Ongoing Development, Technology and Product

So much content, so little time…

Posted on: June 11, 2021Updated on: February 26, 2024By: JD Dillon, Chief Learning Architect

Netflix. HBO Max. Amazon Prime. Disney+. I’m a few clicks away from a bottomless collection of streaming digital content. Then why am I still watching reruns of The Office over and over again? Am I just a big Steve Carrell fan? He’s great and all, but I don’t think that’s the reason.

I just get so overwhelmed every time I turn on my TV. Which app should I open? Which category should I browse? I have a perpetual supply of entertainment options, but I can’t figure out where to start or what fits me best. So, rather than try something new, I stick with the folks at Dunder Mifflin because I know what I’m going to get. In doing so, I’m probably missing out on lots of great stuff.

Digital learning has a lot in common with streaming. Employees get overwhelmed by thousands of courses, articles and videos. They can’t figure out where to start or which resources will help them solve their most pressing problems. So they stick with what they’re doing now and learning engagement declines. This is especially true on the frontline, where employees in grocery, retail, manufacturing, contact centers and logistics don’t have time to browse content catalogues. They need training that meets them where they are, whether they’ve done their job for 20 minutes or 20 years. And they need a learning experience that fits into the few minutes they have to focus on their development every shift.

There may not be a great solution for my streaming struggles, but there is one that can help your employees get just the right training at the right time: adaptive learning.

Photo credit – @geraldfriedrich2 / Pixabay

What is adaptive learning, really?

Adaptive learning is a new concept for many organizations. As a result, it can sometimes be misrepresented or misunderstood. 

Many practitioners and vendors connect adaptive learning to the concept of pre-assessment. An employee takes an exam before they begin their training. Then, based on their results, they can skip past or “test out of” sections of the program. This helps the employee get done with training and into the operation more quickly. Sounds like a great idea, right? Well…

Photo credit – McGraw Hill

This approach has the same limitation as many traditional learning methods. It’s based on a single moment in time. It assumes an employee has mastered topics based only on a few test questions. Giving people the chance to prove what they already know makes sense, but what happens if they just guessed and got the correct answers? How can you make sure they’re really ready to make the right decisions on the job? 

How Axonify continuously adapts learning on the frontline

Axonify shifts workplace learning from a moment in time to a continuous experience. We know people are always learning, always forgetting, always developing, always evolving. That’s why our AI-powered adaptive engine reshapes the learning experience for every employee every time they log in—not just during the first visit.

Here’s how Axonify delivers personalized learning at scale.


The Methodology

Our methodology is grounded in results. We don’t just want to get people through training faster. We want to sustain knowledge, change behavior and drive measurable business results. We show companies how to build content that connects the dots between training and outcomes. Reducing seat time and related training expenses is great. But increasing sales, decreasing safety incidents, improving CSAT and raising productivity is even better. 


The Technology

The Axonify platform brings our methodology to life. Our mobile-first application design makes completing training easier than posting on TikTok—and much, much simpler than finding a movie to watch on Netflix. Our adaptive algorithms personalize the experience for each employee so their limited time is focused on the topics and programs that matter most. Today, a store associate may receive a reinforcement activity on a new product or process. Tomorrow, it might be time for them to complete a compliance update. Axonify keeps track so you don’t have to. 

Then, engagement tactics like gameplay, progress, achievements and rewards keep employees coming back. This combination of simplicity, personalization and fun brings over 80% of Axonify users worldwide back to the app on average 2-3 times per week. No more chasing people down to complete training, and no need to rely on reminder emails and notifications. People do it because it works. 

Bonus: 30% of Axonify users also regularly engage in extra training.


The Data

Axonify collects a lot of data. A LOT of data. When an employee answers a multiple choice question, we pick up 10 unique data points, such knowledge growth, confidence level and topical progression. We then merge our learning experience data with your business metrics to identify the real-world strengths and opportunities for each employee. This is how Axonify adapts and targets training during every session at scale. It’s also how we apply machine learning to connect your training programs directly to business results. You can finally say HELLO to Level 4 (impact) and Level 5 (ROI) of learning measurement! 

Plus, Axonify’s data collection, management and application practices align with regulatory requirements, including GDPR, as well as privacy and information technology best practices. 


The Content

Even the best technology is only as good as the content it delivers. Imagine if Disney+ just played reruns of Home on the Range over and over again. I shudder at the thought.

Axonify is committed to educating our customers and partners. We walk you through our methodology so you can build and manage your own content. You can also transfer over your existing, high-value courses or integrate content from your LMS or LCMS. Lastly, every customer has access to the Axonify Content Marketplace, a purpose-built library of 500+ microlearning topics specially designed to meet the needs of the frontline workforce. 

Today, most of our digital experiences are personalized. Entertainment, shopping, social media—they all try to deliver just the right content every time we pop in. It’s time for companies to apply this concept and provide right-fit training for every employee, regardless of role, location or experience. While streaming platforms and shopping apps may not always get their recommendations quite right, Axonify applies a proven combination of methodology, tech, data and content to enable right-fit skill development for your frontline workforce. 

Learn more about our approach by checking out the Ultimate Guide to Personalization and Adaptive Learning.

BTW – if you have any streaming content recommendations that take place outside of Scranton, Pennsylvania, please let me know on Twitter via @JD_Dillon

JD Dillon, Chief Learning Architect's Headshot

JD Dillon, Chief Learning Architect

JD Dillon became an expert on frontline training and enablement over two decades working in operations and talent development with dynamic organizations, including Disney, Kaplan and AMC. A respected author and speaker in the workplace learning community, JD also continues to apply his passion for helping frontline employees around the world do their best work every day in his role as Axonify's Chief Learning Architect.

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