Over the last 18 months, working – for the first time – with experts in user experience (UX), I’ve come to truly appreciate the need to put the learner (our own end-user) at the heart of what we do in L&D. In our everyday lives, the products and services – at least those that are successful and enduring – have UX at their heart, from the design of the product, through to its packaging and how it’s delivered, be that online or through more traditional approaches. And these brands never stop refining whatever it is they do. They truly listen to the voice of their users; and when they’ve stopped listening, they’ve faltered. There is so much we can learn from them.
Over the last 14 months, as part of a team creating a new generation learning management system, I’ve come to truly appreciate the need for L&D to strive relentlessly to offer learners simplicity when it comes to their learning. With hindsight, I will now confess to having developed some amazing learning solutions, but which now look overly complex when it comes to meeting the needs of the modern learner. Talking to learners – and seeing things afresh through their eyes – has taught me that we, as L&D professionals, need to look again at what we deliver.
Here are some of my thoughts on how we could achieve this. Continue reading “Driving a simplicity agenda in L&D”
Over the last seven months, as I’ve researched the use of virtual reality (VR) to support learning and explored its potential with numerous L&D professionals, it’s been really encouraging to see the focus expand from subject areas such as health and safety and employee on-boarding (always a sound starting point) to how VR could be used to support behavioural change programmes.
In part this stems from the power of VR to deliver the concept of “presence”, which – in fact – I maintain should be one of the primary drivers for choosing a VR option.
“Presence” is the sense of becoming someone else, being somewhere else, or interacting with something that’s not actually there.
It’s also down to the fact that the use of 360° video – one of the most straightforward means of getting started with VR – offers a lot of scope to deliver an appropriate immersive experience to support this type of training. Continue reading “Using 360° Video Virtual Reality to Support Behavioural Skills Training”
It’s that time of year when we reflect on the last twelve months and plan for next year. Many of us will look to set some new year’s resolutions and most likely in the knowledge that they will be hard to keep.
In 2016 some commentators pointed out the home truth that many L&D teams seemed unable to generate the outcomes they sought, despite having the best of intentions and having – quite often – been prepared to announce these publically. Something, the commentators lamented, seems to constantly hold the profession back from making the desired inroads.
So my challenge to the profession is to make 2017 the year that you try one new thing; and that might be as simple as one project that tries out that one new thing. Keep it simple, start small…but start!
Here are some of my suggestions. Continue reading “The New Year’s Resolution Challenge”
With all the interest I’m seeing in the use of VR for learning, it’s sometimes easy to forget its poorer cousin – augmented reality. The topic of AR tends to pop up towards the very end of the conversation, yet its potential as a learning tool is underestimated. In fact AR is relatively simple to develop – well within the skill set of most of us – and can deliver very valuable learning opportunities. Continue reading “Getting started using augmented reality for learning”
In the survey my organisation ran earlier this year, over half of those companies responding said that virtual reality was the next learning technology they wanted to explore. The research also pointed to L&D teams needing to up-skill their own knowledge about VR, to examine how they might overcome some of the challenges and to find the right place for it within their learning interventions.
One of characteristics of VR is that sessions should be short – say up to 5 minutes at any one time – and this provides L&D professionals with an ideal opportunity to introduce VR into the mix sooner, as part of a blended offering. It’s very understandable that a large-scale, high-end VR project is not something that you undertake lightly, but starting with something short and simple – and with a large audience appeal – makes perfect sense and is a great way to get started. Continue reading “Adding VR to your learning blends”
Recently many of the conversations I’ve had have turned to the topic of integrating individual talent-related systems together to create one seamless user experience and how that should look. Industry analysts also report that this is a growing area of interest. I know, from personal experience, that it’s pretty straightforward to find best-of-breed standalone solutions, but much harder to find the one system that perfectly integrates these all together, with sacrificing functionality along the way.
I’ve taken a step back and taken a holistic view of what an integrated talent suite should offer, not so much in terms of the user experience – as important as that is – but in terms of the functionality that will add the most value to the business. For me, it’s the story told by the data that originates from each component in the mix that provides the real impetus to integrate. And the problem I believe we are trying to solve: finding, developing and retaining the maximum number of high-performing staff to deliver the business’ objectives. Continue reading “Designing an integrated talent suite that adds value”