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Allan Pettman

Cognito Learning


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There is no doubt the Covid-19 pandemic has changed our lives in lots of ways, and whilst we can all clearly see plenty of downsides, there are positives emerging, such as the profound impact it has had on learning and development (L&D) strategies.

Revealing research

Research from Fosway Group, Europe’s leading HR analyst, reveals how interest in digital learning has increased significantly since the start of the pandemic.

Fosway’s data shows 94% of businesses have changed their L&D strategies as a consequence of lockdowns and 21% have implemented a new digital learning solution. This means the pandemic has forced employers to tear up the traditional L&D rulebook and look at new ways of providing training that is both effective and engaging.

It’s difficult enough encouraging people to embrace training when everyone is in the workplace, but as remote working has become commonplace, the problem has intensified.

Working from home also means there is more room for human error. If people are unsure about something, that could relate to a company procedure, compliance or anything else, and can’t quickly double-check with a colleague sitting next to them for instance, there’s more of a chance they will make the wrong call. Whether it’s a minor blip or a full-blown howler, most companies can’t afford for this to happen!

Digital learning has become the solution

As a result, employers have had to quickly find feasible solutions, and digital learning has proved to be both the answer and the saviour. Consequently, the introduction of digital learning solutions has been accelerated at lightning-fast pace. Although it was happening anyway, what could have taken a decade to implement has occurred in just over a year.

Digital learning is now seen by employers and employees as a preferable and viable alternative to in-person training, rather than merely a temporary workaround solution.

Before the pandemic, face-to-face learning was by far the most popular form of training among users. Data from leading workforce transformation partner, GP Strategies, shows that in 2019, 64% of learners preferred either classroom-based teaching with either a group or on a one-to-one basis. Just 18% preferred learning alone and a measly 13% said that online learning was their favoured option.

How things change!

Fast forward two years and the appeal of digital learning is through the roof! The number crunchers at Fosway Group found 82% of senior business stakeholders had seen demand increase for digital learning. Amongst end users, 71% of respondents reported higher demand for digital learning.

This is supported by The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and Accenture, which have now found that seven in ten organisations are reporting an increase in the use of digital or online solutions over the last year. Plus, more than a third of organisations have increased their investment in learning technology in the past 12 months.

What does the future hold?

The pandemic has required all industries to re-evaluate how they train their staff, but all the data suggests that the popularity of digital learning will continue to grow, even after life gets back to normal.

For most organisations, the switch to a digital model has gone well, with 77% of organisations saying they are successfully using learning technology and 69% said they are innovating in their use of learning technology according to the CIPD and Accenture’s research.

It’s clear that things have changed for good. Digital learning, with its AI capabilities, cost efficiencies, gamification elements, convenience and overall effectiveness, now makes it a leading player in the L&D toolbox.

Now the genie is out of the bottle, there’s no going back!

One Response

  1. Allan, thanks for the nice
    Allan, thanks for the nice articulation on the future of workplace learning. I find that there is a sharp rise in self paced learning not just because the new generation prefers it but also because of the flexibility that remote work is offering.

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