A Conversation with Darin Hartley: Biggest Challenges Facing L&D Departments

Darin Hartley is Vice President of Business Development and Solution Architecture at Frontier Signal. Darin Hartley has worked in the training industry for 30 years and has undergraduate and graduate degrees in Corporate Training and Training Management. Previously he has worked at BICSI, The Janus Experience, LLC, Intrepid Learning, Inc., and Intrepid Learning Solutions, Inc., ASTD (now ATD), Dell, Lockheed Martin, General Physics, and the US Navy. Darin has presented previously at ISPI International, ASTD International, the ASTD Technical Skills Training Conference, and many others on a variety of topics. He has keynoted for national and international learning and training conferences for a variety of organizations.He has authored articles for T+D, Technical & Skills Training, and WorkForce Magazines. Darin has written four books including his most recent, 10 Steps to Successful Social Networking for Business, published in April 2010 (ASTD Press). Darin is a 2014 ASTD CPLP Fellow award winner.




Frontier Signal (FS): Darin, you have a long career in training and development across many industries and government, what are the biggest challenges facing L&D departments today?  


There are plenty of challenges in L&D departments today,

  1. Technology is continually changing and used more and more in most organizations.  There is almost a constant need to be learning new knowledge and skills in the modern workplace.  This rarely can be addressed appropriately with traditional classroom and related methods, especially across large enterprise organizations.
  2. Talent shortage means that more people are hired into organizations needing more than basic onboarding training to be successful.  Assessing and closing these learning gaps quickly is an imperative L&D challenge.
  3. Cross-generational demographics can be a huge challenge. There are as many as five generations in the workforce now and this can wreak havoc on L&D teams trying to create best-in-class learning solutions across this diverse group.


Frontier Signal (FS): You speak with HR and business leaders every week, why are inner mobility processes elevated in importance today and what are its biggest challenges?


The massive employment statistics we are experiencing now makes what was a tight talent market extremely challenging.  This is driving many companies to focus, by choice, on reskilling and/or upskilling their current internal workforces. Done successfully, this can have tremendous positive outcomes for an organization.


Frontier Signal (FS): Why did you join Frontier Signal and how can its product be used to build a strong inner mobility strategy?


I joined Frontier Signal because I believe in the company, it’s product, and the Frontier Signal team.  I have known Nelson Rockeferller Jr. since 2003 and was delighted to have the opportunity to work with him again.


Frontier Signal’s product helps pinpoint a set of five signals specific to an organization’s job roles.  Once a benchmark is established for a role, internal/incumbent candidates can take a brief assessment to see how much “fit” they have for a role.  If there have been other benchmarks done for other roles in the company, Frontier Signal’s technology will identify skill-adjacent roles for the incumbent or internal candidate, which can help assure success in the new role.

Topics: Skills Gaps, Future of Work, Inner Mobility, Job Fit, Interview, learning and development

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