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E-Learning Punk
Learning Campaigns

When an Awareness Week Is Not Enough – Engaged Learning Through Learning Campaigns

Using learning campaign portals to create immersive learning campaigns

Some things just can’t be learned in an hour. Or even a week. Things like organisational change management – where attention needs to be focused on a specific topic over a prolonged period. In these cases, sustained learning is key.

 

It’s a little bit like classic advertising. Coca-Cola’s annual advertising presence, for example, doesn’t hinge on a single one-week TV spot campaign. Instead, the company draws attention to its products over a sustained period using a strong, well-coordinated multi-channel campaign. It’s all carefully designed to ensure consumers reach for the red can the next time they open the chiller.

 

In the same way, a good learning campaign should bring about a mind shift – ideally one that leads to concrete action. Sounds good, but how exactly? The answer is portals. They can provide a highly effective entry point to learning campaigns. In this article, we outline the structure and use of learning campaign portals.

punk learning campaign portals breaker

Immersive user interfaces for specific topics

With organisation-wide learning and development (L&D) campaigns, the idea is to reach as many employees as possible. And for that, the content must be both learner-centric and accessible without any time or location constraints. Most importantly, it must boost learning motivation and generate successful, lasting learning outcomes.

 

These objectives can be achieved by using a learning campaign portal. Learning campaign portals are add-ons for learning management systems. They facilitate orientation in complex learning campaigns, providing learning environments that are so immersive, learners don’t even realise they’re learning.

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These interactive learning environments are custom developed for each client and brand. Learners can make their own way through the navigation structure and access different items of learning content through jump labels. The result is a digital journey of discovery that is almost limitless in scope. Chatbots, avatars, and dynamic environmental and special-effect sounds can be integrated to reinforce sustained learning effectiveness. Similarly, gamification elements can be added to further enhance learner motivation.

Some applications of learning campaign portals

  • Change campaigns: Change campaigns are a way of making lasting change to employee mindsets and corporate culture. The objective is to boost acceptance through learning. That way, employees are more amenable to the proposed changes and more willing to contribute to their success.

 

  • Events: Many organisations use action days to raise employee awareness of certain issues and communicate the organisation’s position on those issues.

 

  • Onboarding and upskilling: Effective onboarding gets new employees off to a good start with the company. It also creates a sense of belonging and instils an understanding of the company’s values and culture.

 

  • Comprehensive learning journeys: Learning journeys put the learner first and offer different learning formats for different topics and learning objectives.
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Gaming meets navigation system

The heart of a learning campaign portal is a 2D or 3D map. Alongside its orientation function, the map draws the learner into a fun, game-like journey of discovery. This gamification element is designed to appeal to the young and youthful. However, a good learning campaign portal will be readily accessible for learners of all backgrounds thanks to its intuitive navigation system and quality orientation features.

 

Example: A company wants to run a six-month sustainability and environmental campaign. The aim is to explain the company’s own position, raise employee awareness, and bring about a mind shift. In this example, the company could integrate a portal upstream of its LMS that guides employees through all learning content relevant to environmental protection.

 

There are no design limits to how this might be achieved. In the above example, the map through which learners journey could be a rainforest or ocean, for instance. Or perhaps the company wants to present a future vision of its own site or visualise the campaign by means of a custom campus. This level of creative freedom calls for good sparring partners who, for all their love of the product, are always mindful of functionality. This is where our experts come in. They provide comprehensive advice on all aspects and put successful learning front and centre.

imc navigation map

The facts:

  • Learning campaign portals are not ad hoc solutions – they require a planning and development phase.
  • The scope of learning campaigns should be limited either to specific content or specific timeframes.
  • A learning campaign portal is not a stand-alone product – it requires a learning system (LMS).
  • Independent exploration of a map will enhance motivation.
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How Tinder and Netflix are shaping the future of learning

In a challenging environment, corporate learning will remain effective only if it is learner-centric and offers formats that are in keeping with learners’ other everyday digital experiences. This is important because learning providers are no longer competing just with other learning providers; they are also competing with dating apps, streaming services and social media.

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E-Learning Punk is an article and talk series for all L&D Pros who want to dare something and believe that digital training has to be colourful and loud.

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I joined the imc newsroom team in 2021. As a journalist my heart beats for content and storytelling.

 

I’m excited to figure out how e-learing and digitization affect the future of work. My task is to create content to talk about and I’m always looking for trends.

 

Privately I love to travel and eat Tapas.

 

Topics: E-Learning Trends, Corporate Social Responsibility, Press and Influencer Relations

Nina Wamsbach
Communication Manager
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LMS Hot Topics
Moving Beyond Learning Paths

Development Paths: Moving Beyond Learning Paths

Learning paths have been part of corporate learning for a while, but they’re not being used to their full potential. Learning paths offer more than just a way of providing short-term training for employees. They can be an absolute game changer in the fight to overcome skills shortages.

LMS Hot Topics

Greater potential than you might think: Learning paths in LMS

Used correctly, with proper planning and linked to job profiles, learning paths can be a valuable tool for long-term, targeted employee development. Some companies are already aware of the value of learning paths in their bid to overcome skills shortages. They systematically foster lifelong learning and are using them to good effect through their learning management systems (LMS).

 

This is possible because learning paths are core parts of commonly used learning platforms. Put simply, learning paths are used to map long-term training and professional development plans that span multiple courses. These courses can consist of a very wide range of learning content types, including online courses, face-to-face training, and even periods of blended learning. And often there are dependencies between the individual courses: the learner can’t book Course B until they have successfully completed Course A or met some other prerequisites.

Learning sequence and dependencies within learning paths

Applying these sorts of rules regarding the logical order of learning steps gives rise to various learning concepts. For example, you can create open learning concepts with freely selectable module sequences so the learner can choose the order in which they progress through the modules. Alternatively, you can create closed scenarios in which the sequencing of modules is fixed.

 

Moreover – and this is where it gets interesting – you can set up these scenarios either as content-based or level-based learning paths. Interesting because this is the point where learning paths become true development paths.

Leveraging content-based learning paths for more structure and better learning experiences

Content-based learning paths are the classic solution and are found in most learning platforms. You can use them to provide and track structured learning content over longer time frames. Take, for example, a six-month onboarding programme in which the participants are required to complete a series of diverse courses.

 

In case a new hire is assigned to a certain group – say, Sales – in the LMS, they can automatically be signed up for the onboarding programme for that group (in this case “Sales”).

learning path LMS imc learning suite

Depending on how the learning path is configured, the new employee is then required to take a test. Depending on the results, they are either allowed to proceed directly to certain modules or required to complete the entire learning path. The learner can in most cases work through the modules in any order they like and can book things like face-to-face training themselves.

 

In many cases, successful completion of the learning path is conditional on taking a test or passing an assessment interview. Once the learning path has been successfully completed, our learner automatically receives a certificate, which is automatically stored in the system.

 

Learning paths of this type are a relatively simple way of structuring learning content or courses and are standard in commonly used learning management systems.

Level-based learning paths and recertification

Level-based learning paths resemble content-based ones at first glance but are more sophisticated and offer a lot more options. They consist of three levels, each building on the previous one, and are directly linked to the learner’s skill and role profiles.

Tobias Sommer, imc

This opens up a wealth of applications, as imc business consultant Tobias Sommer explains: “Daimler Global Training, with whom we co-created learning paths of this type, uses them in various scenarios, such as helping employees to meet the requirements of certain job profiles.

