The last decade has seen technology rapidly advance both at home and in the workplace. Since 2008 we’ve seen innovation such as e-readers and tablets, augmented reality, electric cars, 3D scanning & printers and cloud computing all enter mainstream use. So fast and wide-reaching are the advances that ‘disruptor’ has become a popular buzzword in recent years. A quick online search of the word will bring back a myriad of articles discussing the latest ‘tech disruptors’ to one industry or the next.
One area where technology is driving the revolution is in learning. Arduous day-long training courses and seminars have been replaced by interactive videos, easily digestible micro-content and engaging online courses that can be accessed almost anywhere. Thanks to the ongoing development of technology, businesses today can train their staff in a more efficient and effective way, unburdened by geography.
But how has tech changed learning, and how does this relate to business owners? What’s the future of workplace learning and how can managers use this to stay ahead of the curve?
One agency that has embraced the tech revolution is London-based digital learning agency Insitu Digital. The company designs learning programmes from the ground up, and for years have supported industry giants within the complex world of medical devices and healthcare. With over fifteen years’ experience, they’re well placed to comment on the impact tech has had, and how this will transform the way managers train their staff, and themselves for years to come.
One of the major advances technology has brought to the learning industry is ease of access. This has meant that rather than attending time-consuming all-day courses, learners can progress through their programme at a time and place and on a device that matches their schedule.
Founder of Insitu Digital, Paul Newman said ease of access was at the cornerstone of the learning revolution: “Old systems of learning were very cumbersome and made any process within a company slow and arduous.
“Cloud computing platforms are now essential for daily working and are making business more agile and lightweight. Thanks to modern tech, we now have access to a universal source of learning anywhere, at any time meaning learners can use their pockets of time more efficiently.
“From dedicating an hour a day on the office PC, to grabbing fifteen minutes of content on a tablet before going to the beach when on holiday - less time is wasted and more is absorbed through the ease of access. Learners are already working like this without realising it. Have you ever searched a long PDF for a single paragraph on a specific topic? That’s an example of non-linear learning; using a modern search function to grab the knowledge you need from a swath of text, that might take an hour to read in its entirety.
“This particularly complements modern approaches to learning such as atomising content, where larger topics are broken down into smaller more easily completed modules. Think of all the content that stands out on the platforms you engage with like YouTube, LinkedIn, Reddit or Facebook, it’s the easily accessed, easily digested content that resonates with people.
“No-one really wants to watch a sixty-minute video on managing risk when searching for a particular point of information. But it becomes much more attractive if that 60 minutes is broken down into more focused and engaging individual clips. When content is easier to consume and consists of the specialist information you need to know, you turn engagement into inspired learning - and it’s there that expert knowledge can shine, through the efficiency of modern technology.”