Skill development and keeping one’s self abreast with the latest developments in the market has become the need of the hour. Constantly learning and the need of the learner to absorb information in the simplest, most time-conserving way possible has become imperative. Organizations have recognized the varied needs of the learner today. This is where microlearning comes into play.
To keep this simple, micro-learning is a concept wherein complex or time-consuming concepts are broken down into units. This makes it easy to consume by the learners as the focus is on short, specific topics, which in turn makes retention easy. The reason for the development of the microlearning concept is due to the increased inefficiency of the traditional learning methods, such as classroom lectures, memorization and a one-size-fits-all learning method.
Let’s dive into the various other reasons that traditional learning methods are no longer effective:
- Lack of productivity: While it is still a common practice among corporates across the globe to send their teams to day-long learning sessions, it has been proved time and again that the amount of information that is actually retained by the employees, or their takeaways from the sessions have been found to be far more negligible in comparison to the time wasted in not being productive at work. In fact, a Brandon Hall report on eLearning within corporations found that e learning boosts retention rates by 25 to 30% in comparison to 8 to 10% , with traditional learning.
- No established correlation between productivity and traditional methods of learning: While lectures and seminars have existed in the learning and development space and have been the most common method of teaching or training, a direct connect between the two has not been established. It has thus become imperative to find methods of learning and emulating the habit of learning through real time methods and experiences, which have been found to be far more effective and engaging. Recently, there have also been cases where a direct correlation between productivity and micro-learning.
- Environmental impact: Studies have found that online mediums or other real time sources of learning such as SAP Enable Now, Whatfix and Workday Guided Tours equate to an average of 90% less energy and 85% fewer CO2 emissions per learner than traditional learning methods.
It has thus become imperative for corporates to follow learning methods which have been proved effective over time, while it does not deter the employees from their work, so that productivity is not lost. Microlearning can prove to be an effective substitute to much of the learning that is traditionally done in the classroom, which is why major corporations are investing heavily in it:
- There is a better retention of concepts that are being taught.
- Employees are able to transfer the concepts being learnt, and directly use the same to address challenges in the workplace.
- Corporates save on a lot of time and resources by diverting more of the same to strategic functions, thereby increasing productivity.
- Microlearning can be deployed at scale without compromising on the learning experience across learners.
Implementing Micro-learning in your organization:
The operations in an organization are multifold, so to draw your attention to how micro learning can be implemented to critical areas of operation in your organization, let us break it up into different aspects:
- Onboarding: Onboarding is a very critical activity- both from an employer and employee’s perspective. It has a bearing on the longevity of the employee’s career with the organization, performance etc.
2. Operations: It has become the need of the hour to find solutions that cut investment of time and increase efficiency, and corporates have realized that incorporating learning as part of the organizational system is the only way to sustain, let alone grow. Micro learning has found an effective solution for the same.
3. Customer delight: Businesses are increasingly looking to find ways and means to address customer requirements and are in constant pursuit of finding the perfect mechanism which can be implemented in their companies.
4. Growth and development: Lastly, every organization looks to integrate the growth of the organization along with the development of their talent pool. Micro learning solutions for the same have been found to be very effective.
Learning is an evolving process, and it has taken many forms over the years. While micro learning has broken down learning into small units, another concept that has made learning even more effective is Learning in the Flow of Work, popularized by Josh Bersin – which is a concept that recognizes that for learning to really happen in a corporate space, it must fit around and align itself to the work schedules of employees.
In the next part of this series, we will be exploring this idea, how it has helped organizations transform their learning techniques, and the advantages of this concept with real-time examples.