Training budget cuts predicted by learning and development managers

Many training and learning and development (L&D) managers expect their budgets to be cut over the next 12 months.

A survey of 120 of them found that 44% expected cuts, while 54% expected budgets to remain stable and just 2% expected an increase.

Respondents were also asked to say which areas of spending would be likely to be cut: 53% said non-skill specific training 33% said soft skills 32% said team building, and 13% diversity (those polled could give more than one answer to the question).

Technical skills and leadership development were the two training areas least likely to be affected by budgetary cuts, said poll organiser Common Purpose, which specialises in leadership development training.

It added that 53% of those polled think L&D cuts “will have a negative impact in the longer term”.

It quoted one training manager as saying: “If you want to cut a leg off your organisation for short-term gain, then cut back on training. If you want your organisation to continue to flourish during an economic cut-back, maintain training standards and levels.”

Common Purpose chief executive Julia Middleton said: “As ecopnomic storm clouds gather, many organistaions cut their L&D budgets in a misinformed attempt to see them through the tough times. Developing staff can wait for a while can’t it?

“Sadly not. This policy sends a pretty clear message to the people whose talent is the most highly valued, that the organisation’s commitment to their L&D is short-term and wafer thin.”

The research was based on an online poll of 120 training and L&D managers: 46% of respondents worked in the public sector, 34% in the private sector, while 22% were employed by not-for-profit organisations.

Recently another report said the UK was top of the European charts for training spend.

Read: How to get the most from your training budget.

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