LAS is an award-winning provider of elearning consultancy, design, development and training services in the UK and internationally.
Established in 2005 as LearningAge Solutions, we work with some of the best known organisations in the world to boost their performance through the innovative use of learning technologies. Working in partnership with our customers, we draw on proven principles from human behaviour, how people learn and how the brain works to create impactful digital learning solutions with real return on investment.
Tess is a director of LAS. She has worked in a learning environment for over fifteen years. First, as a senior manager in universities, moving into digital learning seven years ago.
By Tess Robinson
Posted 2 March 2018
For so many years now I have read the annual Towards Maturity Benchmark report with a sense of impending gloom. Nothing ever seemed to change despite overwhelming evidence that effective use of technology in learning can make such a massive difference to employee engagement, efficiency, performance, ability etc.. etc.. That’s why this year I am so pleased to see TM take a different approach.
Their Transformation Curve plots out a journey by helping organisations to identify where they are currently at, exploring the successes and limitations at each stage, why it’s time to move on and how you move to the next stage. At each stage they highlight things to ‘let go of’ so that you can progress. They have tried not to be too prescriptive about how to move to the next stage, but I can’t help feeling that giving a set of questions for people to consider or two or three steps they could take at each pivot point would be a useful addition.
It’s still the case that far too many organisations are still at the lower end of the curve, but instead of leaving organisations to just languish there, saying that they want to improve but making no progress, this model gives legs to the ambition to move on. What it does particularly well is make each stage feel like a natural progression rather than a hurdle to get over, making the integration of technology into learning feel less scary. In fact, as you move through the levels it’s much less about the technology itself and more about people, culture and communication. Being digitally enabled is so embedded into the fabric of the organisation that it ceases to be a ‘thing’ and instead is just an integral part of how everything functions.
This mirrors the wider concept of digital transformation. Digital is becoming an integral part of how organisations function. It can be defined in a (surprisingly wide) number of ways, but essentially it is the integration of digital technology into all areas of a business resulting in fundamental changes to how businesses operate and how they deliver value to customers. Beyond that, it's a cultural change that requires organisations to continually challenge the status quo, experiment often, and become comfortable with failure. This focus on agility is essential to remain competitive in an ever-changing world. Leveraging technology to, for example, improve the customer experience, streamline internal processes or encourage collaboration is no longer a nice-to-have but essential to an organisation’s survival. The same goes for using technology for learning. Interestingly, the attributes of a modern learner that the report describes; purposeful, curious, sociable, confident, proactive and flexible are exactly what is needed, not just in relation to learning but for the organisation as a whole to be able to embrace all aspects of digital and become a ‘competitive, agile 21st century business’.