Why we’re building and nurturing a learning culture at Inviqa

By Cathy Dearson

We regularly ask employees to tell us what they value about life at Inviqa. And one thing that crops up time and again is the effective learning culture we’ve established. It’s embedded in everything we do here, from how we grow as individuals and as a business, to how we help develop the capabilities of our clients.

Here we sit down with Nick Abbott, who heads up the company’s learning team, to learn why Inviqa is passionate about cultivating an effective learning culture.

What’s a learning culture (and why does it matter)?

Every business has a learning culture of sorts, because learning is just a natural part of being human, and an intrinsic part of our jobs.

But where a learning culture is actually visible and driving change in the business, that organisation is better equipped to retain employees, drive innovation, cultivate leadership, and keep pace with changes in technology.

One of the main attractions when joining Inviqa was the clear emphasis the company places on the training and development of its staff. This is a clear top-agenda item, right from the top down.

Marc Fernandez, client partner, Inviqa


How do you establish an effective learning culture?

An effective learning culture starts with making learning accessible, by treating it as a valued and unfenced resource, and by taking a blended approach that recognises the different ways in which we all learn. It’s cultivated by celebrating risks, by evaluating performances based on learning, and by empowering team members to train, coach, and ‘pass it forward’.

I think part of what makes our own learning culture special here at Inviqa is our emphasis on supporting both company learning and personal learning.

We invest in company learning: the stuff we need you to know to do your job, but we also support employees with their personal learning, i.e. the learning you wish you want to do based on your own interests, motivations, and career aspirations.

Inviqa's learning-centred personal development tools have really promoted a joined-up approach to both the company's and individual’s goals. As a manager I find I can have incredibly productive conversations that enable me to point my reports to the training they need to get where they want to go.

Steve Richards, software engineering manager, Inviqa

How would you describe Inviqa’s learning culture?

Our learning culture is all about learning, doing, and sharing your knowledge. It’s championed by a dedicated learning team that sits within our wider People and Learning team, which is here to help individuals and the company to grow.

Inviqa provides opportunities to progress, innovate, and influence. Key to our culture and thinking is that you don’t have to get everything right all the time, and that it’s okay to learn from mistakes, as well as celebrate successes. 

If you have the desire and energy to bring about real change, Inviqa will support and encourage you all the way. 

What do you do as head of learning at Inviqa?

By working with Inviqa I have the opportunity to help develop and empower people in all sorts of ways. 

My day-to-day activities can span anything from delivering training to clients or colleagues, to organising our regular internal conference and developing courses for our internal careers system, Inviqa Me.

Tell me more about Inviqa Me

The Inviqa Me project enables our staff to easily explore opportunities for their career paths at Inviqa and beyond. It demonstrates the capabilities needed for traditional “vertical growth”, but also empowers them to see areas for potential “horizontal growth”. 

Brett Lawrence, business consutancy director, Inviqa

We’re committed to helping every Inviqa employee (or ‘Inviqan’) grow, learn, and reach their full potential. That’s why we developed Inviqa Me – a system that helps you set clearly-defined development goals and track your progress, together with your line manager.

This internal tool helps our people to define clear career paths, share knowledge in a structured way, manage personal development, and identify skills and capabilities the company needs to develop to better service our clients.

Everyone needs clarity, simplicity, and fairness – especially when it comes to their career and the pathways open to them. And that’s why Inviqa’s People and Learning team has developed this joined-up system, which provides an industry-standard competency framework based on the Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA) – together with the monitoring of day-to-day skills self-assessed within the Dreyfus framework.

The Inviqa Me project illustrates the dedication the company has to ensuring staff continue to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding of the rapidly-changing marketplace in which we operate.

Marc Fernandez, client partner, Inviqa

What learning-based benefits does Inviqa offer?

We offer everyone £800 a year (€900 for our German staff) to spend on ‘personal learning’, plus travel, accommodation, expenses, and up to 10 days a year to attend these conferences and training courses.

Where ‘company learning’ is concerned, we encourage our people to get formal certifications in relevant technologies and approaches, and we provide them with study guides, exam vouchers, and time off for self-study.

We encourage cross-functional moves so Inviqans can transition into new areas and learn new roles on-the-job. We also offer an extensive internal training catalogue and plenty of on-the-project coaching, plus opportunities to learn from your peers. 

Exclusive to Inviqans, Icon is our regular internal conference. It brings together colleagues from across all our offices to share knowledge and experience gained working on some of the most exciting digital initiatives. Icon also provides valuable opportunities to gain speaking experience in a friendly environment, and makes sure everyone has a chance to hear what’s going on in other offices and teams.
We welcome new ideas and initiatives from across the company. And our Innovation Labs initiative takes the best of these ideas and develops them from concept to reality. We encourage everyone to get involved; all you need is an idea that could help a client or colleague!


Nick Abbot and his dog

Outside work, Nick is a dog owner, freshwater angler, walker, fitness coach, and more!