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Bersin & Associates Introduces Comprehensive New Research, The High-Impact Learning Organization: WhatWorks® in the Management, Governance, and Operations of Modern Corporate Training

Study reveals significant change in corporate training: New strategies formulti-generational workforces, unique solutions for learning on-demand, evolving role of the LMS, demand for social networking, integration with talent management, and globalization
Oakland, CA – May 22, 2008 – Bersin & Associates, the only research and advisory firm solely focused on What Works® in enterprise learning and talent management, today announced the availability of The High-Impact Learning Organization: WhatWorks® in the Management, Governance, and Operations of Modern Corporate Training. This exhaustive research study examines trends, best practices, and strategic solutions in today’s modern training organization. It focuses in particular on the specific processes and strategies that drive high levels of efficiency and business impact.

“Corporate learning organizations have to continually re-invent themselves to keep up with changes in the business climate, workforce demographics, technologies, and organizational needs,” said Josh Bersin, president. “After studying this market for more than five years, we see that the best practices, disciplines, technologies, and strategies for today’s high-impact corporate training have dramatically changed.”

The study, an update of the company’s groundbreaking 2005 study on the topic – and the most widely referenced study in the company’s history, is based on a survey of more than 750 learning executives, approximately 100 in-depth interviews with senior learning leaders, and three years of extensive research.

In 350-plus pages, the research study discusses trends, best practices, and solutions to the key issues facing today’s corporate training: organizational structure, business alignment, leadership, governance, program measurement, learning architectures, integration with talent management, outsourcing, globalization, and the multi-generational workforce. In addition, this research provides valuable in-depth analysis and case studies on the implementation of collaborative learning, e-learning, content management, content re-use, and learning on-demand.

Bersin & Associates will be issuing a series of news advisories in coming weeks to highlight research and analysis from the study. For an audio overview, go to A detailed description of the study, along with a table of contents, is available at Following are representative findings:

Of the top 18 learning processes that drive greatest business impact, the development of a strong learning culture tops the list. The study discusses this topic in detail and lists 50 key elements of a high-impact learning culture.

  • In the face of tremendous demand for integrated talent management, the integration of learning with performance management and the re-centralization of learning operations are now essential best practices for business impact.
  • Of the 750-plus organizations studied, 80 were characterized as particularly effective learning organizations. These exemplary, high-impact organizations are primarily in the banking and finance, business services, telecommunications, technology, and insurance industries. Segments that lag in learning maturity include transportation, media and entertainment, manufacturing, and state and local governments.
  • Money is important but not the ultimate determinant in achieving business impact. The research clearly found that learning effectiveness and efficiency do not directly correlate to budget or spending per learner. Rather, organizations with average or even below-average budgets can generate two- to three-times greater return through more rigorous organization design, governance, and operations.
  • The disciplines and strategies for high-impact corporate learning have changed. Today’s modern training organizations must go far beyond instructional design and delivery and focus instead on building expertise in information architecture, strategic competencies, content management, organizational culture, and end-to-end talent management.

The High-Impact Learning Organization is available to Bersin & Associates research members at no cost. Non-members can purchase the study for $1,595. For purchasing details, go to Josh Bersin will discuss the research in an upcoming webinars on Friday, June 20, at 2:00 p.m. ET. To register, go to


About Bersin & Associates

Bersin & Associates is the only research and advisory services firm focused solely on research in enterprise learning and talent management. Bersin & Associates’ WhatWorks® research and research-based services are designed to deliver actionable direction and to help improve operational effectiveness and business impact.

Bersin & Associates research members gain access to a comprehensive library of best practices, case studies, benchmarks, and in-depth market analyses designed to guide professionals in making fast and confident decisions. Research areas include planning and strategy, learning programs and delivery, talent management, technology and infrastructure, and measurement and analytics. Member benefits include in-depth advisory services, access to proprietary webcasts, on-site analyst visits, and workshops. The company also offers a variety of strategic services for learning and talent management organizations. For more information, go to or call 561 455 0622.