 

Other clients use level-based learning paths for recertification. Recertification means that an employee must regularly complete prescribed professional development courses within the learning path in order to maintain their status as a specialist in a certain area.

If the employee does not complete the level by the specified deadline, they lose their specialist status. But if they do complete it, they can use that as proof that they have undertaken the latest training – for a particular software, for example. In this way, Daimler is actively integrating lifelong learning into the everyday routines of its employees while at the same time undertaking ongoing quality assurance.”

learning path LMS

Direct integration of certificates and new jobs

Other options for getting the most out of level-based learning paths include using them in conjunction with job advertisements, certificates, and clearances to access certain documents. In other words, certain prerequisites and access restrictions can be tied to pre-defined levels.

 

Take, for example, a learner who is in learning path two of three. Before the learner can graduate from their current learning path and hence gain access to sensitive documents, their supervisor must confirm in the system that they have acquired all the necessary knowledge. Only then, and after passing a final test, will the learner be authorised to access the documents in question. You can also take the same approach with job profiles: employees are blocked from seeing certain job advertisements until they have acquired the skills needed for the job in question.

 

Then there’s the certificate use case, as Sommer explains: “The system can also be set up to generate certificates automatically so that, on completion of learning requirements, learners automatically receive certificates which are then also automatically stored in their profiles. This saves time by eliminating manual up- and downloads and HR involvement. Learners can receive certificates on completion of the entire learning path or, in the case of level-based learning paths, on completion of each level as well.”

learning path graphic

Using development paths instead of learning paths: What’s the benefit?

As we have seen, the potential of learning paths is immense. Tobias Sommer: “Used consistently, level-based learning paths are more like development paths that can be used to take professional development – or even the push to fill skills shortages – to a whole new level.

 

If I know exactly what qualifications my employees have and consistently provide professional development, I will have the agility, for example, to rapidly fill positions from within the company. I can simply look up which employees might be suitable based on their qualifications and save myself any unnecessary searching.

And that’s why I think this function still has enormous potential, and why I’d like to see more companies recognising that and taking advantage of it.”

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More about our LMS

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I have been working in the Marketing & Communication Team at imc since March 2019.

Communication, creative content and social media are my passion. "KISS - Keep it short and simple" is my credo.

 

To explain complex content in an understandable way and thus make the topic of e-Learning accessible to everyone is an exciting challenge every day.

 

Privately I love to read, play poker and travel a lot.

I am always happy to receive feedback or suggestions.

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Nadine Kreutz
Communication Manager
LMS RfP Requirements

Compiling an LMS RfP requirements document

Are you looking to compile an LMS RfP requirements document to help choose the best training solution for your organisation’s needs?

With hundreds of learning management systems (LMS) on the market today, deciding which one is right for you can be a complicated process. A good Request for Proposal (RfP) can simplify your decision making process by starting off with a training needs and features checklist.

 

Your choices can then be whittled down to a shortlist of LMS solutions that meet your specific criteria, with a final decision based on which provider you most like and trust.

What is an RfP for Learning Management Systems?

A request for proposal or RfP is a document put together by the client and sent to potential learning management system providers in order to start the conversation about suitability and generating a quote.

 

A good RfP will contain information about the organisation and its elearning goals, the number of people (sometimes including external partners and supply chain as well as employees) to be trained, existing technology infrastructure to be integrated into, and any other LMS needs and constraints.

 

LMS providers who feel they can meet these criteria can then send a proposal, and the client can form a shortlist of providers to progress conversations with, and from whom to make a final choice.

Benefits of an LMS Request for Proposal

One of the key benefits of an LMS request for proposal is that it ensures a level of objectivity in the procurement process. By starting with a checklist of essential, then nice to have features, the client can be more assured of suitability in a learning platform, rather than being overly swayed by slick sales presentations.

 

Before talking to a vendor, you can define your essential LMS requirements, before going on to list those that would be a bonus but that you may be willing to forego depending on price or strengths in your must-have criteria.

 

It’s really important to identify which criteria are truly essential to making an LMS work for your organisation, regardless of bells and whistles in nice to have areas. These LMS priorities will help to ensure the project does not fail.

 

Does your project have a strict timescale and / or budget? If you have hard limits to work within, by making these clear within your RfP you can avoid any time-wasting discussions if a vendor simply can not meet them. It also prevents time and budget creep once a project is underway.

 

Because the RfP is an up-front piece of work that can be sent to multiple vendors (and there really are hundreds to choose from), you will usually save time overall because you are not having to repeat yourself in initial email and telephone conversations. You can also avoid conversations with and presentations from companies that can not meet your needs.

 

LMS RfP Components

Your document should have 3 broad RfP components, which are:

 

  • Project Overview
  • LMS Requirements
  • Vendor Expectations

 

Let’s go into each of these sections in some more detail:

Project Overview

This should be a brief (one page should suffice) intro to your project and touch on what you are looking for and why.

 

What is your current training solution and what is it you’re looking to add / change / improve?

 

It should include the name and contact information for your project lead so that the vendor can ask any follow-up questions.

 

It should also include a deadline for the project so that vendors who can not work to your timescale can quickly self-eliminate. Include your timeline for receiving proposals and making a final decision on your vendor.

 

While you don’t need to go into detail on your company history, its founders etc (by all means link to this background info online), helpful information will include your company’s industry, regulatory environment, number of employees to be trained now and down the line, and geography - especially important if there’s likely to be a multilingual component.

 

LMS Requirements

This is where you get into the detail of what you need from a new LMS and can be much longer than the project overview if you have put together a good list of requirements having had consultations across all your stakeholder groups.

Users

This will be much more numbers-based and touch on:

 

  • Learner roles and numbers within each type - on launch and for subsequent roll-outs
  • Geographies and languages
  • Number of courses
  • Existing and desired training media
  • Administrator roles and any relevant hierarchies (an organisational chart may help)
  • Potential numbers of concurrent users

 

LMS Features

If you are relatively new to LMS features or you are replacing a very outdated system, you may be fuzzy on potential functionalities within the ideal platform, especially when it comes to terminology.

 

Feel free to talk here about what you need to achieve with the learning platform if you’re not sure how to define the feature that would make it happen.

 

Common needs / features you might want to think about and place varying levels of importance on include:

 

  • Creation of job roles and competencies defined in each position
  • Enrolment process on courses, including any combination of self-enrolment, automated enrolment by role or manual enrolment governed by managers
  • Multi-tenancy - ie creation of tailored, and even branded, learning environments for different teams, including employee types, external partners and even customers
  • Assessments and certificates - including quizzes, required competency levels and any legal / regulatory compliance needs
  • Reporting tools for administrators and departments such as HR and Legal
  • Mobile access - especially important if you have employees on the go who need to access training materials via a tablet or smartphone.
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LMS Integrations

It’s rare that large organisations will want a learning platform that operates in isolation these days. LMS integrations with existing HR software such as Workday or SAP, a CRM like Salesforce, and other tools managing employee data can save a great deal of time spent on learner admin.

 

It can also improve overall business performance by increasing knowledge sharing across your organisation. Define your existing people software where integration could make life easier.

 

You may want to ask the vendor to tick important features that are available in a pre-populated spreadsheet such as this example. You can assign importance levels to each checkbox before or after sending to the vendor.

Vendor Expectations

Define what you would like to receive back from the vendor. Any experienced LMS provider will have existing templates that they work with and which are often pre-populated to an extent, but you can still request information in a format that suits you.

 

You may want to request an initial one-page summary of their solution that encapsulates what they can deliver and when, and to what budget. This will make it easier to discuss proposals with your peers and other stakeholders without having to go into the fine detail.

