Build a Sustainable and Scalable Digital Learning Strategy in 5 Steps
Gartner recently forecasted a record-breaking increase in worldwide IT spending that may reach $4.5 trillion in 2023. With the rise of technology and the need for continuous learning, companies must stay ahead to ensure their people can cope with the changes in their work that technology demands.
When organizations don’t value learning, people get frustrated and quit. For example, 93% of employees claim they would stay with a company longer if it invests in their learning, according to LinkedIn’s 2023 Workplace Learning Report.
A learning strategy is an essential component of a digital transformation. It keeps your team educated and your workspace ahead of the curve. It also gives your new employees the best possible start.
What is Digital Learning?
Digital learning refers to the use of technology to deliver education. Digital learning brings education to where employees are. The learning materials are online and accessible anytime; people can learn at their own pace.
Digital learning is flexible, personalized, and scalable, making learning fun!
With the help of online resources such as videos, online courses, webinars, immersive experiences, and other digital resources, companies can personalize their people’s learning experiences as they can gain the knowledge and skills they need to work efficiently.
Why Do You Need a Digital Learning Strategy?
With a well-crafted digital learning strategy, you can empower people at your organization to commit to their job and do it better. Defining a strategy is key to delivering learning experiences that cater to the individual needs of people in the company.
Here are some key reasons why investing in digital learning is critical for your organization:
- Standardization: Digital learning provides a consistent experience for people in your organization. The content is well organized and standardized, increasing training quality.
- Cost: Traditional in-person and travel training methods can be costly. Digital learning, on the other hand, eliminates the need for travel and can be more cost-effective in the long run.
- Engagement: Digital learning can be designed to be interactive and engaging, making it fun and effective! This, in turn, leads to higher retention rates and improved performance.
- Scalability: With digital learning, you can easily scale your training to meet the needs of your growing workforce without the constraints of physical space or time.
Build a Learning Strategy in 5 Steps:
Now that we’ve covered why a learning strategy is important, let’s dive into the five essential steps in building a successful learning strategy.
The five steps are assessment, strategy, development, delivery, and nurturing.
1. Assessment: Evaluating Your Organization’s Learning Needs
The assessment phase involves evaluating your organization’s learning needs and identifying the gaps in knowledge and skills that need to be addressed.
This phase provides insights into your starting point: This phase provides insights into your starting point: the organization’s learning objectives, the learners’ needs, and the overall context in which the digital learning program will operate.
In the assessment phase, you can use various techniques such as surveys, focus groups, and stakeholder interviews to gather information on the organization’s current state.
Next, analyze the information you’ve gathered and use it to define the learning strategy.
2. Strategy: Designing a Digital Learning Strategy for Transformation
Your assessment gives you a basis for a solid learning strategy that aligns with your organization’s current state and objectives. A well-defined learning strategy should outline the following:
- The Learning Curriculum
The learning curriculum is the structure of your learning program. In this phase, you must decide how to structure the content: by role, function, department, or system.
By breaking down the program and defining a learning curriculum, you can develop tailored learning experiences that align with your people’s specific learning needs.
- The Learning Components
The learning components should outline the topics, learning objectives, and methods to deliver the content.
By incorporating various delivery methods, such as videos, webinars, online modules, and in-person workshops, you can appeal to different learning styles and preferences.
At Share PLM, we recommend a blended learning approach. Blended learning includes eLearning and teacher-led training. Blended learning works best because learners can engage with the content at their own pace and according to their schedule while benefiting from the “human touch” and in-person feedback and guidance from instructors or peers.
- The Learning Journey
The learning journey maps the different phases a learner goes through. It defines each program stage’s learning goals, milestones, and expected outcomes.
The learning journey should detail how learners will progress through the content and what support they will receive. It also includes the learning components you’ll offer at each phase, the delivery methods, and the metrics you’ll use to measure success.
- The Development Plan
Once you’re clear about the content, it’s time to plan. However, developing content for a digital learning program requires careful planning and organization.
Map out the content that needs to be updated, improved, or created from scratch to achieve the learning objectives. Break it down into manageable chunks.
Determine the format for each piece of content. For example, will it be a video? An interactive module? A quiz? Assign responsibilities for creating and reviewing each component.
Next, using the available resources and budget, develop a timeline for content development.
3. Development: Craft Engaging Learning Experiences that Empower Learners
The development phase is where the content is brought to life. During this phase, the content and learning materials are created, refined, and tested to ensure they align with the program’s learning objectives and meet the target audience’s needs.
We recommend combining various instructional design techniques and technologies to create impactful experiences that resonate with learners. Visual elements, storytelling, and real-life scenarios can make the learning experience fun and impactful. They can help people retain knowledge and apply it in real-world situations.
4. Delivery: Provide Impactful Learning Experiences
This phase involves delivering learning experiences that engage learners and enables them to achieve their learning objectives.
The key to delivering impactful learning experiences is to plan well and measure results. We recommend creating and maintaining a calendar, a knowledge base, and tracking data to get feedback.
5. Nurturing: Cultivating a Culture of Lifelong Learning
The final phase of a digital learning program is nurturing, which involves cultivating a culture of lifelong learning within your organization. Nurturing involves creating opportunities for learners to continue their education beyond the digital learning program and to develop their skills and knowledge on an ongoing basis.
Creating a supportive and collaborative learning environment that encourages participation and engagement is key to enabling change. This can be achieved through various techniques such as coaching, communication, social learning, and continuing education programs. These programs can help people apply what they’ve learned to their jobs and continue to develop their skills and knowledge.
Investing in Digital Learning: The Key to Successful Digital Transformation
By following these five steps, you can create a comprehensive learning strategy tailored to your organization’s needs and goals.
At Share PLM, we believe people are at the core of any digital transformation. Digital learning can drive change, and organizations can achieve their digital transformation goals through effective change enablement and learning programs.
Our team of experts has years of experience in helping companies like yours navigate the challenges of digital transformation. We’d love to help you, too!
Want to learn more? Contact us at Share PLM. Let’s discuss your specific challenges and how you can unlock your organization’s full potential.