7 secrets to implementing effective technology enabled learning solutions
- Getting the balance right. First off, it’s important to get the balance right between technology-led and more formal training interventions. In Asia, classroom training remains a key form of learning delivery, due to cultural variables and the importance of face-to-face interaction. This history can’t simply be swept under the carpet which is why it is important to get the right balance, a key reason why blended learning – a combination between technology-enhanced and traditional classroom learning – is so prevalent in Asia today.
- Don’t forget the human touch. Linked to this, it’s crucial not to sacrifice the human touch in all aspects of learning at the expense of the latest next fad or next big technology. Today, 79% of Asian learners receive classroom training and this is likely to continue. The blend is the key to learning, to a large extent, based on demand and learners pacing themselves through more accessible and more productive training.
- Give some structure & direction to your informal learning. For all the potential benefits of informal learning, it is also important to give some structure to it and ensure that employees are not aimlessly wondering around cyberspace looking for answers. Research by IDC, for example, found that knowledge workers spend 15-30% of their time gathering information where less than 50% of that information was relevant. Learners still require some kind of direction and learning activities must still combine to focus on one learning goal or outcome.
- The importance of measurement. Similarly, no matter how informal and independent the learning may be, it still needs to be instantly measurable with a clear focus on ROI. In this way, learner progress can continue to be charted and the significant investments in technology can always be evaluated.
- Make sure the learner is on board. The learner must be involved and must see the training as relevant to their role and development. This includes the learner having some input into the technologies and tools they use. To this end, learning professionals are key to many organisations’ success today in developing a coherent technology-enabled work strategy.
- Don’t just get wowed by the technology. It’s also vital to understand technology for what it is – an immensely powerful ‘facilitator’ and ‘enabler’ that can bring knowledge to individuals in many different ways. But that shouldn't drive away the focus from the content. The focus must continue to remain on the content and the types of skills being acquired – so critical in Asia today where there are such worrying talent shortages and where there is a real deficit in technical competencies.
- The power of integration. Technology success tends to always be greater than the sum of its parts. Whether it be web portals or social networks to drive informal learning, a Learning Management System LMS) to provide an enterprise-wide platform or the latest in gamification tools, technology works best and organisations benefit the most when technologies operate side by side.
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