Facing challenges in the Learning & Development Department
learning and development

Let me see if this sounds familiar to you. You work in L&D and come across different challenges often, this could be staff retention, finding the right talent, getting staff interested in staff training, managing finance and many more! Does this sound like you?

Don’t worry you’re not alone, many learning and development specialists face struggles often with different areas, and let’s face it, you have a busy and rather hectic role, so give yourself a pat on the back for what you’ve achieved so far and know it’s about to get better.

If you’re tired of struggling or feel like issues aren’t being resolved and this is having an impact on the overall business, we’re here to help.

After spending many years working with learning and development departments across the UK, we’ve learned the different challenges learning and development face and have the solutions to help your L&D department thrive. Some of these challenges you may recognise and include:


When it comes to Learning and Development, finance is one of those subjects you often don’t like to talk about or manage. This isn’t just because it can be boring and tedious but Learning and Development specialists aren’t always trained in finance and are expected to ‘just know’ it, but the issue is- to do it right you have to learn about it and become pretty good at managing it. Our finance articles will look at the following:

Cash flow planning

Your cash flow is the lifeblood of your business. For L&D, cash flow could be limited so you need to make the most of what you’ve got.

A little planning goes a long way. Too often, you only start talking about cash flow because you’ve hit a pain point. Even a healthy, profitable business can suddenly end up without enough money in the bank because nobody’s tracking what’s flowing in and out. It’s simple to create your own forecast. And once you know-how, it will become one of the most important pieces of insights you have.

Managing a budget

Creating a budget for developing your people can be a daunting task for many professionals. Throw in a global pandemic and you’ve got an even more challenging task. While there are many unknowns, it’s still critical to plan and be clear about specific learning needs and associated costs. We’ll help you alleviate some of these “pains” by doing your due diligence during the creation of your learning and development budget.

Getting the most for your budget

This part looks at where you can reduce costs, this looks at making sure you’re spending the money in the right places and looks to cut costs for things like training venues and how to stretch a tight budget, so the business isn’t impacted in a negative way. We will also inform you how to manage unforeseen events such as Covid.

The financial admin

We will help you understand the tools you need for good credit management as well as managing relationships with your bank and accountant. This stuff is sometimes overlooked, but if you get a good strategy going, then you will often find it will run smoothly and efficiently with little input.

Reporting and tracking

Tracking finances and outcomes is important to any business. You want to know the money you spend is going to good places with a good outcome and tracking this on reports is a great way to achieve this.


Marketing may not seem to be a big part of your role in L&D, but marketing is in most parts of a business from a job advert, through to internal marketing to your staff!

Attracting and retaining staff

We will help you understand how to write the best job adverts and how to market your business to find the right staff.

Internal marketing

Internal marketing is fundamental to most businesses. It helps staff stay motivated and excited about a business and also helps them feel they’re part of it.

In-depth audience insights

It’s important to truly understand those who you are seeking to develop and train. L&D has a real strength in understanding individuals and how they learn using tools and doing training needs analyses. What is often missing is an understanding of the context in which this learning is applied. This is vital for ensuring that the support given leads to the desired outcome and is delivered in a way that engages the most. It also adds a rich context to requests to allow for effective personalization.


When it comes to pricing, negotiating, customer service and tracking competitors- how is your L&D department fairing? Creating a solid sales strategy is just as important as your marketing strategy- while the two go hand in hand, not everyone is born a natural salesperson, therefore we will help you understand the best techniques to help you with your sales.

Procurement and Buying

Procurement and buying aren’t as simple as it seems, it includes tendering, managing contracts, stock control, and inventory planning. These are all things that help improve your L&D department and can be fundamental and save you a lot of time. Having tenders allows people to come to you based on your needs, therefore setting up a strong tendering process is a great way to reduce your workload.


With any job, there is basic administration, this includes bookkeeping, billing, accounts preparation, and payroll handling. While this may seem simple, having a system that works seamlessly is important.


Managing your staff well is a huge part of your job as well as recruiting the right staff. This part of the L&D series will look at the best approaches to recruiting, including managing a budget and spending it in the best places. It will also look at, dispute resolution, motivating staff, and managing training

Personal business skills

As you may know, there are so many different tools that you can use to make things simpler. These can be paid or free including tracking tools, reporting, and different sales tools. We’re going to be looking at the different tools available to help you with your business as well as looking at written and oral communication, and general organizational skills.

The aim!

To sum up, we will help you take your L&D strategy to the next level! Does that sound of interest to you?

If it does, then make sure you like and follow us on one of our social media channels as we’re putting together a series of informative articles to help you overcome the different challenges you may face on a day-to-day basis with the aim of seeing your L&D department thrive. Does that sound intriguing to you? If so, here are the links.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KnightsAbsorb

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Knights_Absorb

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/25073499/admin/

Our first article in our new and fascinating L&D series is Finance. It will aim to give a general overview about the different aspects of finance in the L&D department to make sure you’re covering the full scope efficiently, it will briefly cover individual topics such as cash flow, credit management, managing relationships with your bank and accountant and working on a small budget. This will help you set up a schedule and strategy to help manage your L&D’s financial planning smoothly and efficiently.

Do we have you engaged? If not, then join in with our upcoming surveys where you’ll be able to tell us about your own challenges and view the results from many different people working in learning and development.

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Four Seasons Healthcare Group

We had an urgent need to provide training in Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW) across our business as a result of the challenges experienced during the first critical months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Knights Absorb worked with us to define a training solution that could be delivered in a ‘Covid-Safe’ manner that would enable us to reach our teams at our target sites within a tight time frame. They trained 277 of our team members across a 6 week period, providing the reassurance we needed to keep our teams and residents safe as well ensuring we were meeting regulatory requirements. The trainers were professional and sensitive to the needs of our homes at all times, and the feedback from everyone who attended the training has been fantastic.

United Response

Knights are now our preferred provider. The quality of training that Knights provides is exceptional. When it comes to Customer Service, Knights excel, in the many years of partnering with multiple companies, Knights are head and shoulders above the rest. Never phased by challenges that clients provide, Knights naturally deal with the issues, assess the need and make the correct decision for the customer. This is not to say they bend over or wilt when challenged, quite the opposite, they seem to scope issues and resolve them efficiently, a customer service ethic that is quite rare. Keep up the good work guys, it is noticed and appreciated.


Knights don’t use generic trainers but find the best trainer for the course and client. The trainers are specialists in their fields and have practitioner experience which I feel is always important when delivering to staff. Trainers discuss our needs before attending training and revise training to meet specific needs.


Knights have personalised courses to meet our learning and development needs. As predominately a learning disability/Autism provider we require trainers and courses that reflect these specific needs and Knights have delivered on this. All courses have met our requirements fully

Modus Care

Knights Training are an organisation that are easy to work with, reliable, operate a competitive straight forward pricing structure, offer an impressive range of courses and employ good quality trainers who have expert subject knowledge, certainly an organisation that I would recommend.