their goals.
The Acudemy team consists of a wealth of experience within the educational industry, working with a large pool of trainers from different specialised backgrounds and experiences. We create hybrid learning solutions from our traditional classroom, on-site and now virtual/e-learning. Delegates have the flexibility to study anytime and anywhere. We constantly strive to ensure that we remain competitive both in terms of service and costs.
What skills gaps can you help to address or upskilling opportunities do you provide for businesses?
Acudemy offers a wide range of open courses covering different fields of study and varying experience levels. This flexibility to adapt the course materials bridges the gap, satisfying both the organisation and the individual. Some of our popular areas include Accounting & Finance, Leadership & Management, and Process Management.
For the past year now, we have been offering 100+ accredited online self-paced training covering fields like Leadership, Mental Health, Project Management and Soft Skills to mention a few. With reduced mobility during the COVD-19 situation, many people have been able to upskill at a cost-effective learning solution.
What are the main trends in Learning & Development that you’re expecting to see come into focus for 2021?
2020 has been a rollercoaster of a year for us and training providers alike, whereby we switched all our face2face training to a virtual learning environment. Whilst it has been a stop-and-start year due to the numerous lockdowns, we have taken this opportunity to keep our heads above water. We’ve concentrated on embracing the changing landscape of the virtual learning environment, and how companies and employees adapt to the working-from-home situation. That looks to become the new norm for the near future — or at least a hybrid version of 2 days in the physical office and three days working from home.
As throughout COVID, we have seen an increase in job losses and cutbacks. Organisations will have to consider upskilling existing staff rather than hiring new individuals. This will impact on any L&D. Finding organisations that still believe training to be an essential spend in 2021 will be the focus.
What technology is going to have the biggest impact on Workforce learning this year?
Working from home has had a significant impact for all. Whilst the software was previously available, COVID has fast-forwarded everyone into implementing the framework to adapt to individuals to work from home. Therefore, collaboration tools like MS Teams, Slack, Google and Zoom have had a massive increase in uptake, just to ensure that business continues. All have brought new capabilities and functionalities into facilitating working from home. This also has translated into how we learn on a virtual basis.
What do you see as the biggest challenge for organisations looking to train their staff? And how can you help?
Working from home is still the biggest challenge for organisations, especially if you’re in an environment where it is challenging to work, I.e., kids around, non-quiet space. Secondly finding the balance between work and personal life balance and having to work in the place of rest, potentially having an impact on an individual’s mental health.
We are trying to encourage learning to be cut into short, bite-size days, over a longer period, to ensure we still have learner’s engagement. Based on what we have seen, being stuck in front of a laptop listening to a trainer for a whole day is a very different experience to being in a physical learning environment, bringing a potential drop off in engagement and interaction. Furthermore, we can encourage delegates to learn through our short e-learning courses which can be done in their own time at their pace. This is another route we are promoting.
How has your business overcome the challenges posed by Covid-19 and how are you helping your corporate clients?
COVID has hindered the plans of many organisations throughout 2020. Training budgets, including redundancies, has kicked in due to the uncertainty this pandemic has caused. Therefore, coming up with a cost-effective solution for all, we have worked on:
What are you reading currently to keep up to speed with the ever-changing L&D sector (blogs, white papers, podcasts)?
Our primary source has come through our LinkedIn network as you find a lot of L&D related content from blogs, articles and connections sharing videos and podcasts. We certainly have seen a vast increase in posts and traffic since the start of the pandemic, and it’s great to see what our L&D peers are doing.
It seems fitting for a company in the L&D space to learn from a crisis. With one eye on the future, the other on the learning experience, Acudemy is certainly one to watch. Whatever is next, they’ll be ready to meet it.
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