Your strategic L&D partnership is a recipe for organizational success

Strategic planning and consulting aren’t just buzzwords your learning and development (L&D) department tosses around—they are critical components for your long-term organizational success and sustainability.

As an L&D professional, you know eLearning's immense impact on your organization’s growth, performance, and talent retention. However, in today's dynamic business landscape, simply providing training programs is not enough.

Sometimes, driving organizational growth and success requires you to step back and examine your business goals and learning initiatives through a broader strategic lens.

Of course, this can prove to be a challenge between day-to-day operations of L&D and tactical tasks.

So, how do you gain a more holistic view of your L&D initiatives?

That’s where strategic planning and consulting comes in.

Understanding strategic planning and consulting for L&D

In a nutshell, business intelligence refers to collecting, analyzing, and visualizing data to gain valuable insights into business operations.

Together, these processes offer organizations a comprehensive view of their goals and vision, enabling them to assess the effectiveness of current training initiatives, identify areas misaligned with long-term objectives, and chart a course for new strategies to ensure sustained success.

Of course, before exploring how planning and consulting can improve your business outcomes, we must first understand what they are and how they work together.

What is strategic consulting?

Consulting is often the initial step in the strategic journey. Organizations leverage consulting services to dissect the nuances of particular job roles, pinpoint the exact skills and competencies necessary for peak performance, and map these requirements to learning objectives, ensuring that training efforts are not only relevant but also focused on equipping employees with the proficiencies needed to excel in their roles. Through close collaboration with strategic partners, L&D teams finely tune their training initiatives – enhancing employee capabilities and directly driving the achievement of organizational objectives.

What is strategic planning?

Once an organization has collaborated with an L&D partner and evaluated its learning objectives, strategic planning follows. At its core, strategic planning involves a systematic and deliberate process of defining an organization’s long-term learning goals and outlining a clear path to achieve them.  It typically begins with a comprehensive training audit to recognize workforce strengths, areas for improvement, opportunities, and potential risks. Subsequently, it entails setting precise learning objectives that guide resource allocation and efforts toward desired outcomes.

Essentially, strategic planning sets the stage for your training efforts, offering the highest potential for success through a purposeful and focused approach.

How do these processes work together to set up your L&D team for success?

Combining the structured framework of strategic planning with the specialized insights and guidance offered by consulting, organizations can create customized learning solutions, optimize resource allocation, maintain relevance in the face of changing trends, and drive meaningful growth within their organization's learning landscape.

Process flow of strategic planning and consulting, as listed below.

While each of these processes can function independently, collaborating with a strategic partner to execute them provides several compelling advantages, including:

Targeted Expertise

Strategic partners bring specialized knowledge and insights to your organization, focusing on specific areas that require attention. Whether engagement strategies, learning system selection, analytics and data-driven insights, curriculum planning, LMS implementation, knowledge management, or general consulting, you get targeted solutions from experienced professionals.

Custom Solutions

Each organization faces unique challenges and objectives. Planning and consulting services can help tailor solutions to your organizational needs, offering personalized recommendations that address your workforce's skill gaps and align with your company's long-term vision.

Focus on Results

Strategic planning and consulting are results-oriented, guided by robust evaluation criteria and performance metrics. Not only do experts leverage data and analytics to extract valuable insights, showcasing the impact of your training to stakeholders and leadership, but their objective perspective uncovers hidden patterns, enriching your understanding of the data and empowering you to refine training strategies, make informed decisions, and optimize your approach for maximum effectiveness.

Seamless Implementation

Implementing L&D strategies can be complex and resource-intensive. Luckily, your strategic partner can help guide your team through this process, offering valuable coaching and insights that facilitate the integration of your learning initiatives with your existing systems.

Your strategic partner can coach you on techniques to harmonize your training ecosystem with organizational procedures, helping you navigate challenges and potential pitfalls while driving the project forward efficiently. In essence, strategic experts provide additional support, extending your team's capabilities for a concentrated period.

Long-term Partnership

Beyond short-term planning, leveraging strategic services offers the potential for long-term partnerships. L&D partners become strategic allies, understanding your organization's needs and supporting your growth journey over time.

What organizational challenges can my L&D team overcome with planning and consulting?

From rapidly changing learning trends and shifting business priorities to limited resources and the constant need to enhance effectiveness and measure learning ROI, L&D teams face many challenges that can hinder their ability to deliver impactful training initiatives.

The good news is planning and consulting can turn these obstacles into opportunities for growth and success. Here’s how:

Challenge #1: Rapidly changing learning trends and shifting business priorities

Training programs must remain agile with technology advancements, market shifts, and changing workforce demographics. Otherwise, they risk becoming outdated, leading to disconnected training outcomes and missed organizational growth and success opportunities.

