Mobile Learning is the Key to Remote Working
Our socially distanced lives of late have been running on constant online connectivity. Working professionals have redefined their interactions with colleagues and customers to be almost entirely virtual. However, this abrupt switch to remote working, Zoom meetings, and even virtual team lunches and coffee breaks was not easy for everyone. Equipping employees not previously set up for telecommuting is not instantaneous during a crisis, let alone conducive for ongoing learning and development.
But mobile devices are ideal for quick access to information, communication, and collaboration, and are being utilized more now than ever. The number of smartphone users in the world today is 3.5 billion, including 81% of US adults, 91% of all college graduates, and 96% of Americans aged 18-29, according to Pew Research. Mobile learning takes advantage of this ready access by enabling employees to take training seamlessly across almost any device. Industry reports had indicated that the mobile eLearning market would reach $38 billion by the end of 2020, but this will likely increase significantly due to mandatory remote working.
Mobile learning empowers learners to continue their development however and whenever they choose, which is the new norm for the current environment. It is vital that organizations understand how videos, microLearning nuggets, assessments—even games and augmented reality—can all be easily delivered on the go via mobile devices. Industry surveys have found that 72% of workers report increased engagement with mobile learning, and many organizations are now realizing the numerous benefits and strategies the technology offers.
Collaboration via Social Media
Social media has great potential for employees to share and express knowledge and information. Facebook, WhatsApp and LinkedIn are the commonly used applications with multiple advantages like teamwork, feedback, and engagement that can be utilized through mobile devices. Mobile learning encourages collaboration using peer-to-peer learning and social learning strategies. Online discussion forums and post-training experience sharing groups built on the model of popular social platforms can help evaluate the effectiveness of learning in how it is applied on the job.
Upskilling and Reskilling
With millennials comprising a large part of the workforce, there’s a demonstrated need to provide access to information the way they expect to consume it—on their own schedule via their preferred devices. Mobile learning has been shown to increase retention and is well suited for upskilling of employees, training new employees, and providing access to performance support tools. The rate of engagement and involvement is higher with mobile learning than courses delivered via traditional methods. With the evolution of the remote working landscape, mobile learning provides the needed access for organizations to improve employee skills and ensure learning is available on demand.
Forrester Research reports that 75% of employees are more likely to watch a video than read emails, documents or web articles. Organizations have seen the benefits of interactive video-based learning via mobile devices to motivate and improve employee performance. Learners are in control of the experience, enabling them to proceed at their own pace, watch and revisit specific videos, and participate in more frequent viewings. Interactive videos keep learners engaged with a familiar format and digestible content, resulting in a more accessible and engaging experiential approach to remote learning.
With the workforce looking for the most engaging ways to access knowledge, mobile learning applications can facilitate interactive lessons, assignments, discussions, and games. One industry survey found that 89% of employees believe they’d be more productive if their work was more gamified. With remote learning, delivery options need to provide quick, actionable feedback. MicroLearning continues to evolve through responsive design tools, allowing learners to experience different types of mobile interactives to improve their performance. Job-specific tasks and just-in-time learning provided on mobile devices allows immediate access to knowledge that remote learners need now more than ever.
There are many learning design options today. However, retention is the key to demonstrating competencies. Organizations that offer immersive experiences via mobile devices are seeing higher retention, better completion rates and quicker application of job knowledge. Consider game-based microLearning, game-based mobile apps, game-based Virtual Reality (VR) or Augmented Reality (AR) when developing your learning strategy. VR and AR have been increasing in public adoption, with one report finding that 13% of the US population (42.9 million people) used VR in 2019, while mobile AR is projected to hit 3.5 billion users by 2022. Developing experiential learning through immersive solutions will bridge the ways employees used to learn with knowledge acquisition in the new remote landscape.
There has never been a more critical time to transform in-person training to convenient mobile-friendly content. Through quick, accessible courses, refresher trainings, learning nuggets, microlearning videos, games, and simulations, robust mobile learning strategies enable learners to remain engaged, keep improving, and take ownership of their development.
To find out more about how KnowledgeWorks Global Learning can help you develop engaging mobile solutions and a strategic mobile readiness plan, please contact: Kelly.Lake@kwglobal.com.