Why it’s Crucial to Integrate Learning & Development into your GMS Implementation

When we work with foundations and grantmaking organizations, our goal is always to ensure you feel empowered to do your work. This goes beyond merely selecting or implementing a new system; we focus on the successful adoption of that tech across your team, now and in the future. Keep your eyes on this space for a real story where we successfully applied this approach for a stellar outcome!

What is Learning and Development?

Learning & development (in a work setting) is a systematic process to enhance skills, knowledge, and competency, resulting in better performance. Specifically, learning comprises the acquisition of knowledge, skills, and attitudes, while development is the broadening and deepening of knowledge in line with one’s own development goals. The ultimate outcome is to empower employees with specific skills to drive better business performance.

Grantbook attributes a great deal of importance to the customized learning plans we design and deliver to our clients, ensuring they are standardized, evidence-based, and consistent with our commitment to meet our clients where they are at and upskill them to feel confident and independent. We design our competency-based services using the Institute for Performance and Learning’s Competencies framework and learning models for adult education.

The Institute for Performance and Learning's framework: Competencies for Performance and Learning Professionals
The Institute for Performance and Learning's Competencies Framework.

Creating a Unique Learning and Development Plan

We understand that each client we work with brings their own unique challenges, constraints and needs–team size, number of grants, system type and ways of working, etc. That’s why we can’t create learning plans in a vacuum; alongside you, we co-create a path forward informed by your desired performance outcomes and current state. Step by step, here is how we work with you to ensure our approach will suit your specific team:

  1. We identify what success looks like for all future users and establish outcomes that we want to achieve with a learning plan.
  2. We design a curriculum that articulates learning objectives informed by those outcomes. The curriculum includes topics (organized by modules) that are specific to the processes executed in the GMS and tailored to users.
  3. We create learning content and learner resources.
  4. We deliver learning through training sessions, open-door support sessions, documentation; we also offer a train-the-trainer model to support foundation teams interested in delivering training themselves.
  5. We help clients evaluate the effectiveness of their learning plan to determine whether the established learning objectives and performance outcomes are being met and where on-going support may be needed.

Applying Learning and Development Plans

We have noticed that our clients’ learning and development needs are varied, spanning multiple stakeholders, stages, and systems. Whether you have an existing Learning Management or Content Management system that you need to revamp, are establishing your first standardized systems training for staff, or are aiming to prepare grantees for future grant cycles and applications, we can help! 

Some of the tactical pieces we have managed for clients in the past include:

  • Onboarding and training for new and future staff
  • Creating learning aids (how-to documents and videos) to support knowledge transfer
  • Embracing learner-centric training using tactics effective with adults
  • Co-creating templates and processes with clients

Our L&D approach is goal-oriented, performance-based and practical; rather than being system-centric and limited in scope, we examine the roles and performance of the entire team, ensuring you are set up for success.

How can a Learning and Development Plan Help you?

Think back over the past tech, process and system changes your organization has attempted. Which ones met resistance? Which ones stuck around? Which ones are technically in place, but adoption rates remain dismal? With a well-prepared and designed learning plan in place, you can ensure everyone on your team understands and leverages the systems you use to increase efficiency, effectiveness and collaboration across your organization.

Are you looking for something a little more concrete? Contact us today for a sample learning plan, or to talk through how an integrated learning & development approach could work for your team.

Joanna Michalski Headshot

Joanna Michalski

Philanthropy Consultant

Learning & Development

Joanna joined Grantbook in 2021 as the training and adoption specialist, helping clients achieve the best possible learning outcomes and experiences. She has over 15 years of experience in the non-profit sector, specializing in training and professional development, volunteerism, and organizational development. She has worked in post-secondary education, healthcare, and community services. Joanna is a life-long volunteer, and is the current board chair of a foundation that aims to develop and improve hospice services in Malawi.