I speak with a lot of L&D leaders, and recent conversations with them have all steered towards a common topic – how to create the right learning architecture and platform for their organizations.
In trying to achieve this, I find L&D teams grappling with many challenges, but here is what I feel are the Top 7 challenges
- Distracted, impatient and demanding learners (but obvious!)
- The multitude of content and vendors choices that create confusion (it’s a jungle!)
- Legacy LMS solution ROI, and whether to leverage or replace (hard one to solve!)
- Integration challenges – how to avoid multiple logins across content sources (caution – high $$$ spend alert!)
- How to integrate classroom (not going away yet!) and self-paced courses (MOOCs have high demand but low completion!)
- Pressures from the business to align with digital (heard in 100% of my conversations)
- Pressure to try new tech (AI, AI, and more AI)
Companies have found different ways of addressing these challenges. Many are creating their own learner engagement platforms, while others continue to have the LMS in the center. Several are in experimentation mood. And so many still seem to be in wait and watch mode.
But here’s what I have observed as a few best practices in creating the right learning architecture and platform:
Best practice #1: Decide your learning philosophy
Here, you need to answer two simple questions:
- What do you believe in more – classroom or self-paced? It’s likely to be a mix of the two, but assign a % to both
- What do you believe in more – building internal capability, or relying on vendor-partners? Again, it’s going to be a mix of two, so assign a % to both This should help define your strategic intent and clarify a lot of doubts in your path forward.
Best practice #2: Choose your base solution
Here, you need to decide what sits at the base of your learner experience. In other words, where does the learner login – the LMS, or a custom platform, or something specific that sits on your legacy LMS, or a specialized AI-based learning platform? Many options available here. Before you proceed further, identify and commit to your base solution, including $$$ for further development.
Best practice #3: Identify your strategic learning partners
This is key. I’ve seen companies stalling in execution because they find it hard to make a choice – it’s hard because there are just so many options out there. You cannot get everything, so making choices is what this is all about. Mind your gaps and find strategic vendors to work alongside, ideally, companies with a tech platform, fill in a specific content related need, and have a long-term vision that aligns with what you believe in.
Best practice #4: Co-create
I doubt if there is a perfect solution out there in the market. So, after you have taken what’s off-the-shelf, look at strategic vendors and co-create content and features that you need. Most learning vendors (KNOLSKAPE included) are open to this aspect, as long as the want is not highly specific. So, create a content roadmap, identify partners, and work alongside them to fulfill your vision
Best practice #5: Experiment, and fail fast
Every company now needs to behave like a tech company, and agile is the way forward. No reason why L&D should be any different. Experiment, collect and analyze data, move fast – pick the solutions that work best for you and drop the rest. Without experimentation, and probably failing miserably in some cases, L&D will never be able to partner with businesses in the digital transformation process.
Any of this something you can relate to? Are you hearing other things? Please comment or drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Disclaimer – these thoughts are my observations from conversations with L&D leaders, not an exhaustive survey. But everyone I’ve shared these with has related to them completely, and hence this article.
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Published by: Nikita Madhu in Blog