How we pivoted to a virtual professional learning and development program – and helped our employees skill up from home.
At Absolutdata, we love helping our employees develop their professional skills. However, our initial plans around in-person training sessions had to be altered in a hurry, thanks to the lockdown. So, we developed a new three-phase program. Each phase focused on a different way to achieve professional growth:
- Phase 1 was designed around sessions led by internal trainers.
- Phase 2 focused on online courses and qualifications that employees could pursue individually.
- Phase 3 called for us to bring in external trainers.
Currently, we’re in Phase 2, with plans for Phase 3 in the works. What has this meant for our employees? And how have we adapted to professional training while in lockdown mode?
Learning and Development at Absolutdata: Lockdown Edition
During the last six months or so, we’ve provided training sessions on machine learning, Python, Power BI, Tableau, Google Analytics, client servicing, storytelling, and more. These topics were strategically decided by our executive leadership team and based on our organizational priorities, current employee skills, and what we will need for future projects. What’s great about these training sessions is that they’re open to employees across departments; for example, an analyst could explore using Power BI to create visualizations or dig into machine learning training.
We’ve also developed special practice-based sessions tailored to the needs of specific teams. These are decided by team leads and managers based on that practice area’s needs.
So, let’s take a look at what we’ve been doing to support learning and development during remote working.
Throughout March, April, and May, our focus was on internal training. Our trainers – all of whom are Absolutdata employees and some of whom were doing this for the first time – hosted their sessions virtually. After each training session was completed, participants were asked to give feedback to the trainer; most of the feedback received has been very positive and encouraging!
Across the world, online training courses have skyrocketed during COVID; the MOOC platform Udemy reports a 425% increase in consumer enrollments and an 80% increase in business and government usage. Once our opening initiative with in-house training slowed down (we’re still offering these internal sessions, just not as frequently), our employees were encouraged to complete online courses from providers like Udemy and Coursera. If they choose, employees can also pursue industry-recognized certifications in different fields, skills, etc.
Both of these endeavors have been quite successful. They’ve enabled our employees to:
- Take their existing skills to the next level
- Obtain industry certifications if they want to
- Explore different technical and functional fields
- Learn new, in-demand skills at their own pace
- Tailor their personal training to meet their own goals
And, organizationally speaking, virtual training sessions and online courses have allowed Absolutdata to:
- Promote a learning culture in our company
- Support the rising Work-from-Home paradigm
- Develop skills needed within our company
- Select topics that we, as an organization or as smaller teams, find interesting
Absolutdata Gurukul: Online + Expert Training
Another part of our learning and development initiative is our Absolutdata Gurukul. In this special webinar series, our seasoned leaders such as Dr. Anil Kaul, CEO and Co-founder; Suhale Kapoor, EVP and Co-founder; Dr. Sudeep Haldar, SVP Growth Analytics and AI, and Ina Nanda, Director of Market Research share deep insight on their subject. This allows employees to deepen their existing knowledge and understand important subjects on a whole new level – helping them transform into more impactful and astute practitioners in their own right. We have also started inviting distinguished external experts for these sessions. Recently, Ms. Payal Koul (among Top 20 women leaders in IT industry) undertook a session on Emotional Intelligence, sharing her knowledge and helpful tips on developing this essential skill needed for a successful career and life. We are looking forward to conduct more such enriching Gurukul sessions.
Grow with Us!
As we continue to adjust to working and learning from home, we’ll continue to adapt our learning and development initiatives. If you’re looking for a place to start or expand your career, check out our Careers page – we love working with intellectually curious, growth-oriented people.