The pandemic has significantly elevated the learning and development organization’s strategic profile within the business. Often regarded in the past as a cost center, the learning and development organization now has an important seat at the strategy table. More than 62% of companies say that the pandemic has given the learning and development organization more visibility and a bigger role in decision-making across the business and/or made the learning and development organization more closely integrated with the C-Suite.

To make the most of this transformation — and to make it last — the learning and development organization must prove to be a strong strategic ally to the business. This means the learning and development organization needs to take a closer look at the learning strategy and how it aligns with the goals of the business. The best way to ensure alignment is with data — lots of data.

The problem is that the learning and development organization is not known for their prowess in data and analytics. For most learning and development teams, managing and analyzing data is not part of their core skills and competencies. For years, better reporting and analytics has been among the top three requirements for learning and development organizations seeking new learning technology and one of the top three reasons changing technology. A big driver is the need for technology that is simple and more intuitive to use, making it easier for non-data scientists to handle the kind of questions only data can answer.

In Brandon Hall Group’s study, People Data, Analytics and Algorithms, 71% of organizations responded that it was either highly important or critical to collect and analyze data around the

depth and retention of learning. With most organizations only collecting learning completion rates and smile sheets it can be difficult, if not impossible, to conduct a meaningful data analysis.

In addition to building more data and analytics skills within the learning function, organizations must also evaluate the technologies they use to collect and analyze learning data. Learning leaders must leverage technology to combine other sources of employee data with learning data to provide real business insights.

We are hosting a webinar with learning data specialists, Cognota, to dig into what data the learning and development organization should be capturing and how to use it. We will also review what companies should look for when evaluating tools and technologies for data analysis. The entire business runs on data, which makes these tools and skills critical for the learning and development organization.

David Wentworth, Principal Learning Analyst, Brandon Hall Group

 About Brandon Hall Group Inc. 

Brandon Hall Group is the only professional development company that offers data, research, insights and certification to Learning and Talent executives and organizations. The best minds in Human Capital Management (HCM) choose Brandon Hall Group to help them create future-proof employee development plans for the new era. For over 28 years, we have empowered, recognized and certified excellence in organizations around the world influencing the development of over 10,000,000 employees and executives. Our HCM Excellence Awards was the first to recognize organizations for learning and talent and is the gold standard, known as the “Academy Awards of Human Capital Management.” Our cloud-based platform delivers evidence-based insights in the areas of Learning and Development, Talent Management, Leadership Development, Diversity and Inclusion, Talent Acquisition and HR/Workforce Management for corporate organizations and HCM solution providers. To learn more, visit For information on Brandon Hall Group’s research and how we can assist your organization, please visit

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David Wentworth

David Wentworth has been a senior research analyst in the human capital field since 2005 and joined the Brandon Hall Group in 2013. He has authored reports and articles on various human capital subjects with an emphasis on workforce technology. He has contributed to several reports published by ASTD, including authoring Mobile Learning: Learning in the Palm of Your Hand, The Rise of Social Media: Enhancing Collaboration and Productivity Across Generations, and Instructional Systems Design Today and in the Future. His work has also appeared in Compensation & Benefits Review and T+D Magazine.