5 Keys to Streamlining LearningPosted on: December 18, 2015
It’s time to streamline
Streamlined learning is all about making it easier to create, customize, deliver and consume the knowledge that employees need to improve their job performance, whenever and wherever they are. With increased pressure on L&D to meet the rapidly-changing needs of the business—to compress turnaround time on learning programs, plus identify how learning directly links to the bottom line—we think it’s more important than ever to streamline learning across the organization.
Here are 5 tips:
1. Develop a learning strategy that aligns with overall business objectives. To truly impact the business, L&D needs to invest resources in activities that directly help the organization meet its business objectives. Improving L&D alignment with business objectives involves the following:
- Linking overall business objectives to departmental or group objectives.
- Outlining individual performance objectives that are required to meet the departmental objectives.
- Identifying individual core job behaviors, that when performed consistently, will help employees meet their performance objectives.
- Defining learning that will provide the knowledge employees need to perform job behaviors properly and consistently.
Once there is a learning strategy in place that aligns with business objectives, L&D can truly prove the value of learning and impact on the business as a whole.
2. Provide consistent training through short microlearning modules. Microlearning is the next big trend in corporate learning and it’s no wonder. The fire hose approach to training simply doesn’t work. Microlearning takes a far more streamlined approach to driving knowledge growth and sustainment. Not only can the microlearning content being delivered be more tightly tailored to an individual’s job function, but unlike traditional methods, microlearning can zero in on what the employee knows and doesn’t know. Additionally, adopting a microlearning approach provides the opportunity for learning organizations to escape the inflexibility associated with massive course development and become more agile. Microlearning module updates can be made quickly and efficiently, ensuring learning keeps pace with changing business requirements.
3. Separate “need to know” from “nice to know”. There’s a tendency to train employees on everything possible. But, it’s better to take a strategic and practical approach to determine what they need in their heads versus what they need at their fingertips. For information they only need once in awhile, allow employees to access knowledge directly at the point of need, by using a knowledge-on-demand performance support capability. This means employees can search for the information they need, when they need it, without having to keep that knowledge top of mind.
4. Define and track behaviors that drive success. It’s not enough to simply provide learning, organizations need to identify consistent job behaviors that lead to superior performance. This information should be passed on to leaders and managers. Have them observe behaviors and document whether or not employees are exhibiting them to correlate performance to job actions. Then, have them provide coaching and mentoring in areas that employees find challenging. A consistent, streamlined methodology will allow the organization to truly track and impact job performance as well as the bottom line.
5. Use an integrated solution to deliver streamlined learning. Streamlining learning takes effort, and the ability to coordinate a variety of activities and inputs, to keep on top of what employees need at any moment in time. In an ideal world, a solution that allows you to integrate all components into a single, easy-to-manage platform,that can be used in every part of the organization, can be extremely beneficial. Specifically, this type of solution would:
- Allow you to deliver daily microlearning content, adapted to each individual employee’s requirements and knowledge gaps.
- Provide multiple access points to allow employees to access learning whenever and wherever they wish (i.e. mobile, POS system, desktop, etc.)
- Offer knowledge-on-demand so employees can access information at the point of need.
- Accept behavior observation inputs from supervisors, and allow those inputs to modify learning content to ensure learning drives proper job behaviors.
- Highlight areas where employees need additional learning to fill knowledge gaps, or where coaching or mentoring is required.
- Provide comprehensive reporting and analytics to allow you to identify the value of learning and link it directly to business outcomes.
If you deploy a solution that does all this, plus leverages the latest brain science techniques and employ methods to engage employees in their learning success, you can create a streamlined learning ecosystem that’s designed to be responsive to—and contribute directly to—the business bottom line.