Adult Learners’ Week: The benefits of lifelong learning

It is hoped that the week, which is coordinated by the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education, will encourage more individuals to consider embracing learning, allow organisations to showcase the various learning opportunities they offer and help shape the debate around adult learning.

It is also the perfect opportunity for companies to highlight the training opportunities open to their staff.

Hundreds of events are taking place up and down the country in the coming days, ranging from IT taster sessions to award ceremonies celebrating the achievements of adult learners and advice sessions on job hunting and CV writing.

Benefits to employers

Adult learning not only impacts the learner, it also has multiple benefits for their employers, which is why so many businesses offer training and development opportunities.

Offering staff the chance to learn and develop their skills and preparing them for a better job or promotional opportunity in the future can be a great way to nurture staff talent and let them know how much you value them and that you see a bright future for them with your company.

As well as helping staff on their way to a great career, by investing in training and development you are also future-proofing your organisation by equipping workers with skills that match your business needs and can help you plug skills gaps, as well as giving companies a competitive edge by ensuring workers have the up-to-date skills they need to be innovative.

One factor which may put employers off investing in their staff’s education and training is the cost. However, it is likely that these costs will be recouped quickly – our own research shows that 44 per cent of companies questioned agreed they had saved money by growing their own talent*.

Investing in staff education boosts morale, meaning workers want to work harder for their employer while further training can also equip workers with the skills to be more efficient, driving up productivity. Motivated staff are also more likely to stay with a company for the long-haul, minimising the loss of organisational knowledge and experience.

Whether it’s through Apprenticeships, job-specific training or by providing nationally recognised qualifications such as NVQs and maths and English, investing in your worker’s lifelong learning will reap dividends for your company, so why not use Adult Learners’ Week as an opportunity to engage your employees with the idea of building up their skills base?

How can businesses get involved in Adult Learners’ Week?

It’s not too late to get involved the activities that are taking place in your local area.

There’s also lots of resources available if you want to be an advocate of the campaign and organise your own event or activity for your staff. Just visit the Adult Learners’ Week website for more information.

Need more information on staff training and development?

For further information on how we can help develop the skills of your employees and meet the needs of your business all year round visit

You can also download the latest copy of our report Nurturing talent: building the workforce of the future














*Nurturing Talent

Cranfield School of Management and learndirect 2008