ERIC Number: EJ1095233
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 40
What Are Drivers for Informal Learning?
Schürmann, Eva; Beausaert, Simon
European Journal of Training and Development, v40 n3 p130-154 2016
Purpose: The topic of informal learning at work has received increasing attention in the past years. The purpose of this study is to explore in which informal learning activities employees engage and what are the drivers for informal learning. Design/Methodology/Approach: Semi-structured interviews were taken from ten human resources (HR) and ten marketing employees working at a German machinery manufacturer. Findings: Employees mostly learn informally by talking or collaborating with others, searching information online, feedback giving and seeking from colleagues and supervisors and reading. Next, it was found that organizational drivers, task and job drivers, personal drivers and formal learning influenced employees' informal learning. Background characteristics on the contrary were not found to influence informal learning. Overall, within these categories, the following drivers had the greatest influence on informal learning: commitment to learning and development, feedback as well as interactions with and support from colleagues and supervisors. Research Limitations/Implications: The design of this exploratory qualitative study brings some limitations. Based on the findings, suggestions for future quantitative and intervention studies are done. Practical Implications: The results show how human resources development (HRD) professionals could better support employees' engagement in informal learning and gives an overview of the determinants that could be influenced and in turn have a positive effect on employees' informal learning. Originality/Value: This study is one of the first studies unraveling informal learning as perceived by employees. It develops a comprehensive framework for categorizing drivers for informal learning.
Descriptors: Informal Education, Learning Activities, Semi Structured Interviews, Employees, Workplace Learning, Educational Background, Conventional Instruction, Feedback (Response), Labor Force Development, Learner Engagement, Human Resources, Employee Attitudes, Job Satisfaction, Marketing, Foreign Countries
Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, West Yorkshire, BD16 1WA, UK. Tel: +44-1274-777700; Fax: +44-1274-785201; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.emeraldinsight.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Germany