Bersin by Deloitte Study Shows Learning and Development Spending Soars as Organizations Fill Critical Skills Gaps

Overall Training Budgets Rise 15 Percent; Organizations with Mature, Effective L&D Functions Spend 37 Percent More Than the Least Mature Groups to Build a "Supply Chain" of Skills

Feb 04, 2014, 08:00 ET from Bersin by Deloitte

OAKLAND, Calif., Feb. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Bersin by Deloitte, Deloitte Consulting LLP, a leading research and advisory firm empowering Human Resource (HR) organizations to drive bottom-line impact, today announced new research that shows that overall spending on training rose 15 percent to $1,169 per learner on average in 2013. The rise in training spending is a signal that businesses are responding to a growing skills gap as the economy recovers by investing more in employee development.  The findings appear in Bersin by Deloitte's new industry study The Corporate Learning Factbook 2014: Benchmarks, Trends, and Analysis of the U.S. Training Market.


Summarized in a complimentary WhatWorks® market brief, the research provides key benchmarks and valuable guidance to help Learning & Development (L&D) executives make valuable investment decisions.

"The problem many organizations face today is not a shortage of people, it is a shortage of key skills, especially those in engineering, scientific and technical fields," said Karen O'Leonard, vice president, benchmarking and analytics research, Bersin by Deloitte, Deloitte Consulting LLP.  "Businesses are responding by investing more. And in mature organizations, this investment is not just short-term training – it involves building a 'supply chain' of skills to fill these gaps for the long-term."

Nearly 300 U.S. organizations participated in the study from October to December 2013. Among the research study's additional findings:

  • Mature organizations spend 37 percent more. Organizations with mature, effective L&D functions spend $1,353 per learner on average, or 37 percent more than the least mature groups. Most of these organizations have also adopted a "continuous capability development" approach that makes them more innovative, responsive and agile as their markets change. Learning in this model includes development planning, formal interventions, rotational assignments, coaching, mentoring and much sharing and collaborative learning.
  • Technology organizations invest more in development. Technology organizations spent $1,847 per learner on average – one of the highest of any industry sector. Several tech firms have made large investments for training their teams to evolve from product sellers to solution and industry experts. Other organizations in the technology space have transformed their engineering teams to focus on new products in consumer electronics, Big Data, telecommunications and cyber-security.
  • Leadership development claims the largest budget share. The largest share of the L&D budget went to leadership development, with 35 cents of every training dollar, on average, spent on developing leaders at all levels. Leadership has become an even bigger issue as the economy recovers and many firms look to expand globally. More than 60 percent of all organizations cite "leadership gaps" as the top business challenge.[1]

The full report, The Corporate Learning Factbook 2014: Benchmarks, Trends, and Analysis of the U.S. Training Market, is available for $795 for a PDF. For more details, visit , Bersin by Deloitte's scorecards, assessments, and services help organizations to assess and to improve continuously their training and organizational strategies.

Register to join Karen O'Leonard as she shares key findings that appear in The Corporate Learning Factbook 2014 through a webinar at 2:00 p.m. ET/19:00 GMT on March 6, 2014.

Those interested in learning more about Bersin by Deloitte or its WhatWorks® membership may email or call 510-251-4400.

About Bersin by Deloitte
Bersin by Deloitte delivers research-based people strategies designed to help leaders and their organizations in their efforts to deliver exceptional business performance. Our WhatWorks® membership gives Fortune 1000 and Global 2000 HR professionals the information and tools they need to design and implement leading practice solutions, benchmark against others, develop their staff, and select and implement systems. A piece of Bersin by Deloitte research is downloaded on average approximately every minute during the business day. More than 5,000 organizations worldwide use our research and consulting to guide their HR, talent and learning strategies. For more information, please visit or

As used in this document, "Deloitte" means Deloitte Consulting LLP, a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting.

[1] This information is based on our current research on the topic of human capital trends, due to be published Q1'2014.

SOURCE Bersin by Deloitte