We are going through a phase of significant and rapid “learning transformation“. This has led to an adoption of new, immersive approaches to creating impactful learning that can lead to the required performance gain. This is not all. We also see that L&D teams are on the look-out for measures to evaluate the effectiveness of learning.
As a Chief Learning Strategist, I have been part of many such opportunities across the world. The pointers shared by me here reflect my insights from this close interaction and collaboration.
For ease of applicability, I have banded various trends and predictions in 2018 into 3 tracks:
Usage of mLearning or Mobile learning adoption in corporate training saw a significant increase in 2017 and this trend will continue. With the maturing of authoring tools that are completely responsive, BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) flexibility in training policy will see an even more effective use of mLearning or mobile learning in 2018.
What I see changing in 2018, would be its wider application across all corporate training needs as well as its increased use to support informal learning and digitization of Instructor Led Training (ILT).
I also envision increased usage of formats that learners use in their daily life (notably, Apps and videos) to offer both formal and informal learning and more significantly reinforcements (through assessments supported by practice exercises leading to skill acquisition and mastery).
In my assessment, the digitization of ILT (particularly to blended rather than fully online) will see further acceleration.
I envision a higher usage of microlearning for pre-workshop and post-workshop collateral to support predominantly ILT programs.
The usage of microlearning began as nuggets to support traditional eLearning courses a few years ago. 2017 saw an acceleration in its adoption across most corporate training programs.
In 2018, I continue to see this momentum grow with more training programs using the power of microlearning for primary (formal training) and as just-in-time performance support (learning aids or job aids).
I also see an increase in the richness of the formats to offer microlearning. More significantly, I see leveraging on “learning paths” to not only offer a clear learning journey to the learners but also continuing the connection through the year (through a variety of nuggets).
Offering Performance Support Tools on smartphones, so that these learning aids are within the learner’s work-flow and available to them exactly at the moment of their learning need, will see an acceleration in 2018.
Leveraging on the popularity of microlearning, in 2018 too, PSTs will be used extensively to support primary formal training enabling organizations to see the application of the learning.
They will continue to support ILT training as well.
Till 5 years ago, gamification in corporate training was viewed with skepticism. From this perception to today’s reality, gamification (full or partial) has increasingly become a part of the organization’s learning strategy.
I see an increase in gamification for serious learning to continue and extend to the programs that have traditionally not used it or used it rather sparingly (for instance compliance and application simulation-based training).
Although learning from others and with others is intrinsic to human beings, we have seen a recognition for using social learning as an important part of corporate training only in last few years.
With options for platforms or portals, I see an increase in usage of social learning to foster a spirit of collaborative learning in organizations.
The total number of app downloads across the world in 2017 was a staggering 197 billion. Given the fact, that we use apps several times during our day, its usage for learning is a logical extension.
I see an increase in the usage of mobile apps for learning, and this will become a significant part of corporate training in 2018. They, too, will leverage on microlearning (including learning paths) as well as on gamification. The flexibility of personalization and connect with learners through notifications (on updates) continues to establish their value.
I don’t even need to highlight the role of videos in learning. If you were to poll the learners, this would definitely be in their top 3 formats for learning. The only challenge with classic video-based learning is the passivity and most of us forget what we learned after 60 seconds.
In 2018, I see more investment in videos that offer interactivities (similar to traditional eLearning), interim knowledge checks, branching based on the choices learners make as well as the end of program assessments.
Furthermore, you will see an integration of videos from YouTube to create a specific learning path (similar to topics in other online courses) and track learners’ progress and performance.
In 2017 eLearning Trends and Predictions, I had highlighted how LMS/LCMS platforms need to align to the way the learners want to learn. I see the trend continuing in 2018, and a shift from corporate LMS platforms that “push” training programs to personalized learning paths that learners can “pull”. Flexibility to learn offline and sync back with the LMS once you are online are no more desirable but essential features.
The next year will see further enhancements in ease of development (rapid and fully responsive designs) to keep pace with microlearning needs as well as flexibility to incorporate trending learning strategies and high impact formats.
Organizations are realizing that the budget spent on only formal and structured training (that is only one of the many ways we learn) is not enough. Providing learners with more channels to learn from, having access to precise information they need when they have a challenge and foster collaborative learning are some key aspects that will see increased focus in 2018.
