5 Ways To Make Mobile Learning A Reality

5 Ways To Make Mobile Learning A Reality
Summary: Mobile learning has evolved from a nice-to-have perk to a must-have tool in the L&D toolkit to attract and retain the skilled workforce needed in 2020 and beyond. Whether you're starting from scratch or looking to modernize, here are 5 keys to designing the mobile learning your people crave.

Keys To Effective Mobile Learning In 2020

In 2020, mobile learning continues to grow in popularity at companies across the globe. As the workforce continues to leave the desk and the 9-5 schedule behind, its ability to receive Learning and Development in the traditional fashion is rapidly diminishing. And yet, as numerous reports have shown, the need for continuous learning and upskilling is growing. Mobile learning solves these modern learning challenges by delivering mission-critical knowledge where and when it works best for employees.

But what does a company need to do to ensure that its mobile learning efforts pay off, both for the organization and the employees? A one-size solution doesn’t necessarily fit all; it’s important to keep the following best practices in mind as mobile learning programs are developed, rolled out, and assessed.

1. Stay Simple

Organizations that expect employees to utilize mobile learning opportunities will have the best results when content and design are easy to understand and follow. A clean and uncluttered look and concise content allow employees to find what they need when they need it. This approach also has the benefit of making it easier for users to retain what they’ve learned: information is easily retained and recalled when presented in chunks and dripped out over time.

Microlearning is an excellent tool for delivering on this need. Deeper soft-skill concepts such as adaptability, creativity, and inclusion—all in high demand in 2020—are more easily attained and retained when they’re broken down into approachable, practical micro-lessons.

2. Be Engaging

The mobile learning process must be fun and worthwhile for your employees to be successful. Consider this: when it comes to professional soft-skills development, most people don’t know what they don’t know. People aren’t aware of their own biases. They don’t realize they aren’t effective communicators. They don’t feel like they’re not self-aware. So they’re not actively seeking out learning around these topics. It’s human nature! Your mobile learning must draw your people in with engaging, relevant, and visual content that makes sense to their world.

Once you’ve your engaging content, you can motivate learners to reach for it through social learning functionality. Foster a sense of friendly competition through leaderboards and recognize personal bests or accomplishments in your early adopters. Carefully, curate content that’s responsive to user performance and guides employees on learning pathways that keep folks coming back for more.

3. Make It On-Demand

In addition to pushing learning out to your people via email, LMS, etc., make needed information instantly accessible through easily searchable libraries within your mobile learning environment. When the learning is available at any time, you can be there for your learners at their point of need. With on-demand mobile learning, your people can brush up before a big presentation, grab helpful talking points for a performance feedback session, or feel more confident interacting with a new team member who is differently-abled.

The on-demand aspect of mobile learning also supports employees who are crunched for time. It simplifies access, whether that’s an urgent need or a way to fill a few minutes of downtime during a shift. This method can also better serve employees who work alternative hours or are geographically dispersed.

4. Invite Everyone

Focus on inclusivity with your mobile learning. Don’t risk alienating employees by assuming their usage and content preferences (especially by generation); this can decrease engagement and motivation. Some folks learn best in text environments while others retain better when the material is presented in a visual style. Mix it up with podcasts, videos, quizzes, stories, and more.

Think of mobile learning like a buffet: if several kinds of dishes are available, nearly everyone will find one they enjoy and return for seconds. By developing solutions that are not device-dependent, everyone can use their own, ensuring minimal friction with the technology used to access and complete learning modules.

5. Think Smaller

The value of mobile learning is that it is accessible any time and allows learners to dive into content wherever they are: at home, on the train, even when grabbing a quick lunch at the park. Your mobile learning must be bite-sized and consumable within those brief time periods. Microlearning—lessons developed to be consumed in about ten minutes—are ideal for this.

This doesn’t mean grab your long-form content and chop it up into smaller segments. Each micro-lesson should have a beginning, middle, and end, and should feel like it serves its own separate purpose. Larger concepts should be broken down into smaller servings. For example, the theme of inclusion is made up of scores of smaller topics, from microaggressions to cultural competence to allyship, and so much more. These microlearning lessons are valuable when consumed individually but together make up a learning journey that, thanks to your mobile learning environment, your people can engage with more easily and effectively.

Mobile learning, when designed and delivered well, can be extremely helpful in reaching and upskilling today’s workforce. Following these 5 steps will help you achieve the mobile learning offering your people crave.

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