Inspire employees to value corporate learning and impact growth.
No one has time to be a corporate learning cheerleader, so put away the pom-poms and use this post to learn tips that can motivate and influence your employees to use the organization’s corporate learning resources.
Our account management team did some reconnaissance work for you to find out how to increase the use of corporate learning resources within your ranks. Through our interactions with customers, we have identified leading tactics that yield high adoption and performance results for self-directed learning.
Now, we’re sharing these best practices with you.
Here are five ways to increase corporate learning resource adoption and usage, all wrapped it up in a pretty little bow. Just in time for your 2015 learning and development strategy planning.
1. Communicate learning and growth goals.
Communicate your expectations and goals. Let your team know why the company is investing in these tools. If the team knows why these goals are being set, communicating the how-to’s becomes easier to implement.
Adoption benchmarks are also important when on-boarding a new learning resource. Ask your vendor for benchmarks that reflect success and align your goals accordingly.
“See what your learning vendor can provide, in terms of getting the word out to your team,” advises Safari Account Manager, Dan Alexander. “Ask: What will help lead them to use learning tools in new and/or more expansive ways? User-focused engagement demos and lunch-and-learns work well.”
Top performing accounts communicate often, through multiple communication channels. Try layering the message within company newsletters, emails and break room communication boards. Others create cross-departmental competitions.
Find out which departments are using training resources more. Are you incentivizing the leading teams? There are a variety of ways to communicate the availability of corporate learning resources. Enlist your communications and marketing teams, and see what suggestions they may have for your initiatives.
2. Encourage mobile learning.
Welcome to the post-PC era! Millions of happy workers operate daily within BYOD, flat-world, remote, cross-timezone, cross-collaborative, or flexible work environments.
Even further, more than half of all global IP traffic will originate with non-PC devices three years from now. Traffic from wireless and mobile devices will exceed traffic from wired devices by 2018.
Mobile means accessibility. When your learning resource platform provides a seamless user experience across all devices, it opens floodgates for usage and adoption of learning habits. Mobile media usage peaks between 5 pm -11 pm. Give your workforce something intellectual to browse on their devices during off-hours.
“Your team is already on their smartphones, so make sure they know about mobile accessibility,” says Safari Account Manager Alexander. “This will expedite knowledge sharing, and in turn increase productivity.”
3. Provide a variety of content.
You don’t have to become a teacher to improve the frequency of using corporate learning resources. Rather, see yourself as an “architect of continuous development,” as described by Association for Talent Development bloggers. Create an environment and culture that promotes and communicates what’s available to your lifelong learners.
“We know (because we have the data to back it up) that very few people only watch video courses or only read books or only watch conference sessions.” – noted Safari’s CEO Andrew Savikas in a recent post.
Communicate what kind of content is available to your learners, often. Start by asking your learning resource vendor what they are doing to make content more accessible. Do they have a blog or newsletter that features content that you can share with your team? Does the vendor curate lists based on staff and editorial picks? What tools are available to you to help communicate what content is available to your team. What paths to content are they providing you with?
“If you want to get use out of learning tools, you have to communicate and ensure they [your employees] are fully aware of what’s available: mobile apps, video training, conference videos, tutorials, et cetera,” says Safari Account Manager Matt Dennett. “Remind your team what’s available to them with consistency. Communicate often, and help them form a new positive habit.”
As an example, one Safari business customer pulls the usage data from the team’s popularly viewed content and shares the top 10 titles viewed through the company’s internal communication channels.
It will behoove you to recruit and befriend your communications or marketing teams to implement successful distribution of information regarding your learning tools. Marketing and/or communications will have creative ideas and resources to share and communicate your messaging along the way.
Reaching out and teaming up with other departments will also help nurture a culture that will (with time and dedication), turn into a self-directed learning environment.
4. Make it social, promote word of mouth!
Today, 85 percent of companies are experimenting with social learning tools and techniques. Collaborative networked learning (CNL) and computer supported collaborative learning (CSCL) create new environments for humans to do what we’ve been doing since ancient times – sharing knowledge.
The proof is in the data pudding. According to our research, an individual Safari member is 81 times more likely to stick with Safari after annotating and sharing content.
“What does that tell us?” asks Safari Program Manager, Scott Cipriano in his 2014 Books in Browsers presentation. “You [learners] want more collaborative features.”
We’ve discovered the benefit to learning increases in relation to the user’s participation and collaboration. Knowing this, we can continue to build Safari features on the notion that technology must be collaborative to maximize the ROI for the learner. It’s a natural choice.
Promoting collaboration and sharing of content will increase the value of your learner’s overall experience and encourage user engagement. Here at Safari, we have a chatroom dedicated to reading recommendations, and share our favorite quotes and highlights.
The chatroom takes on a life of its own, growing organically. It’s a place we pull valuable information from peers, and begin to find commonalities, beyond the boundaries of job roles.
High-performing Safari accounts utilize a variety of the following social tactics:
- Find your super-users and enlist their help with word-of-mouth
- Develop a space and time for workplace book clubs
- Host a monthly ‘show-and-tell’ or ‘what have you learned’ event that pulls highlights from what your team found or learned
- Show teams how they can share information with one another to promote collaboration
- Host a virtual discussion board on a specific topic or subject matter
- Create a topic of the month, week or day to emphasize
5. Customize learning to increase adoption rates!
Through our discovery, we found that companies that are successful in generating interest and use of internal corporate learning resources ensure that vendor tools promote self-paced learning.
“Not everyone has time, or uses information found in learning tools at the same rate,“ says Alexander. “One of my clients referenced having the browser tab open with Safari just to hop in-and-out in minute intervals as needed throughout the day.”
Knowledge empowers people. Let your workforce know that the organization is providing them with access to learning tools that may be free to them as part of their perks and benefits, and relevant to their specific job functions.
Additionally, learning tools that facilitate user-based functionalities and resources that add-value to the individual’s overall experience, will help provide each employee with a unique learning experience.
It’s evident, in my opinion, that the emerging standardization of behavioral and user-focused technologies is moving our collective mindset toward predetermined expectations for recommendation-based technology – especially with workplace learning solutions.
Your learning tools need to provide learners with not just a bunch of information, but also an experience that is tailored to them. Add more personalization to the learning experience by helping your learners develop personal goals that align with the overall growth strategies of the company. Communicate your organization’s goals for growth, so that self-directed learners understand where to align their priorities and objectives.
A few examples of personalized learning with Safari
With Safari’s new platform, we have applied user-focused technology with recommended titles, collaborative tools and Safari Queue for offline reading.
Additionally, our development team is constantly creating fresh ways to access and learn about new and popular titles in Safari. This HTML widget gives our learners a convenient, on-demand search option to embed where they see fit.
Help your team develop highly marketable and competitive skills by learning more about Safari for Enterprise today.