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Nine out of 10 business leaders will maintain or increase training budgets over next year

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More than nine out of 10 (93%) UK business leaders plan to either maintain or increase their training budgets over the next year, according to research published today by global e-learning provider SkillSoft and OpinionMatters.

The independent study, conducted by OpinionMatters on behalf of SkillSoft, took place at the end of November 2011 and involved telephone interviews with more than 500 CEOs / MDs with 250+ employees across 13 business sectors.

The results revealed 31% of businesses plan to increase training budgets by 10% over the next 12 months. This figure rises to 41% in the sales and marketing industries, and to 44% in the manufacturing industry.

Just 3.6% of businesses planning to reduce their training budgets over the coming year.

Kevin Young, managing director of SkillSoft EMEA, said: "This research is evidential proof that organisations are continuing to emphasise the importance of training and development.

"But many of these companies might be missing a trick - only 6.6% of CEOs polled said that return on investment is the top selection criteria in choosing a training programme. Unfortunately some organisations don't realise the importance of ROI, as it should be a higher criteria when discussing learning and development."