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.
About Tess Robinson
Tess is a director of LAS. She has worked in a learning environment for over twenty years. First, as a senior manager in universities, moving into digital learning ten years ago.
The top 5 things you can do today to make your learning future-ready
By Tess Robinson
Posted 26 January 2022
In our first LAS Insights ‘episode’ we sought to define L&D's part in helping the world recover from and live with Covid long-term. To do this, we investigated five ‘megatrends’ that impact work and learning - climate change, digitisation, population growth, life expectancy and urbanisation. Megatrends are global social, economic, technological or political trends that can only be disrupted by a large-scale global event - a meteor strike, nuclear war, earthquake or pandemic for example.
We investigated the pre-Covid trend of each megatrend and how the pandemic looks to be impacting it. Using this data we projected forward 3-5 years into the future to imagine what work is likely to be like. We then considered what Learning and Development (L&D) need to do to support their organisations in that likely future, before rewinding back to the present to identify what we should be doing NOW to prepare.
We’ve distilled this work into the top 5 actions you can take now, to prepare your learning for the future shape of work in a (hopefully) post-pandemic world:
1. Start designing learning provision that is increasingly flexible and 24/7, not anchored to a particular location, time or date. Flexible and 24/7 does not mean ‘entirely asynchronous’ - we’re not advocating content libraries as the whole answer here; there still need to be opportunities for real time interaction with other humans. We suggest making these interactions shorter, more frequent and at different times of the day.
2. Focus more on performance than learning. In the workplace; learning is a route to performance. Increasingly, as people are not having to be present physically in order to do some jobs, performance will become the most important measure. Just to show up, is no longer enough.
3. Flexible / remote learning must still be social, not isolating. Learning has an important role to play in developing culture and community in organisations, particularly if people are working from home. This is something that organisations will need to work harder at with a hybrid workforce.
4. Develop the skills for interactive virtual delivery. We all know that passively watching a Powerpoint presentation on Zoom is generally not the most thrilling experience -yawn!! It is possible to make online sessions engaging and interactive, even for large audiences, but these digital facilitation skills do need to be learned and developed. Start training your trainers now for this new world.
5. Begin to measure and report upon the carbon saving of your learning programmes. This can be relatively easily done with online carbon calculators and thinking about the number of people you’re training, the distance they would travel and their mode of transport.
It’s fair to say that the pandemic caught many on the back foot. Very few organisations had plans in place for this scenario. It’s effect has been seismic and it’s changed the way things are done in many workplaces, perhaps forever. The ripples will certainly continue to be felt for many years; but in recognising the direction of the flow, we can start making changes to our learning offering now, that will make it truly future-ready.
For a full megatrend analysis and predictions on what work and learning will look like in 3-5 years time, you can download our Impact of Covid on Work and Learning White Paper.