The Masonic Charitable Foundation and RMBI Care Co.’s Learning at Work Week focused on engaging its head office, national and regional teams that had been working remotely for twelve months due to the pandemic. The aim was to support wellbeing, develop talent, and raise the profile of learning and development through meaningful learning activities. To do this, the HR/L&D team set out to demonstrate that learning and training is much more than just classroom sessions, providing fun ways for people to connect with each other, and increase awareness of employee wellbeing and the organisation’s benefit package. They also wanted to give colleagues the opportunity to develop their skills and knowledge for their future careers. 

Each day had a topic – Looking after ourselves, Looking after You, Preparing for your next steps, Showcasing our talent, and Social networking. A sub-theme, Nurturing our talent, ran throughout the week. A structured programme enabled people to plan their day. All the activities were made available as self-directed learning to enable flexible participation. Their existing benefit package was promoted to support financial awareness and savings and raise awareness of medical and counselling support. Sessions were also focused on career development. The HR/L&D team built on the popularity of competitions and opportunities to be creative and promoted a special Treasure Hunt. To help people fit the learning into their day and not feel overwhelmed, the HR/L&D team designed sessions of different lengths including bite-size sessions.  

A teaser email was sent to colleagues asking them to save the date. As well as the usual communication channels, the team used the benefits platform to send push notifications to colleagues with the app. Senior people discussed the week’s plans in the team cascades via video conferencing. 

As a result of the week, colleagues have been more engaged in learning and development conversations leading to a more focused approach aiding planning for the next year. Going forward, there will be more in-house training sessions for all staff to further their skills and knowledge. Colleagues are now more aware of their own wellbeing and how this can be supported and are more prepared when thinking of career moves. The HR/L&D team will use the feedback from the week to improve their learning and development engagement. There has been a noticeable improvement and success in internal applications for roles, which has lowered the cost of recruitment and increased retention of valued staff. The HR/L&D team has demonstrated the value of different methods of learning, which will enable the team to deliver more return on investment from their budget.