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Marcela Pineros


Senior Solution Architect

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Rethinking training


As part of strategy month, Marcela Pineros looks at how we can improve our training methods. 

"We need to look at our training through the eyes of a shifting market and evolve the parts that make the most business sense."

This was the takeaway message I provided a client in a recent professional services engagement. This client is known for forward-thinking training programs. And yet, rather than be satisfied with their position, they strive to continually improve their education services. As a part of this commitment to thought leadership, they approached me to take an objective look at their current deliverables.

Faced with compressed innovation cycles and continuous pressure to make knowledge and skills available to key stakeholders, this organisation has fine-tuned their content development machine with a focus toward agility. And yet, their challenges echo many in the industry. How can we make our content more engaging without compromising scalability and efficiency? 

My research confirmed that the answer lies in making the switch to 'Training as a Service' (TaaS). This approach takes into account the influx of disruptive technologies, informal learning, and growing information around how the brain works to provide a service that is of highest value to business and learners alike.

So how can your organisation begin to make the switch? Consider these four steps: 

  • Rethink content: Recent research has shown that learners will only retain about 78% of the content we share. How can we ensure the part they remember is what is most important? Break up content into need to know and nice to know. Let learners be the driver in their own process and they are more likely to adopt the information and skills we need. 
  • Rethink quality: Often, our quality models are linked to error-free products and internal stakeholder satisfaction. In the new market, that is not enough. Consider instead how your content and training programs fare against the following criteria: ease of access, learning effectiveness, scalability, learner satisfaction, and industry satisfaction. 
  • Rethink consumption: Training content has to compete against all of the other demands in the learner’s day-to-day life. To be truly valuable, give learners just enough content for when they will need that information or skill. Plan to deliver content in the format that will be most palatable to your target audience by chunking monolithic courses into small nuggets and tagging them so they are easy to access. 
  • Rethink design: Invest in tools and templates that support effective learning in a scalable way. Adopt an agile instructional design approach with built-in user feedback checkpoints to ensure you hit the mark. Content for the sake of content is a thing of the past. Be ruthless in editing and ensure that everything you include has a solid reason to be there.

Change is the new normal. It is unlikely that our training landscape will stabilise, and much like buildings and bridges, if we can’t bend with the wind, we will break. Apart from revisiting models and processes, we need to reprogram our mindset. It is tempting to fall back on what has worked in the past, but doing so only resolves your challenges today and gives your forward-thinking competitors an edge in the long run.

Look at your training through the eyes of a shifting market and identify which pieces make the most business sense to evolve. In doing so, you could be well on your way to ensuring a spot in the TaaS market.

Marcela Pineros, is senior solution architect at PulseLearningPulseLearning focuses on designing customised learning solutions for clients that make measurable, positive business impact

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Marcela Pineros

Senior Solution Architect

Read more from Marcela Pineros

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