Why include online learning in your L&D strategy

Friday 18 September 2015

There is little doubt that online learning is the way of the future. Like many recent technological advances, ideas that currently seem revolutionary are likely to be viewed as commonplace in the very near future. Just imagine a world without the iPhone, tablets, Twitter, video on demand and LinkedIn – and you only have to go back 15 years for a time when none of these innovations were available.

So, for many organisations it must be seen as strategic imperative to embrace the latest technology in their L&D functions, to understand the benefits of blended learning solutions, and to use the best mix of classroom training, on-going coaching and online learning. The precise mix will depend on the nature of your company, your customers and your training requirements. Businesses should be careful not to be left behind - one piece of recent research shows that highly advanced companies are already delivering up to 18% of all their training via mobile devices.

So why should your business make use of online learning?

1. Make better use of your L&D budget
It goes without saying that CEOs want to be sure that their L&D budget is delivering value for money and will monitor KPIS such as number of people trained, increased sales and improvements in customer satisfaction. Online learning can certainly deliver - in some businesses, virtual learning has helped train at least double the number of people  as traditional methods for the same budget.

2. Provide consistent training and development across widely dispersed teams
Customers expect the same quality of service from a multinational company – whether they are in London or Los Angeles, Bangalore or Sydney. Incorporating learning online, can help international firms train and develop their people using the same methods and vocabulary, helping provide a consistent customer experience wherever they are in the world.

3. Speed up the effectiveness of your new recruits
Research has shown that there is a marked difference between sales reps that have received a good on-boarding programme against those who did not. In this study, it took new sales reps 251 days to achieve the same revenue as existing team members when they received a comprehensive induction versus 381 days for those new recruits who did not. 

Our experience shows that new recruits are often overwhelmed with the information that they are given during their induction process. This is where an mlearning guided curriculum solution can come into it own. By using personalised mlearning, information can be delivered to your new people at their own pace, in bite-sized chunks at the most appropriate time in their development.

4. Help develop the leadership skills of your managers
Equipping your managers with good coaching skills can have an important impact on results. Apps can support coaching programmes providing appropriate information, for each stage of the programme, which learners can access a their own pace. Apps can also facilitate an engaging two-way dialogue between the learner and their manager, though email or FaceTime, which can continue long after the coaching programme has finished. It also enables your L&D Teams to track the progression of learners and how managers are supporting them.

5. Personalised learning embedded into the daily routine of your people
Micro learning modules using mobile technology allows your people to complete bite-sized chunks of learning as part of their daily routine. Learning can be more personalised to the individual needs of each learner rather than a one fit for all solution.

Blended learning solutions are the future
Whilst there will always be a role for classroom training, incorporating online learning into the mix makes good business sense. Elearning can drive down L&D costs, provide consistent training and allows personalised learning in bite-sized chunks.

So what is holding you back?
Expertise seems to be a key blockage in businesses developing their online learning programmes  - one study highlighted that 62% of firms felt that their L&D department lacked the skills to implement and manage elearning in-house. This is where the experience of an external provider can be invaluable, to help your internal teams gain the required knowledge and to kick start integrating more sophisticated online learning solutions into your L&D programmes.

At Prosell, we have developed a series of customised Apps to support client training and coaching programmes. If you would like to talk about developing appropriate blended learning solutions, using the latest online and mobile learning solutions for your business, do get in touch. We would love to hear from you.



This post was written by

Mark BW McDermott

Account Director