Training spend in 2009: middle managers win, coaching loses

Training spend in 2009 will hold steady with middle managers a main focus, but coaching will suffer, claimed a survey published today.

The report, from e-learning specialist Cegos, said 44% of 254 learning and development (L&D) professionals polled said they expected their training budgets to remain much the same in 2009 as in 2008, while 24% expect them to rise and 17% to fall.

Some 44% of respondents said developing middle managers would be the top priority for skills development in 2009, while 24% said their organisations would focus on upskilling senior executives. Sales training should benefit next year with 25% of respondents saying their organisations would spend more on that area in 2009.

But 22% of those polled said their employers will spend less on coaching next year, especially for senior staff. And 25% said spending on developing trainers will fall in 2009.

Cegos UK managing director Francis Marshall said: “It’s reassuring to see that many companies are recognising it is even more important to develop talent in these hard times. Companies that invest in developing core professional skills for example will win through when the economy recovers.”

The survey found that the use of e-learning will rise next year with 36% of respondents saying their organisations will increase the use of that medium. However face-to-face learning will still be the most widely-used learning medium.

Also, said the poll, serious training games will be used by 27% of respondents’ organisations next year.

The survey was based on responses by 254 L&D managers who completed questionnaires at last month’s World of Learning exhibition or online at Cegos’s website.

Other training budget surveys have come up with widely differing forecasts. And media skills training budgets are expected to fall dramatically next year.




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