3 Technology Trends Impacting Workplace Learning

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New tech trends are drastically changing the look of learning in the modern workplace. Here are three to watch out for.

Technology is drastically changing learning in the workplace.

The quest for knowledge has always been at the root of corporate learning because people with knowledge perform better—people want to know they have access to professional development opportunities when they join a company. Millennial employees especially are looking to work for companies that make it easy to learn. According to a report from PwC, most millennials ranked training and development as the benefit they would most value from an employer.

With technology advancing at a rapid pace, however, employees of all stripes are being required to learn a bevy of new skills in order to perform, succeed and thrive in the modern workforce. Because of that, today’s employees want answers faster than ever before when it comes to training and onboarding because they want to be able to perform better in a world that’s experiencing quick technological transformation.

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Luckily, there’s been significant investments in learning technologies lately to make that happen. Here are three key tech-enabled workplace trends that are impacting learning:

Video learning

Today’s learners expect a modern learning experience, and that includes the quick delivery of “how to” nuggets of knowledge. Video is increasingly becoming the primary driver of learning content and it’s increasingly easy to leverage thanks to the proliferation of video platforms like YouTube and the push by social platforms like Facebook and Twitter to make it a more crucial component of the user experience.

When it comes to corporate learning, it’s really all about getting more content to users in a “just-in-time” fashion. Video content is going to be the best delivery method going forward. According to Aragon Research, video will replace text documents as the leading form of digital content by the end of 2018—with video learning, modules can be shorter, retention is higher (visual images are retained in the human brain longer than text), and it’s the way people want to learn.

Another impactful use of video in the workplace is for social assessment, which is about enabling feedback from peers, coaches, mentors, and managers on demonstrations of skill.

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Mobile learning

Enabling mobile learning in the workplace has become much more important.

According to a study from Statcounter, mobile web usage overtook desktop web usage for the first time ever in 2016, and Aragon Research says that by the end of 2017, 75% of businesses will be harnessing mobile collaboration. Mobile devices are clearly popular and there’s a growing corporate focus on the benefits of mobile collaboration through text and app-enabled communication. Learners want to take their learning with them and that means content has to be mobile-first.

Mobile will be a critical part of the new digital workplace experience going forward.

Virtual learning assistants

Look for 2017 to be the year that virtual learning assistants break into the corporate learning market.

Powered by artificial intelligence, including machine learning and cognitive computing, virtual assistants are poised to help the corporate learning experience by doing things like recommending or finding courses, or helping employees to engage in other activities like voice-activated searches and meet specific training needs that help them along their learning journey.

In fact, Forbes recently cited a survey of 400 chief human resources officers conducted by the IBM Institute for Business Value which found that half of those surveyed recognize the power of cognitive computing to transform both talent development and acquisition.

It might start with interactive chatbots, but look for learning assistants to evolve very quickly. One day, it might look like a more advanced Siri for enterprise learning.

 

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