 

As an LMS buyer, very important information to receive from the vendor includes:

 

Their company and background

  • How long have they been in business? You don’t want to be a guinea pig or deal with an inexperienced team
  • How large is their team of LMS developers? While you don’t necessarily need to work with the largest companies and all the overhead costs that come with that, you don’t want the risk of single points of failure that come with working with a small business
  • Who are their customers? Do they have experience in your sector and with your company size? If so, this will fast forward their understanding of your needs.

 

The platform

  • Have they ticked all the essential requirements? Don’t let ticking lots of boxes across the must-haves and nice-to-haves cloud your judgement here. A high overall ‘score’ is meaningless if one or to absolute musts are not met - this system just won’t work for you.
  • What is the position on data security? Does it meet any specific needs for your industry?
  • Technical environment - can it work with your IT set-up?

 

Budget

  • Is the system scalable without additional costs per learner or is it priced per learner? The latter benefits smaller organisations but can become painful for larger ones…
  • Is there a separate implementation cost?
  • How does ongoing support work and how is it priced?
  • Are there update / renewal fees and when are they payable?
  • Is user training included or charged separately?

 

Implementation plan

  • Do you start with a limited cohort of learners for user testing?
  • What are the various implementation stages and timescales for each?
  • What involvement is required from the LMS buyer and at what stages?

Summary

Buying an LMS can be a complicated process - especially when you need to factor in your possible future training needs in addition to your immediate requirements.

 

By putting together a detailed LMS RfP, you can help to ensure that your procurement will be objective and evidence-based, helping you to avoid costly mistakes and disappointment.

 

Separate genuine must-haves from nice-to-have features, and you can ensure you meet the needs of all your stakeholders, and that any additional features simply make the new platform more enjoyable and more useful for your business as a whole.

 

Feel free to download this editable checklist to get started with selecting the LMS features that match your needs and wishes.

 

As imc Learning has decades of experience delivering on the training needs of some of the world’s best-known brands, if you’d like to have a conversation about your own elearning project, feel free to contact us for an informal chat.

 

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An Engaging
Learning Experience
How to engage your workforce

Creating the Perfect Learning Experience for a Remote or Hybrid Workforce

Times have changed for L&D - while many large organisations were already putting resources into digital transformation, our workforce is now more dispersed, with hybrid and remote working looking like it’s here to stay even post-Covid.

 

Alongside these trends, we have ubiquitous access to more information through ever-faster Internet and mobile devices, while top talent expect to be supported in their professional development - otherwise, they will move on.

 

What remains the same are people and their motivations. People are fundamental to any company, and what drives a company forward and helps it to stay afloat in a competitive market is an engaged, well-informed and adaptable workforce.

 

Here we look at how to facilitate the personal and professional development of top talent by creating the perfect learning experience for a remote or hybrid workforce, so that training can become a key competitive advantage.

Technology and a Learning Ecosystem

Keeping your workforce at the forefront of your industry requires regular formal training, but also informal and rapid knowledge sharing between employees and departments.

 

The ability to respond quickly to new products, services, industry guidance and competitive environments through learning will give any company a competitive edge, but this can be diminished when working remotely.

 

Whether we’re training face-to-face, digitally or virtually, the fundamentals have remained the same for a very long time; we’re socially motivated learners who need context, reinforcement and practice to acquire new skills. We don’t respond well to formless, monotone, poorly presented content, and we don’t retain information as effectively when we’re not engaged. Making your learning journey engaging, enticing and efficient is where technology can come in.

 

Technology has revolutionised how we design and deliver learning experiences. Today, learners expect a digital training experience that’s accessible, flexible and engaging.

 

They’re used to platforms such as Netflix that neatly package and categorise content for them, and offer a library and playlists with a user-friendly interface.

 

 

There are a wide variety of digital and online tools that can help learners have a positive learning experience. These are especially useful when it comes to mandatory training, such as for legal or industry compliance, which employees know they need to undertake but may not necessarily be enthusiastic about.

 

It doesn’t matter how engaging and talented your experts may be, if the platforms and tools you’re using to host a learning journey aren’t up to scratch then your learner will find it difficult to focus.

 

When seamlessly integrated, there are 3 key L&D tools that can help you create the perfect learning experience even when your teams are disparate. These are the LMS, LXP, and rapid content authoring tools - let’s examine each in turn.

What is a Learning Management System?

A Learning Management System (LMS) maintains, tracks and records a learner's journey, including analysing their comprehension of subject matter and completion of learning events. An LMS will help L&D managers track an individual's or a group’s progress through training by serving as a system of record and audit, and pinpointing where they may need additional help or support.

 

There are several types of Learning Management System which meet various needs and budgets, including open source software, deployed or Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions. An open source solution is free at the point of access and has a committed online community that will update it regularly, rolling out improvements and add-ons for all to use. It can be a good option for companies with tight budgets who desire something to enhance their learning experience without breaking the bank. However, it can be a security risk without expert set-up and support, and can often be plain and uninspiring out of the box, requiring a great deal of design and customisation - all of which comes at a cost of course.

 

A hosted or Software as a Service (SaaS) system runs on someone else's server, is set up by a provider and may offer a more customised solution compared to open source software. These systems are usually quite ready to use out of the box.

 

A deployed LMS solution is set up on computers within your premises, which has its pros and cons. There are greater up-front costs to install the LMS software on-site, but it may save you more money in the long run. This might be a good choice in highly regulated industries and when you have the in-house technical expertise to maintain it.

 

Historically, the LMS can be unintuitive, unattractive and complex for the user, making it difficult to navigate and read or watch the learning content. In some cases, a badly designed LMS can create more of a hurdle to learning than the content itself.

The best LMS, such as what can be found within imc’s Learning Suite, create an easy to use learning journey though, so that learning can be an engaging activity rather than a chore.

 

An LMS is often seen as a solution for top-down training mandated (or at least encouraged by) the employer. It’s not really designed for self-motivated learners to explore new learning opportunities. This is where a Learning Experience Platform can come in…

What is a Learning Experience Platform?

A Learning Experience Platform (LXP) is the Netflix of the learning technology world. A quality learning experience is designed to entice, encourage and excite learners to consume the content. It’s for self-motivated learning to develop their personal and professional knowledge and skills, which in turn will usually bear fruit for the employer too.

 

The LXP is designed to be more intuitive to use than the LMS, and utilised effectively, it should provide contextualised, relevant and custom content from multiple sources in order to cater for different learning styles and preferences.

 

It’s a diverse learning ecosystem of multimedia content exploration.

 

LXPs enable you to create a personalised experience that can curate and recommend the best content for each person.

 

We were talking earlier about how hard it can be to motivate people to undertake essential, mandatory training, such as compliance. Well, an expertly executed LXP should make learning feel fun and easy for your learner, yes really - fun, and in turn, hopefully, it will help employees to feel supported and valued, and help to create a culture of learning within an organisation.

 

Think of the difference between using Netflix or scrolling a government site, what one would you prefer to use? The more at ease and enthused your learners feel in their learning environment the better their journey will be.

 

The imc Learning Suite combines the best of both an LMS and LXP - giving L&D teams what they need to deliver and track training, and giving employees a place to explore learning opportunities for personal and professional development.

What are rapid content authoring tools and how can they help me create quality training content?

Rapid content authoring tools are a form of software that enables experts to create and package learning content using various forms of media. It means your experts or training managers can create new content, make changes and send updates to learners quickly and easily. The working landscape is ever evolving, especially in post-covid times with hybrid working becoming the norm, and tools such as rapid content authoring empower companies to respond swiftly to changes and stay relevant.

