Within the last few years, I have been observed rapid changes in corporate training paradigms, along with consumer education and needs analysis sectors. Specifically, businesses are investing too much in research to better understand how employees are gathering information and which kind of influences they find compelling for their decisions. These are the changing approaches or perhaps we should rather call them paradigm shifts. If I talk about corporate training, then e-learning, MOOCs, digital education etc all are the ways underneath the rapidly changing training scenarios all over the world. In this post, I wouldbe sharing with you the changes like that, which have been taking place quite a time ago, but still businesses need to explore them fully to better understand their significance.
Gartner predicts that in 2015, the changes in people, technology and corporate environment would initiate three new corporate training paradigms. Now, when we stand at the mid of the year, evidence is there that these trends have been accelerating into game-changers for businesses ready to take the benefit.
Here I am referring learners as people. In simple words, corporate audience is now more familiar with advanced strategies and technologies. They expect responsive and sophisticated training integrated into everything, from web design to social media to smart phone apps. This integration of branding, learning and point of need messaging is a fundamental driver of change. The challenge now faced by training providers is how to meet the expectations and requirements of the learners while still teaching them behavior change effectively. In this view, I would suggest organizations to plan their upcoming budgets for adjusting repurposed content for their learners’ changing expectations.
Moving ahead, it is anticipated a business environment having sophisticated learners expecting instructionally sound strategies and techniques, collaborated with rich-media content, including video learning and visuals aids for demonstration of concepts. However, the research is indicating just 39 percent of professional services firms intend to elevate their budget in coming year to focus employee engagement and meet these rising demands. Indeed, with the right technologies and smart strategies, employer can often enhance employee engagement without any extra cost.
Technology must be a resource that can be used to develop impactful training customized to learners’ requirements and preferences. Think of this way that learner realize enough now to expect their major technologies to adapt to their reference habits and workflows, not the other way round. Since last few years, these technology cycles have just continued to expand and have therefore enabled businesses having immediate access to a set of tools. The technology is accessible and ready to use. It is no more a stumbling block, but a resource that is waiting to be used.
As per Aberdeen Research, recently, for instance, there has been a two-way increase in the usage of mobile tools for the purpose of learning; highlighting mobile is no more a nice-to-have device for learning programs but a strategic element of any wider learning plan. We are now on the point where professionals must start looking at technology and asking not, “When should I do it?”, but “how can I begin transition assets to novel toolsets?” The simple transition would help getting to the basic issue: media habits are now changes, and obsolete approaches would deliver increasingly pathetic results. The training paradigms are shifting fast to take into account new models like MOOCs, distance learning, video learning, webinars and e-learning.
The Business Environment
Business environment is the last but a key driver, and may be the most important. 44 percent of professional services firms now define metrics earlier and 58 percent link the factor of employee engagement directly to their profitability, as per Gartner. We observe these numbers growing, and being a training and development professional, I feel a burden to react not just faster, but also with more business awareness and enhanced analytical models.
In my view, cases where success of training is measured in smile sheets and completions would become quite rare. The most successful businesses would approach training with real business outcomes in mind, a plan to decide and measure the effect of training and a performance sustained model that enable real time evaluation of the program. Fast training programs can then be applied when any metric seems below standard. In simple words, the right vision of training leaders would play the foremost role in business strategy, since enhanced analytics would show just how important an intelligent and responsive training strategy is to stay competitive in the industry. By starting with accurate needs analysis, businesses can surely determine the business results of the training initiatives and the key success measures for achieving those results. A measurable and observable business objective not just ensures that design strategy enhances behavior change, but also helps businesses measure alignments of this change to business outcomes.
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