In this post we’re taking a look at the top eLearning trends of 2017, based on what our customers are asking for. In this and previous years, many voices in the world of online training have predicted a rise in Virtual Reality as a learning tool. But the reality may be that virtually every company in the world can’t afford to develop something as ambitious as VR training!
Our eLearning & LMS boffins have spoken to 100’s of customers and companies in 2017, across industries such as Hospitality, Health, Travel, Waste Management and Construction. So today we’re sharing the biggest eLearning trends of 2017 based on what we are asked for and would recommend to clients on a daily basis.
Here’s what Compliance, HR and Learning & Development departments are using for their training needs so far this year.
8 Top eLearning Trends of 2017
1) Video courses
Customers are increasingly interested in video courses to train and educate staff. This comes as no surprise with video estimated to account for 80% of global internet traffic by 2019. If 80% of all content on websites, social media posts, and blogs will be experienced as video… the 20% left may all be emoji’s 😊 ☹ 😉
As more learners access employer training on mobile devices, video is an ideal delivery method for training and education. Small mobile screens adapt better to video than other forms of technology such as html.
We have also seen a rise in employees uploading videos in work based situations, for line managers to provide feedback on as part of their training course.
2) Face to Face in combination with eLearning courses
Using eLearning during face to face training adds variety and helps keep your audience engaged. Something like game-show style eLearning involving multiple trainees is excellent for those after lunch or late Friday sessions.
Talking about eLearning during face to face sessions also helps promote it within your organisation and increases usage after in-person training courses.
Plus, it’s ideal to show trainees where to access follow-up assessments, explain how online assessments help you identify training needs and how they enable you to develop personalised training plans.
3) Giving employees the choice on how they would like to learn.
Employers are starting to adopt a “pick and mix” approach when it comes to delivering employee training. They realise how easy it is to offer training in multiple formats.
Many of our customers now deliver their core training courses in three formats, allowing employees to learn in the best environment for them by choosing between;
- Face to Face training
- Video eLearning courses
- Interactive online courses
Our clients are reaping the benefits of giving employees choice in how they receive training, improving the experience and their retention of knowledge.
With a good Learning Management System, it is still easy for training managers to track and report on completion of training from a variety of sources. Employees can be signed off as competent and compliant whether they learn via video courses, interactive eLearning courses or face to face training.
Micro-learning is one often mentioned trend that seems to be much more than a fad. All our clients are asking how they can deliver training in bite-sized chunks, and encourage learners to come back time and time again.
When courses are small and learners are rewarded for their efforts, they not only complete more hours of training, but they remember more of it as well.
At eLamb we like to use leader boards, badges and create company-wide announcements congratulating each learner when they have achieve a milestone or complete training on certain topics.
5) Mobile learning
Around 70% of users access performance support or learning content from a mobile device. We can see that our business-to-consumer customers are investing the most in mobile. Companies are creating “How To” product guides for their teams that are being viewed predominantly from smartphone and tablet devices.
Staff are less likely to have access to computers for training purposes in industries such as Hospitality, Construction and Hair & Beauty. Instead they are able to access training from their personal devices, switching to a laptop or PC when they are available.
This behaviour will continue to grow as long as our obsession with smartphones continues, keeping user-driven learning at the forefront.
Having training content optimised for mobile devices is already a must-have rather than a nice-to-have.
6) Onboarding training & Content make-overs
More and more customers are asking for existing content to be given a “10 years younger” make-over, updating and adding to their offline training content for delivery as interactive eLearning courses.
The most common subject for this treatment is induction and onboarding training, with companies choosing to deliver their induction programmes as a blend of face to face and online training.
Asking a new employee to sit down and work their way through a boring induction manual is never the best way to welcome them to your business. And it’s unlikely to impress on them the important aspects of their new role.
With increasing pressures on line managers time and high turnover of staff in some industries, engaging video content and on-brand custom eLearning adds real value to staff training.
7) Direct access to experts
Clients based in multiple locations have been sharing the problem of learners who don’t have access to the subject matter experts in their organisations, during their training sessions or at other times.
Line managers may be responsible for ensuring staff complete training courses, but they may not be subject experts. Knowledge levels between managers and sites can vary too. This makes it harder to support learners properly when they have questions on a topic.
Our online courses now feature an “Ask the Expert” function as part of the LMS, so learners can communicate directly with the relevant in-house expert. This improves knowledge sharing and how effective your training is.
8) Instant feedback from learners
Customers are increasingly asking for learners to be able to rate their experience of online courses as they complete them.
Providing learner feedback functionality and collating test scores are reporting elements that allow learning managers to see which courses have been well received by their employees.
As well as being great information for our clients, we also use this information at eLamb to ensure learners are enjoying the courses we create!
eLearning Trends we haven’t seen demand for
1) Social Learning
Social Learning allows learners to interact in online groups or chat rooms and ask each other questions, to share experiences that help them learn.
We haven’t seen much demand from customers asking for this option yet. Perhaps it is a fad, or maybe it is better suited to learners who sit at a computer during the day and would get more benefit from instant chat.
2) Virtual Reality
This is probably the most talked about topic in eLearning industry trends, but as yet this isn’t something our customers are looking to adopt. It’s much more common for us to be asked to gamify an eLearning course. Gamification is great for engagement and turns eLearning into fun formats like a game-show quiz and other game styles.
We suspect VR is more suited to companies with very heavy training budgets, in an effort to reduce the number of human trainers and educators they rely on. Many of our customers prefer us to act as an HR partner, recommending a blend of face to face and online training.
Hopefully you enjoyed our round-up from the coalface of business eLearning trends in 2017! We appreciate training managers and learning development professionals often want to hear more about what others are doing in practice. If you would like to pick our experts’ brains on what eLearning is recommended for your organisation, we’re happy to discuss the best technology and solutions for you today.
You can talk to us about your training needs on 01325 734 885 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.