We’ve all found ourselves in those meetings that could’ve been accomplished with an email. Yet, the flipside is equally common: the chain of emails that could have been resolved in a quick, stand-up meeting. The coronavirus has transformed the workplace and complicated the way information is distributed. Many employees are choosing to stay in this remote work environment. A recent poll reported that nearly half of the companies responding were considering downsizing their office footprint. The workplace is once again taking a new shape.
Meetings are also changing. Where an in-person, “all-staff” meeting may have been routine, for many that is no longer an option. Finding efficiencies will likely be a focus for many organizations in 2021, especially as so many companies have pivoted to remain relevant. Learning and development programs must also be reexamined to be better suited for the world of tomorrow. Here are five tips to find L&D efficiencies in 2021.
- Disruption in Delivery
Prior to COVID-19, traditional instructor-led training was a perennial leader in training methods. For many roles and organizations, this in-person format will remain because the need for immediate feedback and/or observation is crucial to the process. For a larger portion of the workforce, updated safety measures compounded by increasing remote employees will likely change the training playbook.
For some employees, in-person training simply isn’t an option anymore. Fortunately, a sudden rise in virtual meeting platforms have enabled L&D programs to continue. Migrating learning programs to virtual instructor-led training events could be a simple way maintain learning continuity, or at least a cost-effective temporary solution. Brainier now offers turn-key integrations with the major players in virtual meeting platforms, as well as the native platform, Brainier Meet, available in v10.0.
2. Time to Rethink Strategies
By now, meaningful data is likely trickling in on how successful learning programs have been since the lockdown began. This is an excellent time to analyze the data to see what is working and what is struggling. For programs that adapted to an eLearning delivery or even a virtual instructor-led training method, examine the outcomes versus the resources required to create them. Measure the relative costs of an ongoing ILT delivery versus the creation and maintenance of an eLearning component. One clear advantage to eLearning is the repeatability of training for consistency and the ability to scale.
Another important metric to note is the effectiveness of the program in a new delivery method. Does the learning content engage the learner in a different format? Getting feedback from learners may be a necessary step to find improvements. Have the goals for the program been disrupted from the change? Though programmatic goals aren’t always easy to assess in a short time frame, it may be worthwhile to look for any signals of progress.
3. An Opportunity for Mentorship Programs
For organizations that have employees with a range of skills, knowledge, and experience, mentoring programs have long been a cost-effective method of employee development. Organizations in the non-profit sector frequently utilize these types of programs due to a shared drive toward the mission and occasional lack of a budget for formalized learning programs. Mentorship programs can be effective with both a formal and informal structure; however, there is greater accountability when they are integrated in the LMS.
Historically, these programs were aided by proximity and access. Sharing a workplace with a potential mentor put 2 people in the same place at the same time, but the shift to a remote workforce has disrupted that model. In a way, working remotely has made proximity to a mentor irrelevant. Not only is program continuity possible with virtual meeting software platforms, but they are now easier to facilitate. Creating groups of relevant learners is easy to set up in the Brainier LMS based on role, interests, and experience. Within these groups there is the space to collaborate, share relevant content, and communicate best practices toward a common goal.
4. Responding Quickly with Content
Updating existing learning content isn’t always easy, fast, or cheap. However, delivering new learning content may be mission critical in moving the organization forward in response to a crisis. Creating custom learning content has never been easier with the Brainier LMS. Something as simple as a virtual ILT event that get recorded, uploaded, and assigned to the appropriate learners can be a quick and cost-effective way of launching a learning objective. Creating subgroups in the LMS is another convenient way to distribute relevant content quickly to specific users.
5. Document Ownership Simplified
Working with shared documents seems like a problem that should have been solved in the early 2000s, but many of us discovered when transitioning to working remotely that the issue persists. Changes made to a shared document while offline has a strong potential to cause unnecessary confusion and delay. This idea of a central hub for all learning materials is the basis for The Brainier LMS. Thankfully, many reporting functions in the LMS have eliminated the need to maintain certain documents. For files that require manual entry, (and that don’t contain potentially sensitive data) keeping a single-source-of-truth file in the LMS seems like a logical solution.
Getting On With A Changing World
Keeping L&D programs lean, efficient, and agile can be difficult, especially as the rules change seemingly overnight. Thankfully, the challenge to do more with less, and more quickly than ever before, is not exclusive to learning and development. Using technology like The Brainier LMS to help streamline processes, create automations to ease administrative duties, and find efficiencies is a game-changer for organizations facing the challenges of 2021 and beyond.