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Bersin & Associates Predicts Leadership Development and Talent Management Programs Will Be Biggest Corporate Talent Investments in 2010

Complimentary annual report details 12 predictions for enterprise learning and talent management in 2010

Oakland, CA – December 22, 2009 – Bersin & Associates, the only research and advisory firm focused solely on enterprise learning, talent management, and talent acquisition, today announced the availability of its new report, Enterprise Learning and Talent Management 2010: Predictions for the Coming Year. The complimentary, 35-page report is an annual rundown from Josh Bersin, president, on the key business, training and talent management trends and factors for learning and HR organizations to consider in planning and budgeting for the year ahead.

The special report is based on Bersin & Associates’ research initiatives conducted throughout 2009 and references top-level findings from most major studies. The report includes charts and graphs to support key points.

While the U.S. unemployment rate remains high, Bersin & Associates research shows increasing business optimism. “We’re emerging from the longest and deepest global recession since the 1930s and are just starting to see the tipping point,” said Josh Bersin. “Our profile of business growth remains flat from last quarter, yet 41 percent of organizations surveyed are forecasting growth within the next six months. For the last 18 months, our research members have focused on restructuring, consolidation and cost-reduction. But now, we’re seeing a focus on building programs that drive innovation and customer focus. We believe this is a good sign – and will bring talent management even closer to the business.”

The twelve predictions included in the 2010 report relate to integrated talent management, leadership development, knowledge management, performance consulting, community management, deep skills specialization, measurement strategies and social networking for talent acquisition. Among them:

Integrated talent management discussion will reach the boardroom. Bersin & Associates’ study, The 2009 Talent Management Factbook, proved that talent management matters. Organizations with superior talent management strategies outperform their peers across a range of measures – from greater employee productivity to reduced employee turnover to ability to endure difficult economic cycles. Today, more than 35 percent of all large organizations have a talent management leader and almost one-third have a strong talent strategy in place.

High-impact leadership development programs will focus on first-line management. First-line managers typically run business operations and are the ones who engage and incent employees to succeed. In customer-facing roles, first-line managers often directly influence customer satisfaction and millions of dollars of revenue. Yet research respondents rated first-line supervisors as “less capable” than entry-level employees. In 2010, high-performing organizations will invest the time, money and resources to create robust first-line management programs.

L&D will shift its focus from e-learning to "we-learning." Skills development and organizational learning are complex – and must be addressed with a combination of formal and informal methods. In 2010, organizations will begin to embrace “we-learning” – a range of informal learning strategies – to complement and enhance current training. Organizations will implement networks, communities of practice, wikis, blogs, discussion groups and expert directories to help employees solve problems faster while bringing new efficiencies to learning.

Organizations with deep skills development strategies will continue to outperform their competition. Businesses must always innovate – in products, processes, customer intelligence and market awareness – and these innovations come from highly skilled people. But many companies have lost specialized and expert employees as a result of layoffs and retirements. To compete, organizations must drive professional career programs, mentoring, knowledge-sharing, rewards, job rotation and succession programs that reward deep levels of expertise.

To download a complimentary copy of Enterprise Learning and Talent Management 2010: Predictions for the Coming Year, go to http://marketing.bersin.com/Predictions_2010.html.

About Bersin & Associates

Bersin & Associates is the only research and advisory firm focused solely on research in enterprise learning, talent management, and talent acquisition. The company’s WhatWorks® membership program offers actionable guidance, improves operational effectiveness, and delivers business impact to companies in all industry segments.

Bersin & Associates research members gain access to a comprehensive library of best practices, case studies, benchmarks, and in-depth market analyses designed to assist professionals in making fast and confident decisions. Members also have direct access to analysts and a wide range of tested tools and models to address both strategic and day-to-day challenges.

More than 5,000 organizations worldwide have used Bersin & Associates’ research and advisory services to guide talent and corporate learning strategies. Research areas include planning and strategy, learning programs and delivery, talent management, leadership development and succession planning, talent acquisition, technology and infrastructure, informal learning, social networking, measurement and analytics.

For more information, go to www.bersin.com or call 561 455 0622, extension 223.