Wakefield Council’s People Strategy sets out their commitment in building a culture of lifelong learning, where people are empowered to manage their own learning and develop themselves, leading to increased performance and excellent service delivery.

Wakefield Council created and promoted a new digital resource and online materials for its Learning at Work Week.  

The pandemic meant technology suddenly played a significant role in delivering council’s services. Colleagues needed to quickly learn new skills, changed the way they worked and to connect with each other as they worked remotely. In addition, the learning team wanted to support its workforce mental health and wellbeing and continue to act on its lifelong learning pledge which puts the spotlight on learning in all its forms. 

The team and partnership group working across directorates swiftly created an interactive digital resource using PaperTiger where colleagues could access all the learning information and tools they need in one place. This empowers them to continue learning and develop new skills and allows the council to easily respond to individual and organisational need by posting new sessions and materials.   

The digital resource was promoted for Learning at Work Week. On it, colleagues could find the week’s programme and all the events and sessions. The week’s learning included masterclasses, exercise sessions and newly developed guides including one for managers on musuloskeletal health and wellbeing. To inspire continuous learning journeys, the team created a template to promote reflection where colleagues could capture their learning inspiration and aspirations for the future, as well as record any barriers or challenges they may have. The team also raised the profile of all the learning opportunities that colleagues can access on the council’s online learning portal, Children and Young People’s Learning Academy, and digital learning available through Library Services and Adult Services.    

The week and the digital resource were promoted widely to networked and none-networked colleagues through email, team briefs, managers alerts, and the Chief Executive’s blog. The team engaged directly with apprentices undertaking a range of qualifications and encouraged their use of the resources, which empowered them to inspire their peers. 

The promotional campaign encouraged colleagues to access self-help material and attend live sessions during the week with 350 visits to the digital resource. The flexible design of the digital resource means it is a ‘living resource’ that will grow with new materials and help colleagues build their skills, knowledge and experience. It will contribute to the development of future learning programmes and support the council to deliver more effective and efficient services.