In 2018, some new trends will change the way corporations deliver learning to their employees.

Today’s corporate L&D landscape is changing at a rapid pace, but not all companies can keep up. After all, a lot of time, effort, and resources are required to implement just one training program. But with technological and adult learning trends influencing the way companies invest in training, it’s easy to see how learning managers and HR leaders can get overwhelmed with their options.

But setting this aside, let’s look at one of the latest buzz words in the world of corporate learning and development: disruption. Now, learning has become more accessible than ever, with education technology companies developing instructional content and making it available online for a fee, or sometimes even for free. Certificates are then awarded for those who complete such online courses. It’s becoming increasingly easier for individuals to gain access to resources and learn whatever they please. In terms of corporate L&D, it seems that they are beginning to slowly adapt the same model of such learning providers to give their employees a wider range of topics and skills to learn.

Shift to employee-centric learning methods

In the last decade, corporate L&D has made a shift towards more employee-centric learning methods. Corporate training in a number of global companies have veered away from traditional learning settings (e.g. classrooms) and instead have brought training closer to the learner by literally making it available wherever he or she is. This is often done through micro-sized learning modules made available on mobile devices—understanding the need for professionals to be on the go most of the time and having very limited time to focus on their training.  This is often combined with smart tools that recommend resources to address specific training goals or skill gaps.

So little time, so much to learn

According to Deloitte, the average learner of today is “overwhelmed, distracted, and impatient,” having only 1% of a typical work week to focus on training and development. This results to about 24 minutes per week. That’s why L&D and training providers, as well as the companies that employ their services, must have a good understanding of how learning occurs. Professionals now require untethered access to their training, on-demand wherever and whenever in a collaborative space and in an empowered manner (Deloitte).

Digital learning encompasses elearning and blended learning

Bersin by Deloitte founder Josh Bersin wrote on his website that digital learning is no longer defined merely by learning on one’s mobile device. Rather, it now means “bringing learning to where employees are.” Instead of a “type of learning,” it is now a “way of learning.” Learning providers for corporate L&D are now moving towards a “learning experience” rather than just a “learning method,” changing the way they design their training and development modules. Today, blended learning is no longer detached from elearning, as it combines both the quick, on-demand model of elearning on both computers and mobile devices, and the human aspect of having instructors present via virtual classrooms, one-on-one distance lessons, or face-to-face lessons.

LMS need to evolve and keep up

This doesn’t mean that digital learning completely erases the relevance of LMS’ in today’s learning landscape. On top of housing the entire corporation’s learning data, it can go beyond and serve a different purpose as a performance management and reporting tool that will aid L&D leaders and HR managers in making the biggest training decisions. This will go hand in hand with the concept of learner analytics, which according to Adobe’s eLearning Trends and Predictions for 2018 report will be vital in “understanding the learners’ behavior and what can be done to improve the motivation, engagement, and application of on-the-job learning.”

In the foreseeable future, corporate L&D will be disrupted more by the way learning occurs amongst professionals. Employees are now hyper-connected and in touch with technology and are quick adapters to its rapid changes. Corporate L&D can and will take advantage of this relationship between humans and their mobile devices as a way to deliver learning in a more effective and efficient way.

 

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