Solution: Working with an expert in L&D strategy allows your team to identify emerging trends proactively, anticipate evolving business needs, and implement practical processes like regular learning needs assessments to ensure your training initiatives remain relevant and current to effectively contribute to achieving business objectives.

Challenge #2: Limited resources and budget constraints

Limited resources and budget constraints can be significant roadblocks for L&D teams, often forcing them to make tough decisions about where to allocate their efforts. 

Solution: Strategically defined objectives help optimize resource allocation by identifying critical training needs and prioritizing high-impact initiatives. By focusing on essential skills and knowledge gaps, your team can deliver targeted training that maximizes the impact of each investment.

Challenge # 3: Improving training program effectiveness and measuring learning ROI.

Without clear metrics and evaluation methods, it becomes challenging to gauge the success of training initiatives.

Solution: Establishing clear evaluation criteria before launching your training initiatives allows you to accurately measure learning effectiveness and demonstrate the value of your training programs to stakeholders and leadership.

Ultimately, strategic planning and consulting equip your L&D team with the tools and insights to overcome L&D challenges and foster success in the ever-changing learning landscape. By proactively addressing emerging trends, optimizing resources, and measuring impact, you can future-proof your training initiatives and drive meaningful growth within your organization.

Embrace the future with confidence. Let us help you transform your L&D efforts through strategic planning today!

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What strategic projects can transform your existing L&D initiatives?

Enhancing employee performance and organizational growth often requires more than just training programs. It involves a strategic assessment to pinpoint precisely where and how training interventions can align with broader business objectives. 

But training isn't a catch-all solution. Sometimes, driving organizational growth requires redefining engagement strategies, selecting the right learning platforms, leveraging data insights, or addressing knowledge gaps more effectively. 

Your strategic partner can help you identify the most effective strategies and initiatives, pinpointing precisely where and how your training and knowledge efforts can generate a positive impact on your organization. 

Now, let's delve into various L&D projects that can benefit from external strategic planning and consulting – by working with a strategic L&D partner.

L&D engagement strategies

A strategic partner can help tailor learning experiences to resonate with learners, ensuring they understand how their growth contributes to the organization's success. 

By intertwining personal development aspirations with the broader mission, engagement strategies become a catalyst for enhanced learning outcomes and training ROI.

Learning system or platform selection

Your partner can guide you through choosing the best-fit learning management system (LMS), learning experience platform (LXP), or eLearning content library for your organization’s unique learning needs, budget, technical requirements, and business goals. 

Additionally, they can assist in crafting comprehensive Request for Information (RFI) or Request for Proposal (RFP) documents to facilitate the selection of the most suitable tools and vendors for your unique training ecosystem.

Learning system implementation

From self-implementation to white-glove experience, strategic partners offer tailored solutions to your organization's needs. 

When you employ strategic planning services, Implementation Managers will guide you through a seamless integration process, ensuring optimal configuration, technical troubleshooting, and personalized training. 

Learning system administration

Strategic partners offer specialized system administration services to empower your L&D team to focus on what truly matters—enhancing training and development outcomes. 

Whether managing user accounts, optimizing content organization, or ensuring smooth technical operations, they take care of the intricate details. 

With our support, your L&D team can operate efficiently, maximizing the potential of your learning management system (LMS) or learning experience platform (LXP).

eLearning curriculum planning

Organizations leverage strategic planning and consulting services to help design and develop comprehensive and relevant learning programs that align with your organization's objectives and address specific learning objectives.

Learning analytics and data-driven insights

Strategic partners specialize in defining KPIs, designing measurement frameworks, and implementing data collection strategies that lay the foundation for data-driven insights in your learning initiatives. 

By identifying measurement needs, partners ensure data is collected effectively. With this groundwork in place, they can then guide the extraction of meaningful insights from your data, enabling you to make informed decisions, refine strategies, and enhance your training programs based on evidence-backed results.

Addressing knowledge gaps

Strategic planning and consulting are essential for identifying and addressing knowledge gaps that hinder growth and effectiveness. 

Your partner conducts thorough knowledge assessments to pinpoint areas where employees lack crucial information or skills. 

Using these insights, they can help create tailored training programs and resources to bridge these gaps, equipping your workforce with the needed expertise. 

Additionally, your partner guides knowledge retention strategies, preserving insights and passing them on as your workforce evolves. This ensures your organization's knowledge remains robust, supporting long-term success and alignment with business objectives.

Help system (software) project management

A strategic partner can work with you to oversee software projects related to help systems, ensuring they are delivered on time and implemented successfully. 

Their approach typically involves comprehensive planning, precise execution, and rigorous quality assurance so that the help system enhances user experiences, simplifies problem-solving, and aligns seamlessly with the software application's functionality.

General consulting for your eLearning initiatives

General consulting and planning projects can consist of one or many different elements, including eLearning KPIs and goal-setting exercises, RFP and RFI guidance and creation, change management planning, and nearly anything else you require. 

