Five Golden Rules for Mobile Learning which really shift performance

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Over the last few months we have met with a number of organizations at various stages in their mobile learning journey. We have learnt a lot from these conversations and wanted to share with you a few guidelines which we feel could help you to develop a mobile learning strategy that really shifts performance and provides a lasting impact.

  1. Start with the end goal in mind – What do you want to achieve?

    Firstly, what are you looking to achieve with your digital learning solutions?

    • Tracking your learners completion of learning content
    • Delivering blended and relevant content
    • WOWing your learners with look and feel of the content
    • Ensuring your learners are meeting compliance standards
    • Getting learners to practice and get feedback
    • Evaluating how well learners can apply their knowledge
    • Linking the learning to impact on performance
    • Engaging your learners in their journey….

      Then, How well do our systems deliver against these objectives?

      From our experience, organizations often have legacy systems that have been brought in for good reasons at the time. However, expectations and objectives change as do the digital solutions which are available.

      Often when we look at a new system we ask ‘how can this fit with our current systems’?

      Now this is an understandable question, having invested money and time in this technology. However, try to start with the end goal in mind and identify what is really missing?

  1. Research and explore – What is out there?

    Once you have found gaps, then get curious and research the market. The market has a variety of interesting platforms which do a lot more than just track learners through programs.

    We recommend visiting websites like Capterra which share a variety of solutions, . You could also use a mobile learning checklist to help you qualify each solution, here is one that you might find useful.

    For example, one important criteria might be to have a system that is more flexible and can link to other platforms.

  2. Apply the learning through practice and feedback

    Our third golden rule is driven by the self-evident premise that learning changes performance when effective practice, feedback and coaching occurs in the workplace.

    We have known this for years, but many organizations still find it difficult to make it happen. However, with the assistance of new mobile digital platforms, it has never been easier.

    You can create activities which ask peers or managers to provide feedback in a personalized closed and trusted community – a performance hub. This feedback process can even be structured and guided, helping your leaders provide more accuracy and consistency in their assessment.

Feedback can be online or face to face – here is the seemingly contradictory aspect of digital learning solutions:

You can use learning technology to encourage more human interactions – rather than replacing human interactions with technology

…. the mobile learning paradox perhaps?

  1. Track the learning activities which impact performance

    These days data is readily available, however visibility of meaningful data can drive engagement. As with Golden Rule 1, you firstly must decide what you are looking to impact upon.

    Is it just a learning content tick box exercise or is it about shifting performance? If it is the latter, then the measures should be on those areas which drive application of knowledge. For example, these may be the timely and quality of feedback and coaching from the most relevant people – trainers, mentors or coaches.

    The reporting could then link the progress of the learner through content, via the application of learning to the subsequent results in the workplace.

  1. Have more control and flexibility with your learning

    The revolution of mlearning has meant that there are now “DIY” platforms on the market. This means that you can build your own programs and learning content without instructional design or programming experience. Many businesses, both large and small have found this beneficial.

    They have found it more cost effective to build their own programs, use their own content or other peoples’ content. If there is a change to their direction, products or pricing – they can respond quickly and locally at the touch of a button.

    Some clients have expressed their frustrations at being tied into one platform over a long term. Why not consider looking at platforms which are open to linking in to other expert platforms and content. Often there is no one perfect platform that ticks all the boxes. Instead of compromising, look at your objectives and identify the best fit.

    For example, you could try a platform which links to social learning, assessment/testing and reporting. The key is to be agile and have room to change approaches to impact learning effectiveness and subsequently performance.

We hope our suggestions provide food for thought and help you to reach a solution which works for you and your organization.

If you are in the research phase or would like to discuss your learning challenges – feel free to get in contact, we are happy to help. 


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