How To Conduct A Successful Task Analysis For Corporate eLearning
A task analysis takes an in depth look at how a specific process or procedure is carried on, including each of the steps and actions involved. This may pertain to the frequency and duration of the task, as well as the mental processes that take place throughout the task and the tools that are required to complete it successfully. The information gathered from the task analysis can help eLearning professionals and employers identify performance objectives and develop an effective online training strategy for their employees. It can also give them the opportunity to discover which skills and abilities are necessary for the task.
- Research every aspect of a typical work day.
Before you can analyze the task itself, you must first identify which tasks the employee carries out during a typical work day. It’s often a good idea to shadow the individual to get a true sense of their job responsibilities. However, if that is not possible you might consider conducting interviews or surveys that narrow down the list of tasks you’ll be focusing on. You should also have a discussion with the team leaders to figure out which tasks are crucial or have room for improvement. Ask them to describe exactly what the task entails and who is expected to complete the task on a regular basis.
- Identify all of the steps involved, as well as the desired outcome.
After collecting information about the tasks, it’s time to break them down to their basic components. Figure out how much time the task will take, as well as each of the steps involved in the process. You should also identify the expected outcome for every step and the overall task. This will help you to create an online training plan that is more effective, as corporate learners will be able to focus on each key step before moving onto the next aspect of the task.
- Concentrate on the individual actions for each step.
You may have to take the task breakdown a bit further by identifying the individual actions that must be carried out for each step. Make a detailed list of every action that the employee must fulfill in order to complete the specific step. The key here is to not go overboard, however. You do not need to outline each and every movement that the employee must make during the process, as this will only over complicate matters. Just concentrate on the major steps that are integral to the task completion.
- Consider all of the skills and information involved in the task.
In addition to the actions, you should also determine which skills and key knowledge the employees must know beforehand. For example, if they do not have any computer skills then they will need to develop that skill set before they can complete a sales transaction on the POS system. Carefully assess every element of the task and create a list of any and all skills, ideas, and core knowledge the employee must acquire in order to successfully complete the process. If necessary, use quizzes and exams to gauge their level of proficiency in these key areas, which will also help you identify if further online training exercises may be required.
- Be as clear and concise as possible.
When you are creating the online training content after conducting a thorough task analysis, you should focus on simplicity and clarity. Keep in mind that some corporate learners may not have a firm grasp on the basics behind the task. For example, certain employees might need more help when it comes to skill mastery or knowledge comprehension. In some cases you may also be working with employees who have English as a second language, which means that you will want to use more basic terminology and minimal jargon. This is one of the primary reasons why it’s ideal to research your target audience before your task analysis. It gives you a clear idea of what they need to know, their background, and their experience level. Above all else, do not simply assume that all of your employees are familiar with the process. Tell them how to carry out each action in great detail, and don’t leave anything to their imagination.
- Determine the best delivery method for the task online training.
One of the last steps in your task analysis should be figuring out HOW you are going to convey the information to your corporate learners. Are you going to frame it with an online scenario or simulation? Would the employees benefit from a text-based tutorial that walks them through the procedure? Do you need refresher online training courses every now and then, or is this a one-time online course? In some instances you may even wish to create on-the-job manuals and aids that employees can use to brush up on their task mastery. Discovering the ideal LMS platform is also essential. Will you opt for a mobile-friendly course that employees can access anywhere, or will there be a computer-based module that they’ll complete during their online training?
Conducting a task analysis can give you the opportunity to identify the skills and knowledge that your corporate learners need to know to master every step in the process. You can use these 6 tips to create online scenarios, tutorials, and simulations that get results, instead of guessing at what your corporate learners do on a daily basis.
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