The usage of Performance Support Tools (PSTs) needs to be an integral part of the training to provide just-in-time learning aids to the learners and I see this trend certainly picking up momentum in 2018.
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Learning portals were initially conceptualized for certain key programs that needed a different degree of engagement from the learners (in contrast to traditional LMS platforms). Today, they can be designed as stand-alone platforms or co-exist with the LMS.
They are learner-centric and provide a higher degree of control to the learners. The reason for their popularity is a niche and a definitive need they are often designed for. They typically feature a learning path (featuring resources in different formats) and some collaboration features (extending to curation). Most of them offer a highly personalized path to the learners. More significantly, they capture learner analytics at levels that a traditional LMS cannot or does not capture.
In 2018, I see an increased adoption of learning portals as many of the legacy LMS platforms do not provide this capability. It would be interesting to see with similar features being available in next-gen LMSs, how learning portals do evolve in 2019.
“One size does not fit all” and learning is no exception. Personalized learning will see an increase in 2018.
Using assessments (pre-test) or surveys (to determine learner’s interest and their assessment of proficiency) will help organizations create personalized learning paths for the learners. Interim check-points (with formative feedback) can be used to redirect learners to other aspects of the training that may not have been the recommended path but which would be useful. Looking at the way learners engage with various assets can lead to other, new recommendations to be made.
I believe this is one trend that is worth a closer look in 2018.
Thanks to the internet, today we have tremendous knowledge at our fingertips. However, sifting through various options to determine relevancy is often a time-consuming process. This is precisely where content curation fits in. The curator (an expert) sifts through the data and creates a learning path that meets defined objectives.
Learners are provided with learning paths, and they have the flexibility to re-configure them if required. They can also share and recommend assets from the portal. The process can be made more inclusive by having learners contribute and enrich the repository.
I believe that 2018 will certainly see an increase in content curation solutions.
Do I see a world where AI can replace the tasks L&D teams do in terms of defining what courses learners should take and what additional resources they have access to? Not quite!
However, using cues from learning analytics (notably, xAPI) AI can add tremendous value in recommending assets that can help the learners reach the desired goal (skill enhancement or behavioral change).
As we begin understanding learner motivation, behavior and the dynamics in the current learning path (how they navigate, what they browse, where they spend time, and so on), we can potentially use AI to direct them to areas they may not have explored.
It would be interesting to see which of the current LMS providers turns out to be the first mover in offering this capability in 2018.
Without any doubt, AR/VR provides one of the most immersive learning experiences. Although this has seen a considerable traction in 2017 and shows promise in 2018, it does come with a hefty price tag (and longer lead time to develop).
With early adoption in training intended for hazardous workspaces (Health and Safety training) or complex simulations, we are already seeing the beginning of usage of mobile apps that embed AR features.
Now, it is anticipated that this will eventually substitute scenarios including branching scenarios as well as video-based learning for behavioral change. This will open doors to its application in soft skills and to a wider application for corporate training.
Big Data refers to voluminous data that is aggregated from various sources (typically, LMS, LCMS, learning portals, and surveys/polling or assessments in the context of eLearning). Given its large volume, complexity and the fact that it is dynamic, there is no tool that can manage and analyze it.
Big Data reporting and analytics encompass the approaches through which this data can be presented in formats that are relevant for analysis, decision making, and action. When processed right, this can give us tremendous insights on how learners learn, the impact of training on skills or behavioral change and the impact on business. It can then help in the determination of ROI on training spend.
I see an increase in Big Data reporting and analytics in 2018 leading to the further optimization of the training delivery.
This analysis can be used to understand the learner’s behavior, and the way they want to learn, the learning paths that are chosen by the learners and update the existing training delivery. These cues can be further used to create personalized and more effective learning paths that enable learners to learn, practice, obtain feedback and remediation, and so on.
Although learner analytics is an integral part of the overall Big Data that is being collated through multiple, I am highlighting this as a separate aspect. In 2017, we have seen an increased focus on understanding the learners’ behavior and what can be done to improve the motivation, engagement, and application of on-the-job learning.
Usage of Tin Can API can give a very detailed view of how learners are interacting with the eLearning courses and validate it against the assumptions and revise the learning designs/learning paths, if necessary. I see this trend seeing further traction in 2018 resulting in learning designs that appeal to learners and create the required value that businesses seek.
