We all have our predictions on how the elearning industry will develop in 2018. The important question is – are you ready to be part of the change? Here are three achievable resolutions you can make to keep up with new trends and create more effective learning this year.
From predicitions to practicalities
With so many articles on how the workplace learning industry will change in 2018, you might expect to see as many different predictions as authors. But in fact, there are clear patterns which we distilled into our blog on research-backed predictions, drawing on research from Towards Maturity, Fosway, LinkedIn Learning and many more. The main message is ‘less is more’; there’s a desire to cut through the noise and focus on relevant, practical training and content sharing that we can prove makes a difference.
So how do you get there? Which content deserves to stay, what needs to go, and how can you make sure every new piece you create is worthwhile?
Here are three resolutions we’ll be sticking to this year, in order to create more effective elearning.
1. Teach skills, not knowledge
A theme from many pieces of research is that organisations will continue to respond to the fast-paced, changeable nature of work by equipping their people with transferable skills such as leadership and communication rather than role-specific knowledge. This is a smart, strategic move – as more operations become automated over the coming years, the companies that thrive will be the ones who have nurtured creativity, problem solving and adaptability in their employees.
Whether you’re strategizing for the year ahead or thinking about the delivery of a specific piece of training, you can focus on skills by asking yourself these questions:
- Why does this training deserve to exist? What is it helping our people or our business achieve?
- What do I want people to DO differently after this training, rather than what do I want them to know?
- How can I use the training time to allow people to develop and practice rather than read and memorise?
There are some great frameworks out there to help you shift the focus of your training from theory to practice. We’d recommend Cathy Moore’s action mapping to help you structure your content, and our own Project Plan Template and Conceptualize Elearning Guide to help you nail down your objectives and design around them.
2. Empower your people to share their knowledge
The tide is definitely turning away from formal top-down training and towards informal sharing between peers, as shown by last year’s 38% rise in user-generated content. This is great news for L&D teams. Not only are there employees who are willing to contribute to content creation, but because those people are immersed in the business rather than in a central function, the fruits of their labour will automatically be relevant and accessible for others.
At the start of your next project, consider whether there are high performers in the organization who could film a short video case study to share their perspective, or contribute top tips to your training. Then take it a step further – can you empower those contributors to create their own online training from scratch? Cloud-based authoring tools such as Elucidat allow you to set up templates for others to work into, saving them time and creating a polished output at the end. Grassroots content-sharing is yours for the taking.
3. Build data into your routine
If there’s one resolution that will reap multiple rewards, it’s using data to listen to your learners and inform your strategy. Imagine your plan for 2018 being informed by surveys that allowed your users to tell you what they need, analytics that showed you optimum course length, preferred devices and much more, and detailed tracking that revealed knowledge gaps that need attention. Get your data in place this year, and this dream could be a reality for 2019.
As a cloud-based tool that tracks data for over 3 million learners, we at Elucidat have learnt a thing or two about the power of analytics. Check out our list of the Top 10 Elearning Analytics Stats to Track, and decide which will offer you the most meaningful insights to inform and refine your strategy.
If you’re aiming to reduce costs or boost productivity in 2018, you might be interested in monitoring the time it takes to author a course and the time ‘away from the job’ learners need to complete it. Or if you’re looking close a specific performance gap, you can take a close look at exactly who is choosing the optimum path through your final assessed scenario. Knowledge is power, and proactively monitoring your elearning courses with the right authoring tool will give you that power.
For more ideas and inspiration on what data analytics can do for you, download our free guide on How to Use Data to Design and Refine Elearning.
By focusing on skills, enabling peer-to-peer knowledge sharing and making the most of data, you can spend 2018 creating elearning that you know is relevant and useful. And as an added bonus, you’ll have data to help you iterate, improve, and back up your hard work. We’ll toast to that – happy new year!
Do you have your own resolutions for next year? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Did you miss our article on predictions for 2018? Read it and access all the research here.