Learning Platforms Implementation: Change Management in Enterprise
The introduction of a new learning platform, or the transition from one system to another, is a change management initiative. Having the right stakeholder involvement and a clear, agreed strategy and plan will make for a smoother implementation and a higher uptake among end users, for the ultimate achievement of learning goals.
The successful adoption of a learning platform will mean that most of the organisation’s workplace learning such as compliance training, skills training and professional development will take place within a single platform. Next-gen learning platforms offer a variety of features and tools to help transform learning in the workplace and support a culture of continuous learning and development.
For such a transformation to occur, stakeholders, administrators, learning coordinators and team leads must be comfortable with programme goals and play their part in the implementation.
A clear change management strategy should guide the overall process, covering five important components:
1.Build a team
Having the right team to manage the change is essential. It should represent all stakeholder groups and all members must understand their roles and what is expected of them. Members should participate in adoption strategy planning sessions and be responsible for their own actions from the plan.
At minimum one person from each of the following stakeholder groups is recommended:
- Executive leadership – ultimately, the learning culture of the organisation will develop from the foundations and examples set by the leadership team. The role of this team member is to be the sponsor and key advocate for the programme
- Line managers – this stakeholder group need the learning platform to build and maintain the right skills in their teams. Their role is to communicate the strategy among their teams and generate buy-in from learners
- The learning & development team – a learning platform is the tool to enable the learning to meet L&D objectives. This team member is the owner of the strategy and decision-maker for the implementation
- Employees – the users of the system. Their feedback throughout implementation and in-life is essential
- IT, HR and finance – this group is invested in the technology and in a return on investment of the programme. These team members will support and enable elements of the adoption
- Content creators and trainers – the knowledge source for the training content and developers of the workflows in the system.
2. Set goals
The goals will determine the implementation plan, so it’s important they’re specific and achievable. Each goal should be associated with one or more organisational objectives and actions which should have named owners and a timeline of delivery.
It helps to also understand which tools and features in the learning platform will be used to help achieve the goals.
The communication plan should contain four clear components:
- Determine the message – it should explain the what? why? and how? of the initiative
- Share the message – there are many ways to do this, so think beyond standard communications vehicles in your organisation. You could, for example, have competitions, ‘lunch and learn’ sessions and ‘getting started’ workshops
- Spread the message – share best practice, learning tips and tricks, host webinars and perhaps organise a peer mentoring programme. There are many ways to maintain momentum once the programme rollout is underway
- Realign the message – this ‘closes the loop’ on the communication programme and involves gathering and sharing of success stories and acting on feedback.
4. Adoption strategy planning
The adoption strategy sets the short and long-term goals for the learning platform and the training plan for each stakeholder group. It also needs to cover the ongoing management of the learning platform in-life, including technical considerations such as user roles and permissions and keeping the platform updated, and how the data from the platform will be used to make data-driven decisions.
5. Plan, Achieve, Measure
This is the execution of the plan. It isn’t a linear undertaking, rather it’s a cycle of planning, achieving and measuring with continuous assessment of achievements against goals throughout the transformation journey; always with the flexibility within the process to adjust plans when necessary.
For more information on managing change when implementing a learning platform in your organisation, access our strategy guide where you can also create your own personalised plan – your ‘Adoption Playbook’.