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Public Sector L&D: 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up

By and

Thu Dec 07 2023

Public Sector L&D: 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up

This year proved to be memorable for L&D in the public sector, highlighting the necessity of understanding the future role of data and how it will shape training across the enterprise. From the digital data highway that needs to be created to the policies that will govern collection, storage, and analysis of that data, the US government is in a position of significant evolution. And while the Learning Agenda of 2022 within the President’s Management Agenda highlights the need to refocus on learning, bridge silos, and encourage partnerships and research with industry, less clarity exists for how to accomplish these goals.

Further, the introduction and wide proliferation of generative artificial intelligence (AI) over this year has highlighted the requirement to upskill public sector personnel to understand how to use it, exploit it, and prepare for what affordances it will provide into the future. Let’s look back at some highlights of 2023.


ATD Government Workforce Conference

To support these challenges and goals, ATD’s Government Workforce conference was held on September 12, 2023, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in downtown Washington, DC. This event brought together 300 public- and private-sector individuals and companies to discuss concerns, goals, and processes—helping to bridge and connect both within and across the various silos of workers elevating learning platforms and support. Key highlights from the meeting include discussions around the coordinated effort that will be required to develop the digital data highway, creating a culture of accountability, and coaching across the federal enterprise.

Talent Development in Government Webinar Series

Beyond the conference, ATD launched a new webinar series focused on key talent development issues in government. The four webinars hosted in 2023 welcomed hundreds of professionals across the enterprise and focused on topics such as:

Modernizing the Federal Workforce E-Book

This year also saw the release of ATD’s first government-focused publication, Modernizing the Federal Workforce. This e-book focuses on defining a holistic strategic plan for modernizing the federal workforce learning, development, and human infrastructure. It’s available for free download here. It lays out six key steps:

1. Instantiate a personnel data highway: Create the technical backbone for large-scale people analytics, tracking, and support.

2. Involve industry in modernization efforts: Pool resources and combine actions that can work together to implement a sustainable yet agile workforce development ecosystem.


3. Reimagine workplace design and location: Design workspaces with a human-centered approach, considering organizational needs, human desires, and technological feasibility.

4. Create diverse work and developmental pathways: Create strategies to support flexibility, career growth, and an enriched work-life experience.

5. Ensure training and talent professionals are prepared to meet workforce development needs: Use the data highway to collect, store, analyze, and inform training and talent development needs to ensure the workforce can be successful in their roles.

6. Develop policy that supports every layer required for modernization efforts to be effective: Policy decisions must be made to facilitate learning to navigate the evolving educational landscape and contribute to the success of organizations.

What’s Next for 2024?

As we look to 2024, ATD will highlight and support work focused on all of these topics. To that end, ATD is designing and planning many new activities to help facilitate connections between industry and the public sector, including:


Quarterly webinars: Our Talent Development in Government webinar series will continue in 2024. Stay on top of our full webinar calendar at webcasts.td.org.

Expanded programming at ATD 2024: The ATD 2024 International Conference & Exposition will be held on May 19–22 in New Orleans. We’re continuing to grow and expand our government program at this event, hosting our first-ever lunch & learn discussion in addition to several sessions focused on government issues.

Government Workforce 2024 conference: The conference will return to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center on September 5, 2024. If you are interested in speaking at this event or suggesting areas of focus, please contact Justin Brusino at [email protected].

We’re excited about the progress and momentum from the past year, and we look forward to a productive 2024.

Watch for new plans and more information as the year unfolds!

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