An inspiring day out for Virtual College with some L&D movers and shakers

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The world of Digital learning is always changing, so we decided to take some time away from the office to reflect on the current state of the industry and how we can keep pace. Although Virtual College has been in business for over 23 years, we need to make sure our offering makes the most of new technologies and approaches to learning, as we find new tools and face new challenges. 

On the 25th July, we invited industry experts to join us at a unique and creative outdoor space on the banks of the River Wharfe to share their knowledge and experiences. Attended by staff from across our sales, marketing, content creation and support teams, we wanted to think about how we work and what we communicate to our customers. This will then be shared with the wider business via a newly formed ‘Co-Creation’ group, comprised of those who attended the day. 

Our first session took place at Nell Bank - an inspiring kind of setting to encourage us to think in a different kind of way. We wanted our minds to be as open and engaged as possible as we learned from the best, and what better place than the great Yorkshire outdoors on a glorious sunny day. From tree houses, to Tepees and beanbags, with a hand crafted ‘Fire side chat’ created by Michelle Parry-Slater with pink flames …just because! We discussed openly the current challenges in L&D and how we can better approach these as an organisation with our customers, to benefit everything we do.

Bring in the experts!

The day was led by some fantastic experts: Laura Overton, Michelle Parry-Slater, Amy Brann, Andrew Jacobs, Perry Timms and Robin Hoyle. We heard first hand their experiences and their views on where L&D has come from and where it has lost its way over the last 30 years, as well as how it needs to learn some new tricks to meet learner needs. We also got great insight into what is currently happening in the world of L&D - in terms of organisation culture challenges, and how to change the conversation with our customers to drive a learning culture. A central theme of the day was about moving away from an obsession with completion rates and metrics. Measurement should look at more than that and form part of a manager’s performance management responsibilities, so the focus becomes not just on what the learner has done but how it helps them in their role. It was a fascinating and stimulating day which ensures that we will remain at the forefront of thinking in L&D; keeping our ideas exciting and our customers happy! 

Embracing change

Digital transformation is getting us in the mood for change – and whilst we spend most days discussing this with customers, it’s time we practice what we preach and start doing the same. Alongside the industry movers and shakers, we are also going through an exciting brand transformation. The purpose of this is to rejuvenate our respected and proud 23-year-old brand and logo– we are a warm, open, honest and sharing company and we feel that blue doesn’t quite reflect this warm nature. In fact, it feels cold! More on this to come over the coming week as we share this with you on our social media.

Office refit!

Our IIkley offices are undergoing a huge refit – again to reflect our brand transformation. We are updating our collaborative spaces and introducing better technology to support our, and our customer’s, growing needs.
We have grown attached to our Ilkley offices and our Yorkshire roots keep us true to who we are -   a team of creative professionals with a love of the outdoors. This refit will help us to continue to work innovatively as our organisation grows and changes. 

If you want to speak with us about any of this transformation and how we are making the cultural shift here at Virtual College HQ, please email [email protected]