The goal of any general consulting project is to offer valuable insights and recommendations to help optimize all aspects of your L&D initiatives.

Can a strategic partner help with more complex projects? 


While some businesses may seek strategic planning and consulting services for operational tasks like learning system selection and program optimization – your strategic partner can customize your consulting project to help you navigate even the most complex organizational needs, including:

Creating and maintaining skills and competency inventories

By conducting thorough assessments of the various job roles in your organization, strategic partners can help create and maintain comprehensive lists detailing the skills, knowledge, and competencies needed for each position. 

Using this data, a strategic partner can assist with assessing your employees’ current skills and pinpointing any performance gaps to ensure your workforce has the right capabilities for success. Ultimately, this process supports recruitment, training, and talent management, aligning skills with organizational goals for success.

Developing performance reward systems

Organizations may leverage strategic services to design and implement effective performance reward systems. This process involves developing a framework that aligns employee performance with tangible rewards, such as bonuses, promotions, or recognition programs. 

Organizations may leverage strategic services to design and implement effective performance reward systems. This process involves developing a framework that aligns employee performance with tangible rewards, such as bonuses, promotions, or recognition programs. 

Enhance performance review processes

A strategic partner can work with you to create structured and objective evaluation criteria, helping to ensure that performance assessments are fair, consistent, and aligned with organizational goals. 

Additionally, strategic partners can provide guidance on feedback mechanisms and employee development plans, making the performance review process a valuable tool for identifying areas of improvement and fostering professional growth.

Have a specific project in mind? Get in touch! We’d be happy to explore how our Strategic Execution team can help you.

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How will a strategic L&D partner work with your organization?

We’ve already established what strategic planning and consulting are and the types of organizational challenges that may benefit from the guidance of an L&D expert.

But what does working with a strategic partner entail exactly?

Steps of working with a strategic partner, as listed below.

Here are some steps your partner may take as you embark on your planning and consulting journey.

Step One: Understand your organizational needs

The journey begins with deeply understanding your organization's pain points and challenges. Your strategic partner works closely with you to identify the specific issues and needs that have prompted your search for solutions.

Step Two: Assess your current L&D landscape

With a clear understanding of your pain points, the next step involves thoroughly assessing your organization's current landscape. This analysis goes beyond just assessing your L&D landscape; it involves evaluating existing processes, systems, and performance metrics to gain a holistic view of your organization's operations.

This broader perspective allows your partner to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and areas for improvement across the organization, aligning it with your broader organizational objectives.

Ultimately, this assessment will be the foundation for your strategic planning and consulting efforts.

Step Three: Define your organizational objectives

Your strategic partner guides open communication and collaboration with key stakeholders, including department heads, HR professionals, and senior leadership, to establish clear and actionable organizational objectives. 

This process entails defining the future state of your organization and aligning it with the desired organizational objectives. It ensures that your objectives are intricately tied to the overarching organizational goals, setting the stage for a comprehensive strategic plan that bridges the gap between your current state and the envisioned future state. This holistic approach ensures that your efforts align closely with your organization's strategic direction.

Step Four: Perform a gap analysis

After gathering insights into your current state and understanding your organizational objectives, your strategic partner conducts a gap analysis. This analysis identifies the discrepancies between your current state and your desired future state. It serves as the foundation for creating a strategic plan outlining how to bridge these gaps effectively.

Step Five: Identify strategic projects

Based on the gap analysis, your strategic partner helps identify the most impactful strategic projects. Your partner will determine whether you need comprehensive strategic planning services or focused consulting on specific challenges or projects. This step typically involves selecting the actions to be taken, delivering them, and measuring their impact.

Ready to start your strategic L&D partnership? Let us help you uncover impactful strategic L&D projects to help your organization solve its training challenges and improve its bottom line.

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Should you hire a strategic L&D partner or use in-house resources?

In some cases, keeping your strategic planning journey in-house may be tempting – particularly since it may seem more cost-effective at first glance.

However, managing industry changes, budgets and timelines,  knowledge sharing, and other duties involved in effective strategic planning may get overwhelming, among other tasks flooding your plate.

The good news is a dedicated L&D partner takes care of your strategic needs, so you don’t have to. 

Benefits of working with a strategic L&D partner

Fresh External Insights

Engaging a strategic partner brings the advantage of an impartial, external viewpoint that can uncover potential risks, crucial considerations, or innovative approaches that organizations might overlook when operating independently. 

This fresh perspective is valuable in refining your L&D strategies, ensuring a well-rounded approach capitalizing on insights gained from external successes and challenges.

Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing

Benefit from collaborative brainstorming sessions and knowledge sharing with experts dedicated to achieving your organization's learning objectives.

