Looking Back: What People Say about the Towards Maturity Benchmark

by | Jun 5, 2014 | Articles

Find out what people have said about the Towards Maturity Benchmark, and how it can help you.

The Towards Maturity Benchmark is considered one of the most comprehensive independent reviews of how organisations are establishing successful technology-enabled learning strategies in the workplace.

Its 12 performance indicators and 21 effective practice benchmarks helps organisations directly compare their strategy with the market leaders.

The Benchmarks have been refined through the participation of over 3,000 organisations since 2003 and are used by L&D organisations around the globe to track progress and improve performance. The study is constantly kept up-to-date through wide industry collaboration.

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3 Big Benefits for Benchmarking

We’ve received a lot of feedback from L&D professionals who have been through the benchmark process. Their comments can be summarised into 3 main benefits:






Take a look at some of the participants’ comments for yourself:

Completing this [Towards Maturity Benchmark] survey has made me critically analyse the “big picture” of the organisation.2014 Benchmark Participant, UK Health Sector

‘I enjoyed the [Towards Maturity Benchmark]process as it creates pause to reflect and consider what is working, what isn’t and what are we going to do differently, or focus on in the coming months.  Kudos to the author(s) who crafted the questions!’ Sue Davis, Head of Global Learning, Travelex (2014)

“Just like others who work in a fast paced organisation, I never feel like I have the time to complete surveys like this.  After 20 minutes, I found myself taking a screen shot of a particular list of questions to prompt discussion with peers in the T&D Leadership team.  The Towards Maturity questions in this study and my response highlights that we have some areas that need addressing to leadership and our T&D strategy!” Lee Jones, Head of Training & Development Design, Virgin Media (2013)

”I have taken part in the Towards Maturity Benchmark for the first time this year [2013] because, as L&D professionals within the health sector we have to become much more agile at developing technology-enabled learning and truly understanding the options available. I found that not only are the questions useful and provocative but will also form part of  a useful action plan moving forward.” Simon Gosney, National Head of Learning & Development NHS Direct (2013)

“I would strongly encourage others to make time to take part in the 2013 Towards Maturity Benchmark this summer – we’ve been using the benchmark for a number of years to help us reflect on our strategy and implementation plans and time spent benchmarking is time well spent. The personalised report we receive each year has helped us refine our approach to modernising learning in the council and provided practical actions that really increased engagement and saved us time.” Wendy Henry, OD Team Leader, Lincolnshire CC (2013)

“I think the benchmark review has really evolved this year with new areas of focus such as mobile learning and I am looking forward to receiving my results. Although it is challenging to complete I find the review gives me an objective insight I wouldn’t otherwise have had and it helps me identify areas requiring focus. I think all organisations should go through the benchmark exercise.” Claire Line, Learning Technologies Manager, Hogan Lovells International LLP (2013)

“The pace of organisational development within the health service combined with the evolving world of  learning technology can make it difficult to know where to start. We have used the Towards Maturity Benchmark to help us define and prioritise our e-enabled learning strategy over the past few years. TM Benchmark allows us to evidence our position for the areas we are doing well and identify areas for improvement. We also continue to learn  from the best practice from others involved in the study. The personalised report provides us with a really useful indicator to help plan for the year ahead – and longer term. Anyone with a remit for learning and development who is expected to deliver more for less will find the 2013 benchmark study one of the most effective uses of their time this year!”  Gwyneth Page, Learning Modernisation Manager, Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (2013)

“We have used the Towards Maturity Benchmark to help us set our ongoing learning strategy and have been involved in the benchmark review for a number of years now to help us track progress. It is updated every year and it always provokes discussion and ideas on how to improve the impact of our learning services. I would encourage all Learning Pool Members to take part in the free review- the personalised report that you will receive provides invaluable evidence to help you open up new conversations within the business”. Karen Smout, Learning Solutions Lead Surrey County Council (2013)

“First Group has participated in the TM Benchmark over the last 5 years and the continual review process helps us to challenge our thinking and track our progress both internally and against our peers. The Towards Maturity Model has provided us with a practical framework on which to base our Learning and Development strategy, helping us to focus on supporting the strategic priorities of our business.  I welcome the introduction of the new Alignment and Engagement Indices in the 2013 Study, which will help us to strengthen our relationships with important business stakeholders.”  Niall Gavin, Group Head of L&D, First Group (2013)

