It’s easy to get lost these days in all of the choices that exist around learning options and technology. This can be especially true at a conference like the one we just attended, ASTD’s Techknowledge 2012, where the choices were abundant and almost overwhelming. Mobile learning, just-in-time, social media, blogging and micro blogging just to name a few. Furthermore, as learning and development professionals we have to ensure that we are embracing the different learning styles and expectations of the new workforce. It is clear we can’t stand still or continue to do things the way we have always done them.
Today’s learning leaders are increasingly tasked to find new, better and less expensive ways to train and to accommodate the growing number of new, mobile and remote workforce learners. Given our experiences with customers around the globe, we have seen that for many organizations the move to virtual has been overwhelmingly driven by the obvious cost and time savings of this modality. At the same time virtual training is often viewed as inferior or not being able to offer the type of results associated with more traditional training approaches. This is not because web-based training is an inferior training modality; it is because it has not been widely-used in an effective and compelling manner. As leaders responsible for the results of their training initiatives, is this the ROI that we are willing to live with OR is there a better way?
Top concerns that emerged during the recent were:
- What does it take to deliver a virtual classroom experience so that it is more than a traditional webinar?
- How can we create engagement in virtual classroom experiences?
- How to create a blended experience and leverage assets that companies have already invested in?
- Change management: what is needed in terms of an overall program to gain adoption, apply learning and change behavior?
To gain the true impact of any training program the answer to a strong ROI lies in the overall organizational learning strategy and in the architectural footprint of the learning environment and NOT in tactical implementation, training technology or clever instructional design. Of course, these elements do matter but they are secondary to strategy and architectural design. The strategy must consider the business impact that is required and then map the change management, skills, and behavior requirements necessary to enable the organization to deliver those results. The architectural design must then accommodate who needs training and the most effective modes in which to deliver, or enable, the requisite learning to occur.
So where does live virtual training fit in? With the learning strategy and architecture serving as the foundation, learning and development leaders can ensure that the most effective modalities are employed to support the organizational learning needs by providing the right training to the right people at the right time. With an emphasis on supporting the workforce in the way in which we now live and work, live virtual is worth a strong hard look for how this modality can truly transform the modern-day learning experience.
Come join us at Training 2012 and hear more about a Best-In-Practice Design to Live Virtual Training. Find out more about the event on our website.