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The world of employee training has changed dramatically over the last few years. This is mainly due to the fast-paced evolution of up and coming technologies, but also due to a shift in educational mentalities amongst trainers, teachers, and instructional designers. As a species, we are beginning to understand that education comes first and that the personal and professional evolution of our employees is beneficial to the organization as a whole.
Today's employee learners can have virtually unlimited access to course content, information, and guidance. We can access information whenever we need it and through whatever device we prefer, regardless of where we are. Enter tablets and smartphones!
These pocket-size super-computers have revolutionized the way we interact with content and information. We can pull up any bit of information when we need it, fix our issue, and then go about our usual workday. Mobile learning continues to expand and shape our world. Thus, it is important that any organization looking to make its mark get on board with using smartphones and tablets in employee training.
Mobile Learning, or mLearning, has made education super-accessible. All you really need is a smart-phone and an internet connection and you're set to discover almost anything you can possibly be thinking of. mLearning is so complex that there are many ways to get information, aside from your usual browser search. It includes various learning contexts and combines social and content interactions to provide a full educational experience.
You can learn through 'distance education', from peer-to-peer or peer-to-trainer interactions, by teaching others through serious games, augmented reality apps, microlearning modules, and more. Mobile Learning has blurred the line between education and entertainment, so in a sense, you can have your cake and eat it too. A mobile training approach can and should be fun, entertaining, and it should provide the right amount of clear and concise information.
Using mobile devices in training and development can benefit your company in multiple ways. A mobile training approach to continuing education, improving skills, and increasing employee job performance, productivity, and satisfaction will:
Provide learner-centric and personalized-learning path self-education opportunities for your employees. This gives them the freedom of learning at their own pace, using their preferred device, and in their own time.
Contribute to a higher rate of engagement because of the freedom to create their own learning experience and because you can combine fun and entertainment into an educational app.
Activate learning-by-doing and learning-through-play mentalities which in turn increase the probability of employees applying the newly acquired knowledge to their day to day job tasks.
Demonstrate higher success and course fulfillment rates.
Strongly encourages social and team-based work which leads to a more homogenous learning and development work culture.
Serve both formal and informal, hard and soft-skill development.
As with any new endeavor, it is important for you to create a plan before starting the process of incorporating mobile learning into your company's workplace culture. Here are the essential steps to think about when developing your eLearning strategy:
We've mentioned this before, and we'll mention it again: knowing your staff, their level of tech-savviness, development wishes, and job advancement expectations is very important. Once you collect this information it will be easier to formulate a mobile learning strategy that will fit your business' needs and goals while keeping workplace satisfaction high.
Since most people own a smartphone or tablet, you can think about adding personal devices into the mix. This is precisely what Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) means. Your staff can download or access the course content, Learning Management System (LMS), or online eLearning platform through their personal devices.
Choosing the right Learning Management System is your next step. The right platform will empower your employee learners, engage them, and have them coming back for more. Make sure your application can be accessed from various handheld devices so that the content can be accessed from most smartphones and tablets.
The way employee learners interact with your learning platform can dictate the level of success your employee training course will have. The more intuitive and simple your UI and UX are, the better. You might also want to do a training module to teach employees how to navigate the LMS of your choice.
The content you provide in your mobile learning courses needs to relate emotionally and professionally to your audience. This means that you'll want to offer a flexible learning experience based on each employee's learning needs and goals. The less relatable, the less they will be engaged with the course. So, make sure the content is truly helpful to learners.
Data security is more important than ever, especially if you choose to go with a BYOD approach. Some training is advised to make sure your employees are careful about sharing their personal and/or company data.
You can use smartphones and tablets in training/learning for:
Regardless of the LMS, delivery method and type of UI/UX you choose for your mobile learning courses, using tablets and smartphones in corporate learning is always a good idea.