Learning never stops: TomTom’s growth and development culture
School, college, university – they all stop at some point. However, that doesn’t mean you have to stop sharpening your skills or gaining new ones. This growth mindset is built into life at TomTom. All TomTom’ers are encouraged to figure out where they want to go and take the steps to get there. Like any journey, once you know the destination, all you need is the right guidance and resources to get you there.
In recent years, it’s become more important for a company to have a strong learning culture. I spoke to Ajay Jacob, TomTom’s Learning & Development Manager, to find out more. He relates the changes to a few factors: “The pandemic had a big impact on the way we work. This meant that the way we learn (or deliver learning) had to change. You also have tech like generative AI shaping the job market, as well as a shortage of talent across a range of industries.” In response, companies are providing more learning benefits for employees.
Having opportunities for learning is not just a nice-to-have. It’s an essential part of personal and professional development. During the pandemic, many people considered their talents and the value of their work more closely and started actively pursuing learning – to improve, adapt or even transition into new roles entirely. Especially now, companies should be supporting employees in their personal journeys of growth and development. At TomTom, Chief Human Resources Officer, Arne-Christian van der Tang, says that the company will “continue to nurture a learning culture and help TomTom’ers find their impact.” Here’s how.
Learning at TomTom: The facts and figures
There are two parts to growth and development at TomTom. Ajay tells me, “Our open and collaborative culture and our resources and programs aimed at both personal and professional development.”
On the cultural side, feedback plays a central role. One of TomTom’s leadership behaviors, “multiplying,” encourages TomTom’ers to pass on their expertise and experiences to help others become experts in their roles and in areas outside of their responsibility. It’s all about having each other’s back. “People are willing to hear your ideas, share knowledge and provide support,” Ajay adds, “which makes TomTom a place where people are able to do their best work.”
Equally, it’s TomTom’s responsibility to provide a library of resources for TomTom’ers to benefit from. That’s why every TomTom’er has paid access to LinkedIn Learning and O’Reilly. The options to explore new or familiar topics and master skills are open.
The learning resources are well received. In 2022, TomTom’ers completed 10,750+ courses on LinkedIn and consumed 3,700+ pieces of content on O’Reilly. From Python to Project Management, TomTom’ers can learn anything they want to, as long as it's adding to their skillset. As TomTom’ers grow and apply their new skills at work, learning becomes a win-win. Beyond LinkedIn Learning and O’Reilly, TomTom’ers also have a dedicated development budget for opportunities likelonger courses and conferences, as well as paid development leave to ge the time they need for learning. All this is part of TomTom’s Grow and Develop benefits for all employees.
With the right guidance and resources available, TomTom’ers are encouraged to take the lead, shape their career path and make it happen. The company’s approach has been going well so far. So well that TomTom won LinkedIn's “Learning Champion” award last year, and has been nominated for it five years running.
Everything comes back to people
One thing is for sure, as Ajay puts it: “Given how rapidly the tech landscape in which we operate is evolving, the only way we can be positioned to adapt to these changes is by investing in learning and development.” As tech, trends and curveballs like the global pandemic come into play, companies have to actively rethink how they approach learning in everyday work. TomTom’s approach to work flexibility, for example, led the company to prioritize a hybrid learning model with both online and in-person options to fit every need in a changing landscape.
The point is to move with people and give them the tools they need to make their ambitions a reality – not tomorrow; now.
Ajay says it well: “We have great talent working here and together as an organization we’re chasing an exciting North Star of the first real-time map. We want to continue giving TomTom’ers the support they need to deliver every line of code that could make this possible. The result? They grow their careers, increase their impact and leave a permanent mark on the way maps are made forever.”
Growth and development are more than a work benefit at TomTom. They’re a way of life, and an open opportunity to make an even greater impact on yourself and the world.
Learn about the impact you can have within TomTom – apply for a position today.
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