Industry terms come and go. New terms crop up, while other terms disappear. Sometimes terms remain, but their meaning changes over time. The online training industry is no exception, and if you don’t use the “right” or “latest” term, others may not see you as an industry expert.
Learning is important for human growth and development, and training is certainly an integral part of workplace learning. But a constant challenge for workplace learning professionals is creating training programs that captivate the learner audience and cause learners to sit up, take notice and, well, learn.
A recent employee survey by Software Advice, a site that researches learning management systems, reveals thought-provoking data on how corporate learning programs can drive employee engagement. It’s logical that studies of employee engagement involve understanding training program satisfaction. Investment in employee training is viewed positively by employees and prospective employees alike, as indicated in lists of “the best companies to work for”, because it is viewed as an investment in people.
Online training is typically made for mass consumption—one reason why it’s so cost effective compared to classroom training. It is typically not meant for private tutoring or coaching. However, if every learner feels that the training is personalized for him or her, you’ve created a meaningful connection and made the learning session feel individualized.
As companies build a training department, there are many questions that come up. What training role should we hire first? Should we start with live training or online training? What learning technology should we choose? How much should we invest in the overall training function? How much of the investment should be spent on the different functions within the training department?
Online training is growing in popularity for a variety of reasons. First, as organizations become more dispersed, classroom training becomes a larger challenge as employees work in offices (and at home) all over the world. Second, online training tools have become so easy to use that the effort it takes to produce online training has dropped dramatically.
The online training industry is flooded with articles and blog posts about future trends that focus on far fetched fantasies attainable only to those with discretionary budgets and/or niche needs. These trends generally include topics like gamification, the xAPI, and wearables to name a few. But for most of us, these are not practical trends we will implement any time soon.
Mindflash has recently started supporting SCORM content from Articulate Storyline and Adobe Captivate. SCORM is an often-requested feature, but as many of you know, getting it to work reliably on all players and devices is a challenge. With this information, we researched what the most popular SCORM creation tools were on the market. It became clear after talking to customers, and prospects that Articulate’s Storyline and Adobe’s Captivate products were the most popular creation tools. Both tools allow for interactive slides, branching scenarios, screen recording, and various questions types, making them some of the most versatile tools available. Mindflash then set off to figure out how we could support these standalone content packages alongside our other content options like PowerPoint, video and PDFs.
Jack Phillips is founder and CEO of the ROI Institute, Inc., a research, benchmarking and consulting organization. Phillips developed the ROI Methodology™, a critical tool he has used for measuring and evaluating programs such as training, human resources, technology and quality programs and initiatives. Follow Jack on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or YouTube.
One of the biggest problems with social learning is that it is an informal type of learning and organizations can’t help but to try to formalize it in any way possible. It is understandable because a free-for-all in any function is hardly an effective way to run a business. While a free-for-all learning strategy might not be the most effective way to run a training department, Stephanie Ivec argues for keeping informal learning, informal, "Trying to turn informal learning into formal learning diminishes [its] unique benefits" writes Ivec.