The True Value of Self Service

Published Wednesday, August 27, 2014 3:19 PM by Wearev1, Author

Last time we spoke (The Cost Of Three Minutes), our theme was value. We had shared some fascinating data on what we genuinely think an L&D team looking after 500 learners and an average of 50 courses for that cohort of staff is ‘spending,’ time-wise, per year on repetitive admin course and booking tasks – which added up to an astonishing 1.5 person-years!

This was some information that we shared on a recent V1 LTM webinar (if you are not keeping up with our webinars, I would strongly encourage you to; they are all about educating the market and debating the issues that matter to all of us in Learning and Training support, (they are not overt sales pitches!).

We will be hosting some more webinars over the next few weeks and the next theme I want to talk to you about which is relevant to the webinars and our on-going conversation on these blogs, is empowerment.

Let’s switch for a second from thinking about the L&D team, as we did in the last blog, to thinking about our colleagues in the rest of the business.

What is it we are trying to do for them, in terms of learning and development?

I think most of us would agree we’d see our contribution as: if they are new joiners, getting them connected and involved in the rest of the company; getting them qualified in core health and safety or compliance strictures, very much a moving target there, but most of all, keeping them on the life-long/career-long learning pathway… helping to continue to enhance and build their skills, allowing them to progress in their job roles (or extend and advance up), making them more valuable employees.


But, why are you doing all that – and not allowing them to do it for themselves?

The real meaning of ‘self-service’?

Let’s pull back for a second and look at the wider world, the one that we all live in. It’s a world of ubiquitous Internet access and computing power that would simply be staggering to the first pioneers of business ‘data processing.’ Think about the power and reach of modern communications, too.

It’s also a world where we can and do expect to book our own train travel, pay our council tax at our own convenience, access our bank balance at 2 in the morning if we feel like it– self service, in other words.

We like self-service – as individuals, as consumers. It makes us feel we are more in control and that we can maximise our increasingly precious time.

We also like self service as employees. We like being able to access the HR system to find out about our company benefits, many organisations put great value on fostering collaboration and communication with systems such as SharePoint or an intranet; we want to use our computers to be able to access the latest product price on whilst on the road or when with a prospect, we like to be able to work from home if we need to but still feel 100% part of the team. Heck, some of us even like to order our clothes, organic veggies, movies and presents for Gran from our laptops in our pyjamas, right?

Why aren’t we letting people do this when it comes to something as vital and as central to their careers and daily work lives as their training, education and development?

Tailorable workflows

Take someone who’s just joined. Imagine if, when they log into the system for the first time, they were able to see, mapped out for them, with easy to click and work through calendars, a set of courses they have to do as new joiners (induction, HSE, legal), as well as a suggested L&D pathway that they can start thinking about immediately?

Think about how much better that employee will feel on their first day, which is hectic enough, if they know that their training is already being thought about and set up – and isn’t going to be something they are going to have to chase their line manager  about (think, endless emails) or worse, their line manager is going to have to chase them about (again, think endless emails!).

Empowerment, in other words.

And what’s really great is that this isn’t science fiction – this is what a modern L&D platform with workflow offers. A solution such as V1 LTM, that you can tailor yourself.

Don’t you think it’s about time you started getting L&D on the same page as the rest of the modern world – and make it something that works with the user, in the way they want, not as something imposed on them?

I think that’s a really cool way of thinking about self-service. What do you think?

Tell me – I’d be really interested!


Mark Tew
V1 Business Manager

The True Value of Self Service by