The Conference Board of Canada (2009)  The Learning and Development Outlook 2009: Learning in Tough Times
Ottawa: Conference Board of Canada, 72 pages

The Conference Board of Canada has recently released the 10th edition of its bi-annual Learning and Development Survey. The report states that spending on training, learning and development continues to decline slowly in Canadian organizations. In 2008, companies in Canada spent an average of $787 per employee on training, learning and development. In real dollar terms, this level of expenditure represents a 40 per cent decline over the past decade and a half. Compared to our leading competitor nations, Canada’s investment is modest.

The 10th edition of this study found that Canadian organizations are cutting back on investment in employee training, learning and development. Perhaps a reason for this declining level of investment is that Canadian organizations are now learning more informally. Respondents indicate that more than half of the learning in their company in 2008 occurred informally. This report provides insights about how organizations use informal learning to augment employee skills and also includes benchmarks that organizations can use to measure their own training functions as well as a discussion on the trends affecting learning and development in workplaces across Canada.

Unfortunately, at a cost of C$1,075, this report is not accessible to any except the most wealthy organizations, or through libraries that have subscribed to the Conference Board’s e-library.


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