 

Adopting content authoring tools can enhance your digital transformation journey as a company, empowering experts and learning and development professionals to create adaptive engaging content promptly.

 

Rapid content authoring tools can help you:

  • Repurpose existing content quickly
  • Keep development costs low
  • Respond swiftly to new products, services, market or environmental changes
  • Update and upscale content quickly
  • Deliver knowledge in easy-to-digest chunks
  • Share content with learners on any device

 

Content-authoring tools include software Articulate Storyline, Adobe Captivate, Lectora and Camtasia. However, you might have in-house subject matter experts willing and ready to create and share their experience and expertise if they can avoid the learning curve of software used by professional instructional designers.

 

imc Express enables the quick creation of elearning materials that are rich, engaging and multimedia, but without that learning curve.

What is a healthy learning ecosystem?

A learning ecosystem comprises the elements that make up your user's learning journey and environment including the tools, platforms and technologies. Just like the natural ecosystem, the more diverse the learning environment, the more effective the learning will be.

 

A complete, well-integrated Learning Suite can enhance not only your learners' experience but your subject matter experts' effectiveness too, enabling them to build engaging content and communicate quickly and efficiently to drive knowledge sharing.

 

A complete learning experience

Technology helps learners have a positive learning experience, especially when it comes to compulsory training where they may lack the motivation to complete.

 

Learners today expect training to be engaging, entertaining and diverse in format. This is especially true as remote and hybrid working is on the rise and our workforce becomes more distributed.

 

People are looking for social connection, a platform that is instinctive to use and easy to digest content that they can absorb and experience digitally or virtually. The latest and best in learning technology can help us achieve all of this.

 

 

 

Want to learn more about leveraging the latest technology to create the perfect learning experience for a remote or hybrid workforce? Contact us here at imc Learning.

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Create the Perfect
Learning Experience

Examples of a Good Learning Experience

Here we offer examples of a good learning experience from a handful of our projects.

 

It’s always a shame when training is rolled out without due consideration for learner engagement. This is one of the reasons that e-learning has a bad reputation - it’s too often seen as a ‘Click next’, box-ticking exercise that employees want to get through ASAP then get on with their day.

 

High quality, engaging e-learning helps to ensure that learners absorb, retain and implement new knowledge and skills, bringing about long-term behaviour change and improved performance.

 

Delivering a good learning experience can also help to create a culture of learning where employees then go seeking out personal and professional development opportunities that will benefit the whole organisation.

 

So on to some examples of where our e-learning solutions, including custom content and learning management systems (LMS), have enabled training to deliver real impact…

Not just good – a Meisterpiece: LMS and blended learning for Jägermeister

Jägermeister has around 1000 direct employees, plus a large network of resellers and external distribution partners around the world, making a large number of people requiring training.

 

At the same time, a coherent and strong brand image that all employees identify with is a top priority for Jägermeister, so the learner experience was considered crucial.

 

They decided to use the imc Learning Suite for their training platform because the well thought out extended enterprise scenario, in combination with the clear module structure, convinced them that we were a good fit for their needs.

Following testing and roll-out, users were especially taken with how the e-learning content triggered an emotional response. The consensus among the employees: Once you log in to Meister Academy, the training courses don’t feel like learning.

 

The direct integration of LinkedIn Learning courses was also received very favourably, as it gives employees an even greater choice of courses.

 

Philipp Terstesse, Manager Global Trade Marketing at Jägermeister, gave the following summary:

 

Our goal was to create a learning experience that takes a new approach and motivates learners. The learner and employee experience were extremely important to us.

 

We firmly believe that our digital ambitions go a long way towards shaping the future of our brand. We are thrilled to have a strong partner in imc who will stay by our side as we embark on this journey into the future together.

 

Read more about our work creating an LMS and blended learning for Jägermeister.

Comprehensive onboarding and learning experience for The Green Climate Fund

Established within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), this organisation based in South Korea was set up to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change.

 

At the time of writing, The Green Climate Fund (GSF) had raised $10.8B USD to support 200 projects and avoid 2.1B tonnes of CO2 pollution.

 

The fund wanted a comprehensive onboarding and training solution providing an understanding of GCF's climate focus, shared values, governance, policies and practices, all underpinned by a learning experience framework and strategy.

We worked closely with GSF to create their Learning Experience Framework - a continuous model of learning and development that embeds opportunities of meaningful experience, exposure and education.

 

This was followed by 20 hours of Digital Orientation Modules, focusing on four core types of digital learning approaches to meet the diversity of needs we discovered throughout our research:

  • Scenario-based training
  • Storytelling
  • Problem-based learning
  • FAQs and resources

As a result of this e-learning, we were able to measure a reduction in human operational and procedural error, while embedding confidence and competence among new employees.

 

imc and the Green Climate Fund were recognised as Platinum winners in the 2021 LearnX awards. Client feedback was also extremely positive - George Zedginidze, Head of Knowledge and Change Management at the Green Climate Fund said:

 

We at the GCF are elated to be partnered with imc! Their professionalism and flexibility has made this project what it is today. We are especially thrilled with the imc team, whose time, effort, and abilities have made this partnership a success.

 

Read more about this onboarding and learning experience project for GCF.

Motivation for an unloved topic: compliance training for Audi

Trainees are usually unenthusiastic about the idea of compliance training even before it begins - to say the least. So Audi wanted to create unusual compliance training, delivered in a way where the necessary knowledge is clearly conveyed to them and they have fun along the way.

Welcome to Fraud City. The city “eats” its residents – skin, hair and all. We hope you’re up to it. Enter at your own risk.

 

Not your usual intro to compliance training! This entire web-based training (WBT) course involved motion design and adopted the style of “Sin City”. It takes the brave participant to a corrupt city full of dangers and suspect colleagues – accompanied by Detective Fraudless.

 

The employee navigates through the training course with the criteria for identifying cases of fraud being revealed along the way. So are behavioural patterns that call for special attention.

 

Audi demonstrated great courage with this unconventional concept – and reaped the rewards: The elaborate and polarising concept leaves a lasting impression, creating a buzz among almost all employees.

 

Laura Schumacher of the Audi Compliance Department told us:

 

Compliance training is always a tricky subject. For this WBT though, we received very favourable feedback from our employees!

 

Read more about this fun and engaging compliance training for Audi.

Want to learn more?

You can see more examples of a good learning experience within the case study section of our website. Can we help you to transform training within your organisation by creating an engaging learner experience?

 

Contact us here at imc.

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Gijs Daemen
Gijs Daemen
Global Marketing Manager
Training Digitisation
Leveraging the knowledge of your people

Training Digitisation – Leverage knowledge sharing among your people

Here we look at the important topics of knowledge sharing and training digitisation, with tips on how to leverage the experience of your employees to improve performance and future-proof your business.

 

For many businesses, especially those within the knowledge-based economy, existing employees are their greatest asset. Staff turnover is expensive for any business. Studies show that the direct cost of replacement is over £30,000 on average to replace an employee earning over £25,000 per annum. However, more detrimental is often the indirect cost that comes with losing valuable knowledge and experience - something that is far harder to measure.

 

Facilitating and encouraging knowledge sharing across your organisation can be an extremely effective way to both enhance productivity within your existing teams and mitigate the brain drain that comes with staff turnover.

 

While your L&D department can roll out training programmes in a planned and centralised manner, a culture of knowledge sharing and a toolkit that makes it easy means that information can be shared at the speed of need (‘Just in Time Learning’) and when it’s convenient for subject matter experts to do so.

