The company’s capacity for change is especially evident in the recent efforts of the global learning and development management (GLDM) department, which supports CSC’s strategic and operational objectives through employee development and learning initiatives. The emphasis on what the company’s approximately 90,000 employees learn is shifting, said Holly Huntley, corporate director of GLDM. “We have been doing e-learning for the past 10 years. Traditionally, our charter has been about career development and role-based development, or preparing an employee for certification,” she said of past practices. “We have global roles defined for each employee in the company. Each role is associated with a competency model, and then we tie that to learning solutions. So what that does in terms of our framework is helps them develop the competencies they need to be successful in their current role or helps them develop competency for a future role. We make sure our employees’ skills are current so they can deliver the most up-to-date solutions for their clients.”
However, GLDM’s objective is evolving to meet the on-the-job needs of CSC’s workforce, Huntley said. This includes providing online access to job aids, express guides with up-to-date information on technology releases and code “cookbooks” with specific programming data. “We’re moving more into a performance-support area of learning,” she said. “What that means to us is allowing employees to get information that they need to help them on a daily basis with job tasks. We’re providing tools for workers with bits of information that they need to do their job.” Apparently, they’ve taken to it. Huntley cited a recent survey of CSC employees regarding e-learning, in which 64 percent of 10,841 respondents said they had accessed GLDM online learning resources.
Because the company has offices around the world, GLDM has to provide e-learning efficiently and economically to a culturally and linguistically diverse group of employees. This challenge is met in two ways. The first is GLDM’s organizational arrangement. “We have kind of a hybrid model in that we’re centralized at the corporate level. In terms of how we’re structured, that helps us with cost control,” Huntley said.
“But then we have a local learning officer that oversees local learning solutions at each division or operating group,” she added. “Each learning officer writes a learning plan each year based on their needs, and they go through a budgeting process. We have a learning officers’ council that enables us to take advantage of economies of scale and do things that are standard across the enterprise. Because we have a global learning officers’ council, we have representatives from each of the geographies that we serve. They help us understand the local data privacy issues, for example. And we share best practices and leverage solutions through the learning officers’ council.”
The second way in which GLDM provides learning and development tools to CSC’s varied workforce is by offering content in many different languages, Huntley said. These tools are developed in-house or through CSC partner SkillSoft. “[SkillSoft] provides content in multiple languages. The majority of our online courseware comes from SkillSoft,” Huntley said. “And we develop global learning assets internally, in multiple languages. I think the e-learning ensures we are doing things as efficiently as possible.”
One unique feature of the affiliation with SkillSoft is its co-learning system, in which e-learning resources are made available to employees of companies working with CSC. “Through our SkillSoft contract, we have the ability to offer these online learning programs to our subcontractors,” Huntley said. “We can offer subcontractors licenses to the courseware to a certain threshold. If we exceed that threshold, then the subcontractor organization could buy licenses through our contract vehicle at a volume discount.”
This arrangement is beneficial to all parties involved. “We can foster the development of our subcontractors and treat them as equal partners,” Huntley said. “It adds value for two reasons. First of all, it is a discriminator to help with business. Secondly, it levels the teams, so everyone has access to the same training and information.”