Putting learner experience at the centre of the digitisation of learning

Learner experience is a critical measure in evaluating the success of a training programme or piece of learning content. If the learner doesn’t find the content relevant or engaging, ultimately the information will be ignored. What was created with good intentions has become a time-consuming and unnecessary exercise with little to no positive impact.

As technology becomes further integrated into our working lives it’s inevitable that L&D will need to invest in digitising learning. Through this, they can provide learners with solutions that allow them to learn on-the-go through apps and social channels and develop their skillset through tailored content that supports their career goals and current role productivity. To ensure optimal engagement and learning experience, strategy around the digitisation of L&D should have learners at the core.

Our latest white paper: The digital opportunity: Striking the digital balance for better learning experiences reveals how L&D and business leaders perceive the impact of digitisation upon learning and what needs to be done to satisfy learners’ demands in a tech-enabled workplace. And with 79% of L&D leaders surveyed highlighting the importance of learner experience in boosting employee performance and productivity, it’s crucial that L&D professionals utilise the opportunity that digitisation is providing to enhance learner experience without forgetting what the learner themselves want from their learning programmes.

Why digitisation of employee learning needs to be implemented

Almost half of L&D professionals we surveyed consider improving learner experience and engagement to be their current biggest challenge. Encouragingly, as they look to overcome this through the digitisation of learning design and content,  75% are confident their organisations are putting learner experience at the centre of this.

Learner experience and engagement is an ongoing challenge within L&D, even more so as the workforce evolves. Learners need to develop their skillset but if the content on offer isn’t providing what they want, engagement will inevitably decrease. With budgets under pressure and demonstrating ROI becoming critical, if learner experience doesn’t appear to be a success then validating the requirement of L&D and further investment into technology to stakeholders will become another challenge to face.

It’s clear that L&D teams understand how imperative learner experience is to increasing engagement. However, they also know that digital is not the only solution. Just 51% of L&D leaders believe that digitisation will improve learner experience. It’s important to ensure that learners have the right information in the format that best meets their learning needs.

People are unique and their learning experience should be too

Digitisation of learning is innovative and shows current and prospective employees that you’re an organisation investing in the latest technology to support career development through a multitude of channels and programmes. But is that what learners really want?

Working alongside people to progress and better their working prospects and wellbeing, L&D professionals know that everyone is unique. People have differing wants, requirements, reasons for the such and journey for getting where they are today. So, if everyone is unique, shouldn’t the way they learn be unique to them too?

Curating the experiences learners want

It’s interesting to note employee responses when asked whether learning should be a human or machine automated function. 55% believe humans should be the overriding driver in supporting a learner’s development yet 45% feel that machines can do the leg-work required. Evidently,  there’s no set way in which people want to learn or to be engaged with. And this is what makes it so important to work closely with employees. This makes it possible to identify what they want from both their career development and learning programme but also the relationship they want to have with L&D themselves. Is it a human-centric approach or a hands-off technologically-driven strategy? Engaging with learners  is required to answer this and curate learner experiences that people want and will engage with.

Learner experience can be greatly improved and enhanced through technology. Algorithms can carve out learner journeys using specific content based upon career paths, skillsets and optimal way learning. Digital platforms allow L&D teams to monitor, evaluate and report on engagement, interaction and development. This provides the quantitative analysis that was once unavailable. To reap the rewards of digitisation, learners must be listened to and open channels of communication created. Learning must be engaging, relevant and delivered through the appropriate channels. By doing so, this can meet learners’ continually changing needs as their role, skills and potential career choices evolve.

Discover how the L&D space is working towards digitisation of learning in our whitepaper, The Digital Difference: Striking the Digital Balance for Better Learning Experiences.