The past few years placed an emphasis on eLearning. More businesses are using online training to close skill gaps and cope with limitations caused by the pandemic. Increased demand has led to a lot of innovation and expansion in the eLearning niche.
Anyone with employees to train should be paying attention to those industry developments. While you may not need to implement everything developers come up with, there could be new or improved tools that will make your training program more effective and efficient.
eLearning brings many benefits. One of the biggest draws is how much time and resources it can save an organization. Workers no longer have to travel to off-site seminars and classes. Instead, they can attend from anywhere with an internet connection. Web-based learning can be done at their own pace, allowing your team to work around hectic schedules.
The bottom line is that if you haven’t been paying attention to eLearning, your employee training program is behind. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, online learning became a necessity rather than a luxury. Better tools and infrastructure mean that it’s more useful now than ever before.
There’s a lot to look forward to in 2022. Which eLearning trends should you be watching this year?
Artificial Intelligence Continues to Grow
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in employee training has continued to grow. AI can save time and make courses more effective.
Through AI, trainers can reduce the amount of time spent on time-consuming back-end tasks like updating records, enrollment, and more. AI can also adapt content to the needs and interests of learners.
Many LMS platforms offer recommendations that encourage employees to discover and sign up for new courses. Systems that use AI can improve suggestions by learning what the individual worker wants and needs out of training.
Learning and Development Are a Must-Have
The role of learning and development (L&D) has shifted in recent years. According to a LinkedIn Learning 2021 Workplace Learning Report, 64% of L&D specialists agree that this part of business has gone from “good to have” to a “need to have” status.
In 2022, L&D should be more closely attuned to business goals and objectives. Approximately 69% of companies have expanded their employee development offerings.
Upskilling your team is important. It allows you to avoid skill gaps and fill roles internally. Today’s younger talent want to work for organizations that help them build their careers. Around 94% of employees said that they would remain with their current employer if the company invested in their careers.
Mobile Learning Takes the Spotlight
Mobile learning isn’t an afterthought anymore. With so many employees using smartphones, being able to train on smaller devices is a must.
Organizations that are ahead of the curve have already taken the mobile-first approach in their training programs. That means that content and interfaces were built for the mobile user first.
Since phones have smaller screens, they tend to have limitations that a computer may not. Taking the mobile first approach ensures that the experience is consistent across all devices.
Mobile learning gives users a way to train from anywhere, even if a computer is not available. Many LMSs now support mobile. Some offer native Apple and Android apps that include offline modes. Learners can complete courses without an internet connection and their phone will automatically sync up with the LMS once they can reconnect.
In 2022, more people are working from home or while away from the office. Having a strong mobile component in your training program should be looked at as a requirement rather than an extra.
Immersive Technology Changes Training
Ed tech has produced many impressive resources that completely change how employees learn. One of the biggest developments falls into immersive technology. This category includes virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR).
VR can take learners and place them in a virtual world that they can interact with and move through. Sight and sound are used to create a realistic version of a worksite or situation. The learner can prove their ability by completing a task in VR without putting resources or other people at risk.
AR takes a similar approach but instead augments the real world. Text, graphics, charts, and more can be overlayed to display information, hints, or instructions.
The potential of both VR and AR is nearly limitless. Any place, time, or event can be created in VR. AR gives us a unique perspective of the world, one that provides more insight to help learners improve their skill sets.
Employee Training is Social Now
Human beings are social creatures by nature. This applies when it comes to learning. Some people need more interaction when training while others would rather do it alone.
Social eLearning gives everyone what they need. These features are available in most LMS platforms and usually include live chat, forums, social media integration, file sharing, and virtual whiteboards. They facilitate interaction among learners and trainers to keep communication open.
Resources like these give employees a place to consult when they need guidance. They can ask questions or share ideas with their peers. Social features increase engagement and interaction.
According to a Bloomfire report, 87% of employees identify social knowledge sharing as a necessity. Only 37% felt the same way about formal employee training.
Combining self-guided or solo learning tools with social resources will ensure that your training program covers the needs of all trainees.
Interactive Content Engages Learners
Interactive content is a big player in eLearning in 2022. This approach presents subjects along with material that requires learner participation. Instead of just reading, listening, or watching content, the learner must also interact.
This can be done in many ways. Some authoring tools add quizzes or text that overlay on top of videos or other materials. It can also be used to spark conversation in training classes with interactive questions.
Employee engagement is essential to the success of a business. Workers who are engaged tend to have higher job satisfaction rates and are less likely to leave. Many factors apply here, but one of the biggest is career development.
Your training program needs to be engaging to get the best outcomes and to keep your employees happy.
Microlearning is Expanding
Microlearning takes a topic or concept and presents it in an easy-to-digest module. These bite-sized portions of eLearning content are effective and flexible. The right LMS will allow users to produce microlearning content and combine each segment however they want. String related topics together in sequence or use one to supplement an existing course.
- Easy to deploy
- Extremely versatile
- Increases knowledge retention
- Improves data tracking
Organizations can pinpoint which content is working and which may need an overhaul using microlearning. The smaller segments break the material down for better analytics.
Research indicates that microlearning increases employee focus and retention by as much as 80%. It also increases engagement from 15% to around 90%. Most trainers prefer it to day-long seminars because it is a more enjoyable experience for learners.
If you don’t use microlearning right now, it’s time to look into it. Many LMS platforms support this format.
Every organization needs a good learning management system in 2022. Find yours by visiting LMS.org to discover today’s best eLearning platforms.