The economic picture again seems to be dominated by doom and gloom.  Let’s leave talk of the Euro zone debt crisis and possible double-dip recession to one side though.  I am interested in what effect another round of economic belt-tightening may have on HR practitioners?  Will companies, for example, stop investing employees if the economic situation worsens?

A recent CIPD study suggests this may not be the case.  Seven in 10 employers report that spending on coaching has either increased or stayed the same since the last recession.  And this comes during a period where budgets for HR have remained very tight.  So what conclusions can we draw? 

It is encouraging that learning and development is being prioritised by business leaders.  Nobody can be sure what the immediate future holds for the economy.  But what is sure is that companies, by investing in employees, can help better prepare themselves. 

Of course this doesn’t mean blindly spending on endless learning and development initiatives.  Companies should identify their talent and prioritise developing top performers.  Set in place plans to nuture, develop, engage and retain them.  By doing so, they can build from within. 

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