No soft skills development in past 12 months for many workers.

Engagement potential.

E-learning specialists, GoodHabitz, has found that 45 per cent of UK workers have had no soft skills development offered to them in the past 12 months. Many organisations and surveys have shown a dynamic link between soft skills learning and development opportunities and employee satisfaction and motivation. However this is not being pursued by many UK employers. 

The GoodHabitz 2020 Trend Report surveyed working age adults in the UK and found 80 per cent thought that developing soft skills like communication skills, productivity, leadership and teamworking was very important. Those who had completed a soft skills training course in the last 12 months were much more satisfied with their employer, more motivated and said they enjoyed their jobs significantly more. They also said it improved their performance, with 63 per cent of completers saying it had a positive effect on their ability to succeed at work.

However, the results showed that almost half of employees in the study had not been offered a chance to develop soft skills. 45 per cent had not done one of more soft skills training courses in the past year. This reflects other industry research which found that over 40 per cent of workers had not been offered any learning opportunities during a 12-month period.

Entrepreneur and employee engagement expert, Glenn Elliot commented: “Some of the attributes of engagement – going the extra mile, fostering a good working environment, being motivated and feeling positive, are all connected to personal development opportunities. It makes complete sense because skills like people management, communication, relationship building and leadership are much harder to develop than technical skills, so when a company invests in its workforce and helps them with the hard stuff, you will see an improvement in motivation and employee engagement.”

The GoodHabitz survey results showed that employees who attended one or more soft skill training courses in the past year were more satisfied with their employer (7.7 out of 10) than those who didn’t (7.3 out of 10). They are more motivated, scoring 7.9 vs 7.6) and they enjoy their job more (4.1 vs 3.9) out of 5.

Country Director UK and Ireland at GoodHabitz, Stephen Humphreys added: “We see the link between learning and engagement all the time with our customers, who report that levels of engagement and retention increase after they begin offering soft skills learning. Employee engagement is actually very important metric for determining the effectiveness of an L&D programme.”

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