Knowledge Sharing Definition

Knowledge sharing is the exchange of information, skills and experience between individuals or across groups. When expertise is shared by an experienced person, it allows further people to benefit from that experience in order to boost their own performance and that of their peers, potentially strengthening an entire organisation.

 

Much knowledge sharing occurs naturally and accidentally through day to day interactions and conversations - those ‘water-cooler’ moments that characterise informal learning or tacit knowledge. Of course, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused (or at least accelerated) the transition to a hybrid or fully-remote work environment, making the accidental water-cooler conversation much less likely for many.

 

That informal kind of knowledge transfer is a social activity that is often hard to describe and organise - it comes with nuance, intuition and the free-flow of ideas.

 

However, explicit knowledge is something that can be more planned for and organised, so that specific information can be codified and made available to others.

 

The main attributes of explicit knowledge sharing are:

 

  • Describable - the subject matter expert must be able to clearly articulate the information and experience they want to share
  • Visible - the recipient must be made aware that the learning materials exist
  • Accessible - the recipient must be able to open and consume the content where and when they need it
  • Organised - the recipient must be able to navigate learning materials so that they can be consumed in a structured manner without confusion or information overload
  • Complete - the education or training content should fit into a wider organisational context, signpost further related information where needed, and clarify any distinction between self-published, employee-generated content and the more top-down learning materials created by an L&D team.

 

Knowledge Sharing Benefits

When you have in-house expertise, you’ll want existing and future employees to be able to access it and enhance their own performance as a result. Knowledge sharing benefits can grow exponentially across a large organisation, spawning new ideas and strengthening the collective brain.

 

With a culture of knowledge sharing and providing the tools for digitising content, along with the structures to support it, a company can gain a great deal of competitive advantage. Some of the many benefits of knowledge sharing include:

 

GUARDING AGAINST 'BRAIN-DRAIN'

If important knowledge is shared frequently and in a well-organised manner, the loss and disruption caused by a key employee leaving is greatly reduced. Information shared by the leaver can be made available to their peers and / or successor, in addition to the general onboarding and training materials.

SUCCESSION PLANNING

While guarding against brain drain is about making the organisation resilient to employee departures by being agile in a reactive situation, succession planning is about looking ahead to (perhaps even scheduling) departures and promotions. This includes the process of knowledge transfer that will need to take place during that transition.

 

Starting in Spring 2021 during the Covid-19 pandemic, employees voluntarily leaving their jobs en-masse in many countries - most notably the US - was a trend dubbed ‘The Great Resignation’ by organisational psychologist Dr Anthony Klotz.

 

The pandemic caused employees in many countries to rethink their work-life balance and many countries, including the likes of the UK, Australia and Canada as well as the US, saw resignations increase, in addition to the millions of forced redundancies.

 

Regardless of Covid-19, millions of ‘baby boomers’ - those born between 1946 and 1964 - are now hitting retirement age. This large cohort of the population holds vast amounts of information and experience to share with their Generation X, Millennial and Gen Z successors.

INTRA AND INTER-GROUP COMMUNICATION & COORDINATION

Two of the great frustrations among business leaders are duplication of effort across teams that wastes resources and a lack of communication that prevents learning from previous mistakes.

 

With greater insight into what other groups are doing or have done in the past - good and bad, knowledge sharing helps time and resources to be used more effectively.

TRUST BUILDING

When individuals hoard information (albeit unintentionally most of the time), trust among peers is diminished. Providing employees with knowledge building tools, such as the ability to quickly and easily create and share digital training materials, more employees will feel supported by each other and that they are working collaboratively as part of a genuine team.

MANAGEMENT SUPPORT

Employees often feel that they are not being listened to, which can lead to discontent and potentially resignations as a result. Rather than only experience top-down training that can feel disconnected from their real-like working environment, knowledge sharing tools and processes can help employees at every level to create learning materials that help to provide management support and information gathering.

 

This can then influence subsequent onboarding and training materials created by management and L&D teams, making them more contextually relevant.

70:20:10 LEARNING

The 70:20:10 learning methodology proposes that, on average, 70% of workplace learning is done ‘on the job’, while 20% is done through the sharing of knowledge between peers and only 10% is through formal, top-down onboarding and training.

 

That 20% part in the middle goes both ways - not only does the recipient benefit from information shared by the expert (making the 70% on the job part feel better supported) but the action of sharing knowledge can actually strengthen even the expert’s understanding of a subject.

 

Studies such as this one detailed in the Applied Cognitive Psychology journal show that learning by teaching others is extremely effective because it enhances the pathways of knowledge retrieval.

Training Digitisation & Knowledge Sharing Tools

Digitising training makes it possible to store and share information with an unlimited number of employees, even across territories, virtually instantly. A good, modern elearning content authoring tool makes it easy for any of your employees - regardless of their technical skills - to share knowledge digitally.

 

Such an authoring tool, like imc Express, can immediately benefit colleagues in any location via the cloud, while this form of training digitisation makes more knowledge available for future recruits too.

 

This is about employee-generated training content, and each person will have their own preferences around the style and media they feel most comfortable using for knowledge sharing.

 

Therefore, you’ll want to make sure your authoring tool enables content creation and sharing though any combination of:

 

  • Text
  • Audio
  • Video (including subtitling)
  • Images
  • Interactive elements

 

There should be little to no learning curve when it comes to an elearning authoring tool for employee-generated training software. It should be easy to access on any device, easy to use, and make the sharing of materials a fast and simple process.

 

It should also provide visual elements out of the box to make that training eye-catching and engaging by default so that your people can be proud of the materials they create - without needing to work at it.

 

For over 20 years, we’ve worked with some of the world’s leading brands, such as Audi, BASF, Sky, Deloitte and Vodafone, supporting their training needs with elearning solutions.

 

This experience has enabled us to create an elearning toolkit that makes it easy for them to digitise training content and make it accessible across multiple locations, countries and even languages.

 

If you’d like to learn more about how our solutions could enhance training digitisation and knowledge sharing within your organisation, feel free to contact us for an informal chat about your needs and goals.

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Panel talk: Fosway Group, Learning Light and imc

Panel Talk: Fosway Group, Learning Light and imc

The Future of Learning Platforms

As businesses emerged from lockdown and social distancing measures in many parts of the world, elearning experts from imc, Fosway and Learning Light got together remotely to discuss the post-pandemic future of learning platforms in 2022 and beyond.

 

Key topics discussed include:

 

  • LMS, LXP, NGDLE, Suites…?
  • Headless LMS
  • Concrete Advice for the Learning Platform Buyer
  • Learning Designer to Performance Consultant

 

Hosted by Alison West, Pre-Sales Consultant of imc Learning in London, the panel of experts discussing these topics consisted of:

Fiona Leteney

Senior Analyst at Fosway Group, who has worked in the learning technology market for over two decades, and brings a wealth of insights from customers, vendors and the market.

David Patterson

Lead eLearning Consultant at Learning Light, who has been influential in the world of elearning and learning technologies for over a decade.

Sven Becker

Executive Board Member at imc, with over a decade’s experience from the vendor’s perspective.

LMS, LXP, NGDLE, Suites…?

Alison kicked off the discussion commenting that there is a large and growing list of terminology describing the learning platforms used for education and training today, so asked David to, for those uninitiated in some of these terms, to describe the differences between them.

 

David

The learning management system (LMS) has been around as a term for many many years, probably dating back to the late 1990s.