Cost and Resource Optimization

Leveraging strategic planning and consulting services allows for more efficient allocation of resources and cost optimization. Their expertise streamlines processes, potentially reducing expenses and project timelines, ultimately maximizing the value of your investment.

Scalability and Flexibility

With a strategic partner, your L&D strategies can adapt to changing circumstances and scale as needed. Their expertise ensures your initiatives remain relevant, effective, and agile in a dynamic environment.

Time Savings and Efficiency

With the support of a dedicated eLearning partner, you can streamline your decision-making, reduce trial-and-error cycles, and enhance overall efficiency, saving you valuable time.

While internal planning is a viable option, when you partner with a strategic expert, you can maximize the impact of your project planning efforts and ensure that your organization's Learning and Development journey is a resounding success!

 Now, let's discover and choose the perfect eLearning partner for your needs.

Qualities to look for in your strategic L&D partner

As you embark on the journey to find the right eLearning partner for your organization, it's crucial to consider several key factors. Evaluating these aspects will ensure that you choose a partner who aligns with your organization's unique needs and can drive the success of your L&D initiatives.

  • Deep understanding of the L&D landscape
    Look for partners who comprehend industry trends and emerging technologies and exhibit an unwavering commitment to continuous learning and staying updated with best practices. This dedication ensures that your chosen partner can provide valuable insights, innovative solutions, and steadfast support in achieving your organization's Learning and Development objectives.
  • Cross-industry experience
    Consider partners with a wealth of experience within your organization's industry and other diverse industries. Cross-industry exposure can lead to unique insights and innovative solutions that may not be apparent from a singular industry perspective. Moreover, this breadth of experience allows your partner to adapt and apply best practices and lessons learned from different contexts to your specific L&D challenges, fostering creativity and effective problem-solving.
  • Expertise in learning management systems
    Assess the candidate's proficiency in learning management systems, considering their ability to integrate with your current systems seamlessly. An adept eLearning partner will optimize training while minimizing disruption and boosting effectiveness.
  • Methodologies for measuring KPIs and analytics
    Inquire about the partner's methods for measuring the impact of L&D initiatives. An effective partner should demonstrate the ability to test correlations between your organizational goals, learning outcomes, and KPIs to uncover hidden patterns and connections that drive actionable insights for your training initiatives.
  • Collaborative communication throughout the process
    Assess the partner's collaborative communication, prioritizing openness and transparency during strategic planning. Select a responsive partner who provides ongoing support and promptly addresses questions, concerns, or challenges.
  • Navigating decisions, budgets, and timelines
    An essential aspect of a capable partner is their proficiency in guiding stakeholders through critical decisions while managing resources, budgets, and project timelines. This aptitude encompasses project management skills that ensure seamless execution without compromising quality or delivery.

With this evaluation criteria, you can confidently select the right eLearning partner to help achieve your organization's Learning and Development goals. 

Why navigate project planning alone? Partner with our experienced eLearning experts and let us handle the process for you.

We can help with that

How Neovation helps with your strategic L&D initiatives, and how much does it cost?

In short? Neovation can assist — no matter your organization’s strategic need!

Our experts stand ready to support your organization in L&D projects, including but not limited to

  • Comprehensive training needs assessment
  • Custom eLearning curriculum planning, design, and development
  • Learning system selection, implementation, and administration
  • Re-configuration and optimization of existing learning management systems 
  • Help system (software) project management
  • Continuous learning and knowledge retention campaigns
  • Knowledge management solutions
  • Visual, data-informed decision-making with learning analytics

By partnering with Neovation, you gain access to a wealth of expertise and experience.  We understand the intricate challenges L&D teams face, and we're dedicated to providing solutions that foster employee growth, enhance performance, better business outcomes, and drive meaningful results.

Neovation team members, Roberto, Chris, Alli, and Jodane.

Ready to embark on this transformative journey together? We’d love to hear from you!

How much does it cost to work with Neovation as your strategic L&D partner?

Typically, the fees associated with a strategic project range from $5,000–$30,000.

However, costs may vary based on the scope and complexity of a project – and the range should only be used as an estimation.

Before any project, we start with a conversation about your organizational goals and targets. This initial discussion helps us better understand your needs. It ensures that we formulate a plan of action that meets your desired learning and organizational objectives before any of your initiatives start.

Ultimately, we aim to work closely with you to deliver an impactful eLearning solution that aligns with your needs and budget and drives success for your organization's L&D endeavors. 

Please contact us for detailed pricing information and to discuss your project requirements. 

Our eLearning experts have years of experience and a passion for empowering the people within organizations through learning. Whether you need targeted assessments, comprehensive curriculum development, learning technology expertise, or data-driven insights, we can help you achieve your L&D goals.

Why wait to unlock your organization’s potential? We’d love to discuss your organization's unique needs and challenges and provide a customized quote!

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