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Investing in Development

Career Development

Investing in Development

In celebration of Learning at Work Week, we spoke to our Head of Future Skills and Learning Architecture - Garth, about how our commitment to developing our people positions us as leaders in the field of learning and development.

Please introduce yourself.

I'm Garth Ledingham, Head of Future Skills, and Learning Architecture. My team's role is to support the Society in defining essential future skills to ensure colleagues can build capability and deliver our blueprint's strategic drivers. My team and I are passionate about designing and delivering effective learning experiences that help colleagues up-skill and re-skill. Investing in learning and development in the workplace is crucial for the growth and success of both colleagues and the organisation as a whole. We work closely with other practices in our People Function, the functional learning teams, and leaders to create an environment where colleagues are supported in the pursuit of their career aspirations.

How do we help people grow in their career journey?

We provide the resources and tools to understand what skills colleagues already have and what knowledge, skills, and behaviours they might want to develop to help improve their performance, productivity, and level of readiness to grow in their careers. Our practice supports line managers and provides digital skill assessments and varied learning pathways so that colleagues can understand how to prioritise their individual learning and track their progress against their development goals. Learning is not just about education, it is also about colleagues identifying the right exposure to the right people to support them, as well as identifying the right experiences to apply their learning into practice. Grow Opportunities (our skills management platform) provides clarity to colleagues on what skills they may want to develop in their role, helps identify a suitable mentor, as well as matches their profile against our internal job postings.

Why is Nationwide different in its approach to developing its workforce?

Nationwide takes a considered approach in its workforce development. It understands that colleagues are at various stages in their development journey and aims to provide structured and timely learning. Its commitment to building essential digital skills is represented by being one of the first signatories to the FutureDotNow Essential Digital Skills Charter. Providing a starting point for colleagues to build their knowledge and skills, our learning and development platforms 'Grow Learning' and 'Grow Opportunities' engage and enable colleagues to understand the type of learning that will best progress their development. We provide a diverse array of learning from bite-size, through to certification and apprenticeships.

Why is it important to invest in development?

Investing in development enables colleagues to understand how to pursue their development goals and outlines what practical steps they can take. By creating the right development environment, colleagues can thrive and feel they can do their best work, share knowledge with others, and turn their career aspirations into successful outcomes. Customers place their confidence in a business that actively invests in its colleagues, as with the diversity of thinking, we can reliably solve customer problems and continue to innovate.

Can you share an example of where you have seen an impact resulting from our investment in development?

Through our Grow Opportunities tool, we have many examples of colleagues raising experiences and small projects to find skilled internal colleagues. This has especially been the case for our employee networks, finding colleagues to help plan, govern, and market network engagement – giving others the chance to pick up new skills and up-skill themselves in an existing field. We’ve even seen it in technical areas such as data dashboards and the use of Power BI – with colleagues able to find relevant learning, seek a mentor, or pick up a new project to test their latest data visualisation skills. Some colleagues have gone on to find permanent opportunities on the tool, all through the use of the skills-matching process and the resources they find on Grow Learning.

Find out more about our Learning and Development benefits here.