 

Recently we’ve seen the evolution of the term learning experience platform (LXP), which is interesting as people are trying to present a new take on digital learning. Part of the motivation is that a new such platform is not an LMS, which is more process-focused, whereas the LXP is more content-orientated.

 

However, in David’s view, we are now seeing these two types of platform on the market fuse together, with many LMS providers adding LXP functionality and vice-versa.

 

Does this matter? Well yes - I buyer of these learning technologies will want to have a clear understanding of what these terms mean. So it’s important, and a goal of this discussion, to explain and simplify some of the terms being used today.

 

 

Alison commented to Fiona that at Fosway, they seem to be moving away from terms such as LMS and LXP and using words such as Suites, asking why that is.

 

 

Fiona

Building on what David said, Fosway have also been seeing a merging of the ideas of LMS and LXP. In fact, before the concept of Suites, Fosway had been using the term Next Gen Learning Environment as a term, because they never really saw LXP as a valid term to describe what a system does.

 

In Fosway’s view, LXP is a marketing term, which was launched into the market and everyone latched onto it. This was because buyers wanted to be buying into the latest technology as opposed to a ‘legacy LMS’. At the same time, vendors didn’t want to be seen as a legacy LMS so adopted the term as well.

 

In reality, when talking to a corporate learning platform, when Fosway ask what they mean when they say they are looking for an LXP, the answer is always very different. So, it was a couple of years ago that Fosway started moving away from using the words LMS and LXP and started talking about Suites and ‘Specialists’.

 

For example, if you’re a smaller organisation and you only have budget for one system - that’s when you need a Suite, because that’s going to give you the broader range of functionality that you’re going to need. If you then have the opportunity to dig deeper into a particular area, you then might look at one of the Specialists.

 

Perhaps you’d look at a specialist tool for content curation, or one that focuses on Instructor-Led Training (ILT). Perhaps you’d add these in, and some vendors facilitate this, whitelisted, to add depth of specialism.

 

That’s why Fosway use the term Suite for not only learning systems, but across HR technology as well.

 

So, Suites for broad capability, with Specialists usually focusing on just one area.

 

 

Alison then put the same question to Sven to gain the platform provider’s perspective.

 

 

Sven

This difference these days is that there is no longer a clear orientation driven by the customer. imc traditionally built systems that were relatively process-driven as David had mentioned.

 

The idea of ‘Learning Experience’ was seen as a commodity - normal for imc’s solutions. Learning Experience is a concept, not a system, so to create a good learning experience, you need to look at the concepts from the learner’s perspective.

 

An important shift is to look ahead, years into the future, when creating an LMS, NGLP (Next Generation Learning Platform) or whatever you want to call it. It isn’t just about post-covid planning - that’s an obvious example, but it should have been part of the thinking long before that and must look beyond the immediacy of pandemic and post-pandemic requirements.

 

What is the user’s working environment? For many, it revolves around a mobile world and great systems are considering the needs of users who need a mobile-first learning system.

 

It’s not just about “does this look good on both a desktop and a mobile” - what is the environment of both types of user? Does the mobile user have different sound restrictions because they might be learning on a busy train for example?

 

To broaden the conceptual thinking even further on the part of the vendor, we need to think about the complete Employee Experience and how does learning dovetail with that. After all, learning experience is just part of the employee experience.

 

 

So, for those feeling overwhelmed by all the terminology still around and the level of choice and complexity involved in the buying process, how should the buyer deal with that overwhelm?

 

 

David

“Listen to someone like Fiona or myself!” People at the likes of Fosway and Learning Light spend their time listening to the business needs of organisations and developing an understanding of their learning requirements.

 

From that, a consultant can uncover the types of learning technology that the buyer will need. Sven made a good point that learning experience is really a concept, rather than a system, and that’s an important takeaway. There will, though, always be technology that facilitates that - and some doing it better than others.

 

Learning Suite is a useful term as well - and the best suites are getting bigger and more capable than ever before. Therefore, it’s important as the client to establish in advance what your learning outcomes are, what the learner journeys are, and what the data is that you’re going to need to understand to underpin your learning and bring back to the wider organisation.

Headless LMS

So, what is the headless LMS and how is it different from integration of deep content?

 

David

The concept of the headless LMS has emerged based on the world of content marketing. It springs from the idea of the headless CMS (content management system).

 

What those systems do is push content out across every channel. The ‘head’ used to be the website, but that has been kind of cut off. The CMS now is presenting content through social media channels, productivity suites, websites and even VR.

 

Several learning platform vendors have looked at this trend and said “Yes - this is a valid concept for learning as well”.

 

This is an evolution, not a revolution, as some companies such as imc have been pushing out highly evolved APIs and deep links into learning platforms and integrated content. The headless LMS is simply the next step on this journey, putting the player into the system.

 

So, the player will start to appear within Microsoft Teams, Slack, your CRM or your CMS, and the learning will then be instantly available to your learners at the very moment they need it. Incredibly rich data will then come back into the core learning platform / suite and really enhance your overall business analytics as well.

 

 

Fiona

There are two requirements that tend to focus corporate engagement with Fosway. Often, large organisations are managing multiple learning platforms and are looking for a single point of access to avoid or eliminate confusion.

 

On the other hand, some companies want to facilitate access to learning wherever the learners happen to be at any point in time, and to then feed back into the learning system.

 

This highlights the need for integration. Back at the start of the pandemic, 84% of business leaders were saying “Now more than ever, we need to integrate the learning systems with our business applications, such as MS Teams or Slack”.

 

Fosway brought together a dozen corporate leaders for a roundtable discussion of this issue, and found among them a lot of frustration with the complexity involved in making integration happen. Yes, APIs exist, but it’s rarely as simple an exercise as they were sold on.

 

Like David said, the headless LMS is an important concept that is starting to improve this, and learning systems like imc are helping in ensuring that data is flowing through the whole tech ecosystem. This includes the learning ecosystem of course, but also the HR systems and the wider business ecosystems out there.

 

The more we can get that data flowing through the whole ecosystem, the better our business decision making can be, and it’s that need for integration that’s coming through loud and clear from corporates.

 

 

Sven

It’s important to note that headless LMS is not just the next marketing term - headless is a complex monster!

 

Sometimes vendors say “it’s OK, we have open APIs, everything is easy” but then the customer finds that this isn’t true. API management is one of the most complex areas of IT. This is why we have to talk about things like RPA - Robotic Process Automation - to help with API management.

 

Again, headless is a concept, not a technology, and it’s about how we structure our learning ecosystem. The learning ecosystem is a culture thing, not a technology thing.

 

This is all about the flow of work - “how can we bring content to our people more easily?”.

 

For example, way back in 2009, Deloitte published a study where they had looked at the modern learner. They found that even then, on average people were looking at their smartphone 9 times per hour to check if there was a new message.

 

So we are driven by the ‘pull’ of information. The current standard learning management system is not ready for this - you have to log in, go to your course, open the right bit of learning etc - but that’s just not how we interact with information today.

 

If we know that people are checking their phones anyway, why don’t we push information in that direction, such as a reminder about key points from last week’s instructor-led training for example - when and where it might be helpful and appropriate.

 

Where this will become more important over the next 5 years is in the greater adoption of IoT - the Internet of Things.

 

We already have Internet enabled fridges. A fridge is able to ‘buy’ milk. In the same way, if we can see that a member of the team is on the train on their way to see a client, why not send them a push notification with three key points to remember about that client for example?