“Our organisation has used the Towards Maturity Benchmark to help us independently establish strong foundations for a learning strategy that will underpin future business success. As a member of the Towards Maturity Finance Benchmark Group we are looking forward to working with others in our sector to learn and grow together. My intention is that through collaboration of good practice, we become a driving force throughout our industry as well as beyond, in terms of what world class L&D looks like. Laura Pettitt, Head of Learning, Bupa International (2013)

“For some years we have been working on ambitious projects to roll out learning across all of our ever changing markets. However, it is always useful to stop and make a check of where we are, what we can be doing better and what we might need for the future. It is important to review good practices both internally and outside of our own organisation – The Towards Maturity Automotive Benchmark helps us to do just that. The 2011 report provided insights into how we can become more efficient and effective, and we are looking forward to reviewing our progress through our participation in the 2013 Benchmark.” Sann René Glaza, Senior Manager, Customer Service Training, Toyota Motor Europe (2013)

“This is the 3rd year we’ve taken part in and irrespective of how we rate ourselves against the benchmark questions, the questions in themselves make us stop and reflect on what we are planning to focus our energies on. Thank you to the TM team for making these even better, year on year.” Andy Sorton, Organisational Development Advisor,  Borough of Poole (2012)

“Thank you for my 2012 personalised report. I am kicking myself hard for not using this when I first stepped into my role. I had contributed to the Towards Maturity Benchmark before but with my head down, focused on transforming the learning organisation, I missed a great opportunity to make my life easier and the team even more effective. I won’t make that mistake again!” Global Head of Sales & Service Learning, Thompson Reuters (2012)

“Thank you for the opportunity to participate in the 2012 Benchmark. This is an excellent study withrelevant and thought-provoking questions – the best I have completed in a while. The quality of questions gave me reflective moments as to how we can improve what we do here as I realised my answers highlighted gaps I could fill, and this was very much appreciated as a side benefit of taking part.”  Linda Al Ansari, Manager Learning Technologies, Emirates Dubai (2012)

“As with previous Towards Maturity Benchmark Studies, this year’s study has given me time to pause and reflect on how Eversheds is progressing in learning. I find the study really motivating, as it allows me to take a step back and realise what we have accomplished as a company, whilst providing a check-list for the areas we still need to focus on.” Tim Drewitt, e-learning specialist, Eversheds LLP (2012)

“It’s encouraging to see a rise in benchmarking, and may it long continue. I’ve been taking part in the Towards Maturity learning technology Benchmark since 2003. I find the results thought provoking and a great source of ideas for performance improvement. The learning technologist is often quite a lone specialist role within organisations and the benchmarking allows me to make a comparison with the real world and to just stop for a moment to sanity check that I’m delivering tangible business benefits.”  Mike Booth, Learning Technologies Manager, Cable&Wireless (2012)

The Benchmark Centre made me reflect on what we weren’t planning to do but perhaps should be planning to do!” OD advisor, national housing partnership 2011

“The personalised benchmark report we received has provided a framework for learning technology strategy and implementation that I keep coming back to – in essence, it has helped me to define my objectives, highlighting areas where we can further develop a culture of learning.” RNLI (2011)


To date over 2,400 organisations have been through our review process:

“I believe this is the best survey I have spent my time on (even though it was a long one). The questions were well thought through and I could, for once, relate them to my organisation that I support.” Snr L&D manager, multinational airline (2010)

“It was really useful completing the survey, it gave me time to reflect and take stock. I can see how advanced we are in Cisco.” David Loewy, Field Client Manager, Cisco Systems Ltd. (2008)

“I have just completed the Towards Maturity 2008 Benchmark review and found the process of taking part really useful.  We don’t have anything like this in the NHS at the moment and I am looking forward to seeing the results. It will be very helpful to know how our activities compare with others so that we can build on our strengths and improve our weaknesses.” Alison Wright, E-Learning Programme Manager, NHS Education South Central (2008)

“It takes time and experience to embed learning technologies properly and we have found that taking part in the Towards Maturity research over the past few years has been a really useful exercise to help us compare our experiences and collectively learn from others also on that journey.” Charles Jennings, Global Head of Learning, Thomson Reuters (2008)

You can take part in the Towards Maturity Benchmark, 24/7, free-of-charge, at: www.towardsmaturity.org/2014benchmark.

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