3 Questions To Ask For Selecting The Right Learning Technology
SFIO CRACHO/Shutterstock.com

Selecting The Right Learning Technology: Should You Be Running Out And Buying One Of Each?

Ooh, look! New and shiny objects! It certainly sounds appealing to add a few new tools to the arsenal. After all, this is what the learners want! But before you run out and invest in one of these new shiny objects, consider that only 37% of training is applied on the job even after it's gamified, videoed, and socialized. Let’s see what kind of questions you should ask in order to select the right learning tools for your needs:

Free eBook: Selecting The Right Learning Technology For Your Needs
Reading this eBook, will help you decide if you truly need the investment to a new learning tool.

1. What Step(s) In An Individual’s Learning Journey Will This Tool Support?

Improving performance on the job is rarely achieved with a single intervention. When architecting a learning solution, we need to think about 6 key steps in the journey to change:

  1. Engage.
  2. Diagnose.
  3. Learn.
  4. Apply.
  5. Assess.
  6. Reinforce.

For each learning solution, we ask a series of questions about each step and determine if some steps need more emphasis than others.

When deciding on the new technologies or learning approaches to use, it’s important to have this same flexibility. Adopting microlearning and then treating it like a hammer for every nail isn’t going to work. You need to be purpose-driven in picking those new tools and approaches. Consider which of the steps on the 6-step learning journey your new tool will support and whether that step is important for your context and initiatives.

2. What New Technology Will You Need, And How Will It Integrate With The Rest Of Your Infrastructure?

Many of the new tools being introduced today are offered through a Software as a Service model (SaaS). A SaaS approach means that the company who provides the technology has one version of it that all of their clients access through the cloud. SaaS models are not hosted on your own servers and maintained by your IT department; instead, you rely on the SaaS company to do all of that for you. This may mean some new ways of working for your organization:

Learners may now have to log in to multiple systems (or you may have to implement Single Sign On (SSO) in order to create a more streamlined access process for people to access all these different tools).

You may need to engage your IT team in a different way than you have in the past.

Data will now be in multiple places and not all housed in your LMS. This may require a new approach to compiling data and reporting back on it.

In adding to your tool library, you will be incurring costs that you may not have had to shell out in the past. Learning and Development has traditionally been seen as a cost center. Your challenge will be to demonstrate how these tools can and will drive performance improvement through verifiable results and metrics. Your goal is to turn L&D into a profit center.

3. What Skills And Resources Will You Need To Succeed?

While you may be challenged with the implementation of these technologies, you may also find that your L&D team doesn’t have the skills a particular new solution demands.

Let’s say you determine that a virtual role-play platform will help your Sales team build their skills and is critical to your team’s success (a pretty good idea!). Do you have a videographer on your team or the budget to hire one? Is your team ready to script compelling scenarios that strike the right tone?

Before you put one of these new solutions in place, be sure you’ve taken the time to consider the big picture in terms of your people and their skills. And then take the appropriate steps to put your team in the position to succeed, through training or new hires or budget readiness.

If you want to know more about finding the best learning technology, download the free eBook Selecting The Right Learning Technology For Your Needs.

Related Articles:

  1. Free eBook: Selecting The Right Learning Technology For Your Needs
  2. 4 New Solution Categories To Consider When Selecting The Right Learning Technology
Close