Tenet #3: Corporate eLearning in Snippets
The majority of workers view continuous training as essential or important to career success. According to the Pew Research Center’s 2016 report, The State of American Jobs, “54% see continuous learning as essential. 33% see it as important.”
The report goes on to explain that “Tectonic changes are reshaping U.S. workplaces as the economy moves deeper into the knowledge focused age. These changes are affecting the very nature of jobs by rewarding social, communications and analytical skills. They are prodding many workers to think about lifetime commitments to retraining and upgrading their skills. And they may be prompting a society-wide reckoning about where those constantly evolving skills should be learned…”
While there is strong consensus that professional skill building opportunities are critical, there is also a perceived lack of it being provided within the organization.
This is underscored in the bi-annual BEDC Workforce Engagement Survey where, since 2009, more than 40% of life science workers believe there are not nearly enough relevant opportunities for learning and growth built into their work experience.
Technology makes it possible to bring learning and professional development into the workplace with less outlay in cost and time than previously imagined.
And, with the advent of mobile friendly video learning platforms (filled with rich subject matter content), eLearning can be done anywhere, and at any time.
No longer do employees need to sit for hours-on-end reading from their desktop monitors. Online courseware is now divided into snippets – short lessons often referred to as micro-learning.
Usually 3-7 minutes in length, these lessons can be viewed from a tablet or smart phone delivering learning in small bites – a just-in-time approach. Whether during a coffee break or over a lunchtime veggie burrito – digital based learning provides your organization (and team mates) with tremendous flexibility.
But, think before acting. There’s also a need to do your due diligence.
In a 2017 eLearning blog HR and Learning professionals are cautioned to think before adopting learning technology in 6 Things To Consider Before You Jump On The eLearning Bandwagon.
- Research, research, research.
If you hear a new idea that you find exciting, read up about it from as many valid sources as possible before deciding to jump onto the eLearning bandwagon. Note that I say “valid sources” because, in this digital age, it is all too easy to find arguments to support our own opinion. A valid source, on the other hand, is a neutral voice that provides an informed analysis of the pros and cons of the idea.
- Reject extreme viewpoints, whether for or against.
Extreme viewpoints don’t serve anyone. What we need are balanced perspectives.
- Examine your own intentions and expectations.
Are you trying to adopt the new idea to genuinely improve your work and obtain better results, or just to show some change? If it’s the latter, step back and take stock. You can always decide to jump in once you have clarity.
- If you do decide to implement the idea, keep a watch on how it’s doing.
If, at some point, you realize that it is not working, perform an analysis to find out why, rather than rejecting the whole idea as a dud. It is possible that there were flaws in the implementation, or that some environmental factors prevented it from working the way you intended it to work.
- Remember that any new idea, technology, application, or concept is just a tool.
Every tool comes with its own possibilities and limitations, and the effectiveness of the tool is ultimately determined by the way in which it is implemented.
- Keep in mind that no tool can be a panacea for all ills.
No matter what the latest buzzword is, it cannot replace fundamental principles of good design.
Bottom line? Look for eLearning systems that can do the following, but be sure to do your due diligence before buying:
- Mobile-friendly video-based learning platforms
- If in life science settings, interactive courseware that bridges the gap between science & business
- Snippet (micro-learning) lesson format (4-7 minutes)
- Downloadable resources and templates
- Remember Me (stop and return functionality)
- Easy Navigation
- Progress Reports
- Quiz metrics with review and retry functionality
Co-Founder / CEO, ZBglobal, Inc.
Victoria Tucker is the Chief Dreamer at ZBglobal, where she lends her 30+ years of experience on pivotal topics like workforce collaboration, engagement, mentoring and project management. She also plays ukulele…but not very well. Reach out to her!