Seeking growth and prosperity? Educate your workforce

Everyone likes to start the New Year off right, which is the basis for most resolutions. top_contentpage_bg_3 Not just on a yearly or quarterly basis, but continually. And not just for incoming recruits, but for employees across the board.

Learning processes are continually evolving, not only technologically speaking (in terms of how information is disseminated), but in terms of the big picture (e.g., responding to outside events in real-time) and the trend toward incorporating agility into the corporate mindset. Keeping this in mind, the following are several things to consider as we head into 2015, all of which can promote continuous learning in your organization.

Agile learning – a hybrid approach: Before jumping all the way onto the agile bandwagon, consider first adopting a hybrid approach to development and design – using both traditional and agile methods.

“In simple terms, if the desired solutions cannot be easily articulated or have a great deal of unknowns, then an agile, iterative approach might be a powerful tool,” says Matt Donovan in a recent Talent Management article. “For example, if you are designing a learning solution for an evolving business process, an agile approach would be appropriate. However, if you are designing a linear Web-based course on an approved policy or procedure using an established template, a traditional approach would be more efficient.”

Agility means continuous learning and improvement and the ability to adapt and change as needs arise, which is sometimes easier said than done. To help promote this, make sure learning is relevant to the job, especially in regard to leadership development. Management should also ensure that team members are cross trained and open to collaboration.

Video: Who among us hasn’t looked up how to do something on YouTube? We probably all have, as video has become a powerful mainstream teaching tool. Stats from Google and Ispos MediaCT state that 67 percent of smartphone users watch video and that 14 percent of these people use video at least once a day. Video is an engaging, easy way to educate your workforce. By accessing seminars and modules, one can learn from anywhere, anytime.

DIY eLearning: Today, user-friendly technology allows companies to create their own content. Companies can research which rapid authoring tools would be most appropriate and create the ideal learning environment using one of the many affordable tools available.

Learning on the go: A recent report found that 80 percent of smartphone users don’t leave home without their device. In addition, Ambient Insight’s 2012-2017 Worldwide Mobile Learning Market Report estimated that global revenues for the mLearning (mobile learning) market reach $12.2 billion by 2017. With statistics like these, companies would do well to offer learning opportunities via these devices; there will be significant time and cost savings to boot. Note, however, that Mlearning is best suited for communicating smaller, more condensed bits of info that can be learned quickly (e.g., while standing in a line for a bus). Training can also be complemented with online user guides.

Tin Can API: The physical process of eLearning (electronic educational technology) is a market that research company Global Industry Analysts estimates will reach $107 billion this year. Tin Can API is a popular eLearning software that records and tracks all types of learning experiences – both traditional and informal – all of which are stored in a Learning Record Store (LRS).