It’s the end of the year which means we’re being inundated with a plethora of “2017 LMS Trends” articles, all of which seem like slightly different variations on the same tune. It seems as though the same trendy eLearning buzzwords appear on these lists year after year…
Collaborative and Social
So, after years of reading through these lists, we are well aware of how unusable they are. Staying abreast of important trends in L&D is crucial to the success of an organization’s learning strategy. The ability to understand how these trends fit into a plan for success is even more important. So instead of giving you the same trendy list of buzzwords as everyone else, we wanted to offer you some actionable ideas you can implement in the coming year. These four New Year’s resolutions also follow some larger trends we believe are happening in the industry right now.
1) Increase Buy-In from Senior Level Management
Signs are pointing to subtle shifts in the attitude senior-level officials have towards corporate eLearning. Senior personnel are taking more notice of the vital role L&D plays in creating successful and happy employees & workplaces. Though, increased buy-in is likely to come with increased scrutiny too. Be prepared to demonstrate in the boardroom how L&D is vital to the company’s success.
Your Resolution: Work to demonstrate the critical role your LMS plays in the success of your company. Make an effort to bring up your LMS and learning objectives in meetings with senior management whenever possible. Help it become a regular talking point at all meetings. Position your LMS as the point of contact for all things in your company including communications and important announcements.
2) Use Data and Analytics to Influence and Guide your L&D Strategy
This has been a long time coming to the L&D world, and although most modern LMS’s offer reporting and analytics, these tools are poised to play a more significant role in measuring and tracking company learning. With real-time analytics and feedback available, the ability to set key objectives and results with each piece of learning will become critical to shaping every piece of content that goes out to your team members.
Your Resolution: First off, if you don’t have an LMS which provides you with data and analytics, consider getting one. If you already have an LMS which delivers analytics and data, make sure you are using that data to strategically approach your L&D goals. Assign objects and key results to all of your learning content and track them meticulously. Make incremental improvements over time using your data. Be diligent about tracking and assessing your LMS content to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
3) Diversify your Delivery
The workforce is changing rapidly, and with millennials expected to make up 75% of the workforce by 2025, it’s crucial for companies to diversify how and when they’re delivering learning. Mobile responsive learning portals need to be ready for a shift to a native app within the next few years as learning content continues to change.
Your Resolution: Think outside the box when it comes to delivering learning. If you’re stuck with an enterprise LMS or no LMS at all, try looking to YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, or even Snapchat to deliver lessons to your learners. Survey your learners to figure out how and when they want their learning delivered. Although the jury is still out on how virtual and augmented reality will make waves in eLearning, keeping these kinds of technology advances in mind will ensure that you are able to take full advantage of them when they do finally come into their own.
4) Think Strategically About your Content
eLearning content is being forced to adapt as mobile, and non-traditional learning becomes the norm. SCORM seems to be on the way out in favor of technology which is more easily scaleable to different devices. Microlearning has caught on as a trendy way to deliver content to increasingly short attention spans and video is accelerating to a position of dominance as the learning genre of choice for many people. Courses can now be quickly put together by mixing off-the-shelf e-learning modules with policy documents and simple videos. All of this points to a seismic shift in LMS content.
Your Resolution: Think about what kind of content is most engaging to your learners. Make a commitment to think outside of text-heavy manuals and SCORM modules to tap into the learning your team members want to learn from. Try using new types of videos, podcasts, microlearning, and gamification tactics to engage your learners. This also ties into what we said before, set objectives and measure the impact of your content to figure out what’s working.
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