 

This is learning in the flow of work - it’s context-based and it’s what we mean by headless. If we think purely in ‘portal’ terms, whether it’s LMS, LXP or whatever, where you have to go and log in, we’re creating a specific access point for learning and that just won’t be the future.

 

Learning should be ubiquitous, around us all the time, and the culture should be driven by the learners themselves and how they work.

 

Sometimes, customers come to imc and say “give us all the APIs and let’s integrate everything” but we try to say “wait, let’s look at what we need, let’s look at the culture you are trying to create”.

Concrete Advice for the Learning Platform Buyer

So, for those looking to ensure their elearning system is future-ready and future-proof, what concrete advice can you give to a learning platform buyer in the post-covid world?

 

David

It really is about starting at and thinking through at the conceptual level. My own work is a lot about building conceptual models and looking at the information flows around that.

 

Worry first about how you want to structure your learning and keep the needs of your learners front of mind at all times. The choice of technology can then come after that and be based on how you want to deliver on those learner needs.

 

 

Fiona

Of course, Covid has meant that we’ve needed to move more of our training online. We’ve been talking a lot about bite size learning and microlearning for sometime, but the highest value training - onboarding and leadership - has traditionally been classroom-based.

 

That kind of training has very quickly been moved online - which was necessary and it’s great that it happened, but we now need to look very carefully from the corporate, vendor and learner perspectives at what that should really look like.

 

20 years ago, we went from classroom-based training to elearning for all the compliance stuff. This took the engagement piece out of the mix along with the trainer, and people started to hate the ‘click Next’ style elearning - rightly so.

 

The risk now is that learners could start to hate more areas of training now that more has been moved online if we don’t get it right. We need to create a safe place of learning where people can join their cohort to collaborate, do joint assignments etc.

 

We need to look carefully at how learning technology can best facilitate this and must not now sit back on our laurels and say - “we got all our training online so all is fine”.

 

 

Learning Designer to Performance Consultant

Sven built on the buyer tips from Fiona and David, offering advice on how L&D approaches elearning…

 

Sven

We might want to look at how learning is structured within the organisation and perhaps move some L&D roles away from just learning design and into being more of a ‘Performance Consultant’.

 

A learning designer always asks “what is the learning outcome of this programme?”. We need to ask ourselves ”What is the business outcome?”.

 

This is often the failure of learning design - we identify a learning outcome but it doesn’t feed into any business outcome.

 

When you move the Learning Designer to become more of a Performance Consultant, you start to create the best of both worlds - learning outcomes that are fully aligned with the business goals.

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Gijs Daemen
Gijs Daemen
Global Marketing Manager
Learning Platforms
What is what?

LMS vs LXP - What's the Difference?

If you are weighing up the pros and cons of an LMS vs LXP or even an integrated solution in a Learning Suite, here we offer an introduction to these concepts.

 

So what’s the difference between a learning management system (LMS) and a Learning Experience Platform (LXP)? It’s all about push vs pull.

 

What is an LMS?

An LMS is a tool for Learning and Development (L&D) managers, and often HR teams, to roll out training and make it available via desktop or mobile devices. It can enable anytime, anywhere learning if learners can access e-learning content online.

 

The LMS is most commonly used for employee onboarding and compliance training, getting new hires up to speed with health and safety, company procedures, product knowledge, and ongoing training that will support the organisation towards its goals.

 

Because this is very much top-down, it’s the Push side of training and is often mandatory as dictated by the company and managers, and perhaps also by law or industry regulators.

 

The benefits of an LMS include:

 

  • The ability of L&D and HR to roll out training content quickly at scale - even to a global workforce
  • A low cost way to update existing training materials when products, services or legislation change
  • The ability to demonstrate completion of mandatory training, assisting regulatory compliance
  • Learner analytics, which will help to identify individuals or groups need additional support.

What is an LXP?

The LXP is a relatively new concept that puts the focus on the learner and their wants in terms of education and training. It enables the exploration of optional learning content away from anything related to mandatory training.

 

The LXP takes into account the fact that different people have different personal and professional goals, with some people actively seeking out new learning opportunities beyond those specified as being essential by the employer.

 

AI and recommendation engines might be used to suggest e-learning content that might be of interest to each individual based on their current role and potential career path and / or their previous learning behaviour. This is similar to how Netflix will suggest TV shows or movies to watch next based on previous viewing behaviours.

 

Suggested content could be within the LXP itself or hosted externally, such as YouTube videos.

 

As the employee is in control of the pace and content of their learning, it is bottom-up and is the Pull side of training - suggested and encouraged, but never mandated.

 

The benefits of an LXP include:

 

  • Making the employee feel valued and supported as an individual, creating a positive learner experience
  • Creating a way for highly motivated employees to better their knowledge and skills, which in turn can benefit the company because talent can flourish
  • Increased employee retention - the LinkedIn Workforce Learning Report of 2022 showed that with better internal mobility support, companies see an average tenure of 5.4 years - nearly double the 2.9 years found at companies that struggle with it
  • Support for the broader digital learning transformation journey - as learner-initiated training will be more enjoyable, it helps the entire organisation become more engaged with e-learning as the primary way of enhancing knowledge and skills. This not only creates a culture of learning, but can add rocket fuel to the long-term digital transformation programme.

LMS, LXP or Learning Suite?

So with so many important attributes within both the LMS and LXP, do you need both? Many organisations do successfully manage two systems with some integration with HR and people management tools, but this can lead to some inefficiency and additional administration time.

The easier and more efficient way to leverage the benefits of an LMS and LXP is to have a single, integrated solution in a Learning Suite.

This modern solution allows L&D and HR teams to collaborate without duplication of effort and administration time, and allows the learner to seamlessly progress from mandatory training to optional learning for personal and professional development.

If you’re looking to create a culture of learning within your organisation to increase employee satisfaction and improve performance, as well as potentially accelerating digital transformation, a Learning Suite is certainly the way to go.

 

The imc Learning Suite is a modern platform based on decades of experience supporting training at some of the world’s best known brands.

It’s highly customisable and brandable, and supports every type of training, from Compliance to AI-supported, Personalised Learning paths.

Because it easily integrates with existing people management and business software, it can slot in with existing technologies - minimising additional admin time to start leveraging its benefits.

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Forget boring compliance training

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Mandatory compliance training has a bad reputation - it’s seen as boring and often nothing more than a tick-box exercise to sit through in a lecture or click next through in static elearning. Such training is often delivered as part of an employee onboarding process.

There are two major problems for an organisation when this is the case:

 

  • When the emphasis is on just getting through the material and gaining the Pass, the learner may not have been mentally engaged in a way that will ensure retention and truly impact their behaviour long-term, helping to manage personal and business risk.

 

  • It sets a scene for training in general to be boring and ‘unimportant’ to the individual, so when a learner has access to learning that can boost their performance and benefit the whole company, they lack the enthusiasm to jump in and engage.

 

To avoid creating a culture of disinterest when it comes to learning, here we look at how to make compliance training engaging through the use of effective elearning content and a learning platform that makes it easy and enjoyable to access.

worker happy with his role

Make it Relevant to the Learner’s Role

Information instantly becomes more boring when you feel that it will never relate to your life. While some training content will be relevant to the entire workforce, try to minimise the use of generic content throughout, where it has limited relevance to certain roles.

 

The use of branching scenarios means that you can deliver globally relevant training at the outset, but which then forks down role-specific paths. For example certain modules may be signposted for frontline workers, while managers / supervisors can be taken down a different path.