Over the next 2-3 years, I see an extensive use of AI (Artificial Intelligence) in using this analytics and creating recommended and highly personalized cues for the learners.
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I hope you find these pointers as part of my eLearning Trends and Predictions for 2018 useful and I also wish you are now able to use them in your organization. If you have any queries, do contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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“The sheer magnitude of the domain and the impact it creates on the learning landscape is impetus enough to innovate and accelerate every day.”
My role at EI Design requires me to don multifaceted capabilities, starting from consulting with clients on Instructional Design requirements, strategizing learning approaches and handling presales opportunities as a Solution Architect, managing a domain with diverse skillsets, to innovating and exploring new learning design trends.
Through my journey at EI Design, I have learned to appreciate the value of Learning Innovation, Customer Relationship Management, and the power of Instructional Design in ensuring the required Behavioral Change mandates per end stakeholders. The sheer magnitude of the domain and the impact it creates on the learning landscape is impetus enough to innovate and accelerate every day.
I like to start early and plan my Urgent-Important matrix to begin. The whole day is an artful juggle between a Domain Head and a Solution Architect, with periodic connects with teams and customers. A perfect wrap-up would entail ticking off items in the matrix with tangible outcomes or action plans. Innovation and thought leadership are a constant underlying message in everything I do.
Traveling, social gatherings, music sessions, and uninhibited discussions help rejuvenate and replenish my energy to keep going the extra miles!
The Possibilities are endless if you have the will and determination to seek more, learn more, and achieve more.
I never knew my journey at EI design would be so rewarding and fulfilling. I have never felt the curiosity and enthusiasm drop over the time I’ve spent at EI Design, mainly due to the mazing work culture that we support. My seniors at EI design have always provided me the support and guidance I needed to grow as a professional. Not only have I been surrounded by brilliant professionals – people that I can look up to and take inspiration from – but there have been so many opportunities for me to develop and progress.
I work with EI Design as a Technology Manager and provide innovative technology solutions for our projects. I am also part of the Innovation and Solution Architecting Team, where we explore new tools and technologies in the market and come up with strategies to integrate them into our projects. As part of the Solution Architecting Team, I am constantly involved in providing futuristic solutions to clients. We, at EI Design, believe in pushing the boundaries of learning by making it creative and fun.
I start my day with early morning workouts to make sure that I am physically active and carry the same energy throughout the day. Most of my days begin with meetings to ensure that we are on track with ongoing projects. I detail the information provided in these meeting to concerned team members and keep project deliverables on track.
I admire punctuality and respect my time at work. I ensure that my tasks are done on time, every time, so that other dependencies associated to me do not get affected. This helps me to maintain my work-life balance.
“Stepping out of your comfort zone and trying new things is the best way to grow”.
As the Project Lead at EI Design, my role involves supporting my team in delivering quality products and managing iterations. I am also responsible for coordinating multiple projects with clients across the globe. I am perpetually involved in supervising and guiding my team through the numerous tasks that come our way. It is my duty to ensure smooth functioning of daily processes and drive my team to deliver quality, while maintaining consistency.
My day at EI Design begins with a stand-up meeting where I assess my team’s workload, create a list of deliverables, and distribute tasks to team members accordingly.
It is my top priority to make sure that the team’s dependencies are taken care of and that there are no obstacles in project deliverables throughout the day.
Even so, there are times when I too would not be able to resolve an issue. But the speed and enthusiasm with which my team responds to escalations is a quality that I admire.
We normally get into discussions to check the difficulties faced by each member and find solutions to avoid them in future.
If you want to grow you must be ready to learn from anyone, anywhere, anytime.
I joined EI Design as a Quality Analyst and worked my way up to become an Associate Project Manager. I now help my team plan their daily tasks and provide the necessary guidance to meet project deadlines accordingly.
My role at EI Design involves the delivery of quality products to all our clients and address their concerns and queries through multiple stages of the project life cycle.
