A close look at training and mobile technology

Article

A close look at training and mobile technology

Article
A close look at training and mobile technology

An HR study by Sierra-Cedar in 2015* uncovered a growing interest in HR departments for mobile applications: employees have indeed become increasingly mobile-savvy and able to work while on the go. Mobile devices are slowly becoming the main point of contact that connects employees and their company. More than any other identified key points, training is where these changes must be anticipated first. HR departments should even position themselves to be at the forefront of its adoption.

But, where to start? Between innovative applications with new learning approaches or cross-service applications promising to cover all HR needs, what strategy should be adopted? Where should companies invest?

All-in-One applications – a reassuring investment but a slow transition

Even though the idea of a cross-service application is attractive, rarely does it actually provide effective solutions to HR needs in all its functions. The innovative nature of the application is diluted when trying to cover too many functions. As a result, choosing the right app is essential to avoid being weighed down by an inflexible application, incapable of evolving quickly. If any sector requires agility it is this one. The value of applications comes from their ability to continuously evolve.

Saying yes to innovation without sacrificing learner engagement  

On the other side of the spectrum, a solution entirely based on educational innovations is also a risky bet. It is one thing to win over a minority group of learners who are already willing to test new mobile applications. The challenge lies in making this new approach acceptable to a wider majority who expect familiar formats and content on their mobile devices, instead of something new.

This is why there is a higher risk in choosing a “trendy” application that does not take into account user productivity and efficiency. Difficulties are often uncovered after the application’s launch phase, when it is too late to address usage issues.

Scalability – the true power of mobile technology

After the discovery phase, the application’s scalability becomes the next essential question, i.e. How to deploy the application on a large scale? The assumption is that the application would need to be conceptualized for large deployment from the beginning in order to include all the different types of content and mobile devices.

Pitfalls of this approach:

  • Issues in integrating legacy training libraries (Third party or Publisher libraries)
  • Multiple languages not included in the application’s conception
  • SCORM content not managed properly by the application
  • Content created by company experts not included in application (e.g. using authoring tool)
  • Mobile app statistics not cross-analyzed with statistics from the training platform
  • Daily constraints not taken into account by the application
  • Content not managed offline
  • The mobile app provider is unable to adjust the app to cover possible new needs within a reasonable time period due to cost, priority, and resources.

Important questions for training departments:

  • How to reconcile the mobile app with the training platform?
  • How to ensure continuity throughout the training?
  • How to consolidate mobile app data using indicators already adopted by the learning platform?
  • How to manage mobile app content compatibility?
  • Who can help manage mobile app content compatibility – The publisher or the content provider?
  • After the launch, should two parallel systems be maintained?

Putting the learning experience to the content test

Creating a functional application is only the beginning. Participants must have a successful learning experience through a widely diverse selection of content in the format best adapted to their needs. For example:

  • Key Points summary in PDF format – 2 minutes
  • Short video summary of content – Memorable storytelling format
  • Action questions – Fundamental questions that help translate concepts into actions
  • Brief training videos for office software and applications

Personalized content, as well as third party content libraries, can also be integrated and easily viewed from the application.

CrossKnowledge’s flexible application and adapted content progressively eliminates potential frictions to the learning process, which provides the best multiple-format content compatibility on the market. No matter the type of access, continuous training is the priority.

Mobility is about Access not Tech

Access through mobile devices is no longer the small ‘gadget’ solution it was 5 years ago. Current strategies must have a structured, rigorous approach to mobile solutions. Companies can do this by entrusting the functional strength of a training system to proven specialists like CrossKnowledge. With proper assistance during every step of the process, companies can integrate all types of compatible content.

By shifting the strategy towards training through diverse devices, companies are not rendering their current investments obsolete. Mobile technology instead magnifies the impact of training while still following the global training strategy. Mobile access should actually be viewed as a logical extension of learning investments already in place.

Access is about ensuring continuity, remaining responsive to learning needs, and adapting to usage behaviors. CrossKnowledge’s mobile solution provides this access in order to guarantee improved productivity, solid learner engagement, and the most effective training overall.img5

*2015–2016 Sierra Cedar HRSystems Survey. The overall growth for Mobile within organizations is projected at over 60% for the Administrative, Workforce Management, and Talent Applications, and 160% growth for BI/Workforce Analytics.

 

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