4 Ways To Make Performance Management Easier With Learning Technology

4 Ways To Make Performance Management Easier With Learning Technology
Summary: Performance management is about more than numbers on a spreadsheet. Behind those numbers are real people with real needs and real superpowers that can help your business go further!

Making Performance Management Easier With Learning Technology

When you think about performance management in an organization, it’s easy to see it as an abstract concept. On the surface, it looks like a spreadsheet full of green numbers that you can ignore and red numbers that keep you awake at night. I suggest you take a break from looking at your screen and think about what performance management really means.

A car won’t run with faulty components. An orchestra will sound a little off if only one of the musicians is out of tune. A cake won’t taste like a cake anymore if one of the chocolate chips turns out to be… something else. Your organization works the same way. If you want to get the best out of it, you need to look at the people within it.

If you give your employees the skills they need, they’ll be able to do their jobs better. It goes deeper than that, however. If you show them that you’re willing to invest in their training, they’ll be willing to give back. All you need to do is unlock their potential, and the key lies with the training department.

If you have the right Learning Management System in place, your performance management nightmares can become a thing of the past. Here are just a few tools your training managers can use to tune the engine that drives your business forward.

1. Gamification

A lot of people hear the word ‘training’ and remember some mind-numbing eLearning unit they were forced to go through. Nobody will spend any more time than they need to on your training platform if it doesn’t engage them. The first step to a better performance management strategy is to get bums on seats!

Gamification is a powerful tool that’s been a lifesaver for many organizations. Research by the Aberdeen Group discovered organizations who deploy gamification improve engagement by 48% and turnover by 36%. Those aren’t small numbers. You can also use game mechanics to make the performance management experience more appealing.

First, your learners can earn points and badges for consecutive logins. Once they’re on the platform, they can earn further achievements for simply navigating the system. You’ve already got their attention and you haven’t even started tracking their performance!

With the right performance management add-ons on your LMS, your employees can keep track of their own KPIs and Objectives. If the LMS is gamified, it gets even better. They’ll be able to see how far they’ve come that week just by looking at their dashboard.

2. Social

Communication is a massive element of performance. Once employees know what they need to do, they’ve a better chance of getting it done. In the same way, if they can share their achievements, everybody else can see how far those organizational goals have come.

Social functionality is an absolute must for today’s learning platforms. It’s not just a better way of doing business, it’s what learners of the digital age expect. It can let you do a whole lot more than just share knowledge with your peers. Managers can comment on their learners’ KPIs, ask for clarification, or make recommendations.

Managing performance then becomes a collaborative exercise that gives employees the sense that they are contributing to the overall strategy. It needn’t stop with individuals either. The same functionality can be used to track and share team performance, and even the performance of the entire organization.

3. Personalization

Going back to my orchestra analogy, if one of the instruments is out of tune, it’d be crazy to retune all of them. Training works in the same way. It might be easier for you to apply the exact same training to everyone in the business, but not everyone has the same needs. Adapting the training to each learner is a much more effective method.

This is a great way to align the training with performance management. Managers can use the performance management tools to push training content that fits with the individual’s needs. If sales person needs to improve their product knowledge before they can be given more responsibilities, the manager can add the appropriate content to the employee’s to-do list with the click of a mouse.

It’s also a good idea to give the learners an area where they can showcase their work achievements. With a personalized profile area, they can build a portfolio showing their contribution. This helps managers put them in the roles where their competencies can have the greatest impact.

4. Epic Meaning

Performance isn’t just ticking off tasks on a to-do list. The employees can only perform to the maximum if they understand why they’re doing it. The learning platform needs to be flexible enough to let you white label it for your organization. Little things like your brand and tone-of-voice make a big difference. They stem from the vision and values that define your business and they need to be reinforced at every opportunity.

A performance management suite gives the managers more control over the goals of the individual. When these goals are aligned with those of the organization, everyone is moving in the same direction according to the company’s vision. Useful though that is, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the employees understand that vision.

Gamification comes to the rescue once again! As well as letting the learners track their KPIs, they can also earn awards for demonstrating the values of the business. If they go that step beyond the call of duty, their manager can award a badge indicating as much. These special achievements add up and give a clearer idea of how well the employees understand the mission of the organization. At worst, it shows where the improvements need to be made, but at best, it justifies everything the learning department has done to improve performance.

Final Words

Once you start to see performance in a more human light, you’ll have a better chance of improving it. It’ll let you handle the administrative parts – like tracking objectives – but it gives you a better understanding of the people behind the numbers. If you understand how you can help them succeed, they will be more willing to help your business succeed. As soon as everybody is singing from the same sheet, you can make beautiful music together!

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