A majority of my work deals with managing various project requirements from numerous clients from across the globe. A regular day for me is getting involved in various meetings with team members, and attending client calls. I always ensure that I have a positive approach toward the projects that I handle. The environment around me is reciprocative and the support helps me overcome any obstacles within the project. Even so, it is important that I take crucial decisions at critical moments and ease the pressure off my team and maintain a smooth process flow. Apart from this, we normally take breaks to refresh ourselves and find ways to keep each other motivated.
Every time you come across a challenge you need to face it than avoid it. It will help you grow professionally as well as personally.
I work as a Senior Visual Designer at EI Design where I develop the visual design for client projects. My focus is to provide end products as per the client’s design and requirement. This puts me in a position where I need to understand core client requirements. I achieve this by communicating efficiently across the different domains that are involved in the project. As a Visual Designer, my focus is to develop eye-catching products that not only capture the imagination of end-users but also enhance their learning capabilities through our innovative technologies.
I begin my day by looking at the immediate tasks and deliverables at hand. My supervising manager overlooks the tasks for the day and assigns them according to individual competencies. I go through emails and prioritize my tasks accordingly. It helps me plan and execute my activities way ahead of delivery deadlines.
We can always be the best in anything we do, provided we are ready to work hard for it.
As a Senior Business Development Manager at EI Design, my main role is business mining, building new opportunities for our business.
I drive revenue for the business and build relationships with clients to expand our business. I help clients solve monotonous training challenges through engaging approaches and ensure smooth transaction throughout the project lifecycle. I am responsible for generating the customer satisfaction survey for EI Design, where I gather feedback from end-users and convey it to the client. I mentor new employees that join the business development domain and ensure that they are aligned to the business needs along with process training.
During my close to 2 years tenure at EI Design, I have helped achieve the committed revenue for the business and retained various clients. With the constant support of my team, I continue to ensure that our clients’ journey through the entire project lifecycle is hassle-free.
Reaching out to clients and presenting the best eLearning solutions is the core of my everyday life at EI Design. I ensure that all customer satisfaction surveys are delivered to clients while also continuing to work on building new business for EI Design. On a monotonous day at office, I ensure to build energy within the team and keep them motivated.
Work till you need no introduction.
I work with the Quality Assurance Team at EI Design, co-ordinating with multiple domains (ID, VA, Tech, and VD) to deliver exceptional product experiences for learners. It is my duty to ensure that the developers are equipped with accurate information in order to fix/uplift the product experience. I also bridge the gap between developers/testers and the client to provide clarity on the feedback received from client. In conclusion, I can say that I drive the quality of work generated across domains and monitor the performance of domains, teams, and individuals using Quality Measurement Analysis reports.
My day begins with organizing the activities for the day, checking emails for client responses, and allocating task to my team, depending on the ongoing projects on floor and the deliverables planned. Apart from this, on a regular day, I would receive client calls, conduct meetings, and communicate project requirements with my team and other domains that require my help. At the end of the day, I conduct status checks across all ongoing projects reviewed on the day and assess their progress. This helps me to ensure a high standard in the quality of work generated across all the products at EI Design.
Don’t Be the Smartest One in the Room
“Oftentimes, leaders feel that they need to be the “smartest guy or gal” in the room, and that couldn’t be further from the truth. Good leaders are the smartest one in the room, great leaders surround themselves with smarter people that will challenge ideas, bring new perspectives to the table and drive innovation.”
– – Jacob Hanson, PR with Panache!
“A good workplace tests your ability to be the best, and EI Design has definitely influenced me in that endeavor.”
As a part of the Design Strategy Team, I communicate with internal and external stakeholders on the strategy for design and the visual experience aspects. I also contribute to presales stages in creating design strategies and mock-ups that make our products stand out among the rest.
I constantly contribute to Learning and Development at the organizational level (specific trainings on design trends, best practices, knowledge sharing, and so on.) In addition, I guide and ensure that designers follow design briefs, guidelines, and prototypes in various stages of product development.
I receive my work at the beginning of the week and so I begin my day reviewing the previous week’s progress and then move on to the tasks allotted to me for the next week. On other days, I just go about my tasks according to the priorities assigned to them.
Apart from this, I coordinate with the Visual Design Team to assist with issues such as design variance, alterations, and clarifications. Most of my day is either spent in brainstorming fresh ideas for new projects or helping other domains carry out the functional aspects of our design strategies.
Always stay committed to work no matter what and aim for the stars.