 

The greater appreciation of context will mean that the learner sees relevance within their day to day role.

women has easy access on her phone

Make it Accessible

If you want compliance training to not only get completed, but absorbed and really assimilated into working practice, then it’s important to enable learners to access it in a manner, at a time and in a place that suits them.

 

Unless the training needs to be consumed at a desk on day 1, then mobile-friendly elearning enables anytime, anywhere learning. Might your learners want or need to access the materials on the go? A good learning platform will make it easy for learners to access training anywhere, and for HR or L&D teams to track progress across individuals and groups.

brief information

Make it Brief

Bite-size learning or microlearning enables them to access training in chunks that allow for consolidation between sessions.

 

Numerous studies over the last century, notably Miller’s Law that originated back in the 1950s, have shown that a small number of items (5 to 9) can be held in your short term memory before new information starts to crowd those items out.

 

Deliver training in small chunks that enable consolidation into long term memory between sessions, and create a level of testing and repetition to really help training stick.

training looks amazing

Make it Visually Appealing

Some colour and vibrance will help draw learners into training content and create a better vibe than just black and white text. Even the driest and most technical of subjects can be brought to life with some colour and movement.

Women enjoys audio training

Make it Multimedia

Everyone consumes, absorbs and retains information differently. Some people are drawn to reading text, while others struggle - regardless of proficiency in their work. Some find that they enjoy or learn faster with the audio and visual combination of videos while for some it’s annoying or they are unable to have the sound on at their desk.

 

Where possible, provide options within an elearning course so that every type of learner is catered for.

two women playing games

Make it Fun - Gamify

Even those who display zero signs of competitiveness enjoy games, or at least rewards, now and again. Either games-based learning or the introduction of game-playing elements within a traditional system (gamification) is shown to improve learning outcomes. In fact, gamification has been shown to enhance motivation and improve psychological and behavioural outcomes in multiple arenas.

 

Some modern LMS solutions make it easy for you to create gamification elements within the platform, such as badges or other awards for achievements and learning milestones. You can even create a level of competition between individuals or departments to further increase motivation.

Here at imc, we created, elearning content on the subject of cyber security, which we made available for free to individual users in the form of a game:

Cyber Crime Time e-learning content screen

Cyber Crime Time is a highly interactive game where you the learner get to take on the role of a hacker.

Here at imc, we created, elearning content on the subject of cyber security, which we made available for free to individual users in the form of a game:

Chatbot Cyber Crime Time

A normally dry compliance topic is brought to life by allowing the learner to learn about the risks of cyber crime and how to protect data in a novel way.

In Summary

By following the above steps to making compliance training more engaging, you can help to ensure that the content is really absorbed in order to manage risk.

 

You’ll also help to make learning part of the culture within your organisation, leading to employees being happy to - even seeking - personal and professional development opportunities.

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I wanted to be a fiction writer when I was a child but became a marketing person after graduating from university. Instead of a slick person in a suit, I'm a beardy nerd in unironed t-shirts who like to creatively solve problem, analyse data and reach out to the right people.
Running will help de-stress me after a hard day's work, and I listen to rock music instead of jazz.
Gijs Daemen
Gijs Daemen
Global Marketing Manager
Learning Ecosystems interview with Fiona Leteney
Opinion Piece
Fosway Group's Fiona Leteney on Learning Ecosystems

Fosway Group: "Focus On Your Learning Ecosystem"

Opinion piece by Fosway Group's Analyst Fiona Leteney
Fiona Leteney

Fiona Leteney

Fiona Leteney is the Senior Analyst for Learning Systems at Fosway Group, Europe’s #1 HR industry analyst. She has worked in the learning technology market since 2000, gaining a wealth of experience by either selling, implementing or managing learning solutions in a corporate context.

Terms such as LMS, NGLE and LXP are confusing for corporate buyers. The definitions aren’t clear and it’s hard to differentiate between the different types of technologies. That’s why in the February 2020 Learning Systems 9-Grid™, Fosway took the bold decision to reclassify Learning Systems as Suites and Specialists with the aim of more clearly and accurately defining the market. Organisations have always had a learning ecosystem of platforms and tools but the acceleration to digital-first ways of working and hybrid working require the ecosystem to be optimised to deliver impact and value.

 

This blog will explain the reasons why:

  • The new classification is more reflective of the current learning systems market
  • The ecosystem concept of combining suites and specialists is the way forward
  • The connectivity of the ecosystem and circulation of data is more important than ever before
Team talking about Learning Ecosystem

LMS & LXP labels no longer reflect the current learning systems market

Market perception is that the LMS represents traditional ‘tick-box’ compliance and ‘click-next’ content. A new label (LXP) encouraged the market to look to a fresh new future. However, over recent years the lines between the two types of system have blurred and those vendors who thought that formal learning and LMS functionality could be ignored were mistaken. This is true, particularly in the mid-market, where buyers can neither afford nor justify the purchase of more than one learning system. As the market now both accepts and adjusts to the Fosway classification of Suites and Specialists, some vendors have re-evaluated their target positioning and where they fit in the corporate ecosystem. Some specialists have prioritised innovation over backfilling core learning management functionality, often preferring to partner with other Suites instead. Suites have added LXP capability, whatever they perceive that to be.

The ecosystem concept of combining suites and specialists is the way forward

Learning technology has always been an ecosystem with many components, including the Learning Systems (LS), sources of HR data, virtual classrooms, authoring tools, learning content and other resources. Seamless integration has often been an issue, many corporates choosing not to tackle the problem, leaving them as separate, stand-alone technologies and making a single source of truth for data an unreachable goal. This is no longer a viable option even for learning at the mid-market level. However, even more integrations are required as an organisation gets larger, more complex and their core LS does not deliver the depth of functionality in specific areas. So, platforms with specialisms such as training resource management, curation, extended enterprise or programmatic learning might be added to the learning ecosystem.

 

However, the ecosystem is expanding beyond learning, connecting with the HR System(s) for the learner’s profile has always been a priority but now the lines are also blurring between communication, learning, performance and talent. It’s all about the data flow and the term we use to describe the ability to do this well is ‘Ecosystem-ness’. Vendors will rightly say that APIs solve this problem, but building integrations require integrators, i.e. developers and other experienced people to build and maintain them. In a complex company, that is expensive and non-trivial. In smaller companies it is impossible as they lack the resources and budgets to develop their own integrations. The more that Ecosystem-ness is of the out-of-the-box, the better off all buyers will be.

Business man doiang a training in the office

To deliver value & impact requires ecosystem connectivity and circulation of data

The ecosystem provides the opportunity to deliver a new level of learning impact. Take this scenario for example: an employee is recruited because of their existing skills which are noted, their learning through the onboarding process takes care of the gaps and time-to-value in the new role is measured. Successful performance is demonstrated and rewarded during the delivery of internal or external projects. Awareness of new opportunities for further development and upskilling are at the learner’s fingertips along with collaborative assignments or individual coaching. The manager has access to their team’s progress to ensure intervention is possible when necessary. The organisation can recognise the skills gaps across the whole organisation and initiate reskilling for competitive advantage and growth. Learning is at the centre of this and at every stage!

 

But none of this is possible in an effective efficient way without all the various HR, talent and learning system suites and specialists being integrated to ensure the data flows unimpeded. Which is why the ability for a vendor to demonstrate ecosystem-ness is crucial.

 

And if all this can take place behind the scenes, mostly hidden from view and the employee has access to everything wherever they are working on a day-to-day basis then we’ve cracked it!

 

Find out more about the Fosway 9-Grid™ for Learning Systems and read the full report here  and you can contact Fiona via @fionaleteney or @fosway on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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