3 simple steps to delivering results with Learning Technologies

by | Feb 1, 2011 | Articles

Here are some of the key points from a seminar that we first delivered  at Learning Technologies 2011 to over 130 people looking at  at 3 simple steps to delivering results with learning technologies.  We hope you will find useful in your journey with learning technologies.  The session draws on the findings of the  2010-11 Towards Maturity Benchmark.

The promise of learning technologies

For many organisations the promise of technology in learning is incredibly powerful. They are looking for technology to help them:

  • be more responsive to business challenges
  • get staff up and running and changing direction faster than ever before
  • extend the reach of their learning offering
  • Whilst saving time and money and without compromising quality!

But once organisationshave embarked on a journey with learning technologies the path to achieving the required results isn’t always clear. Many find themselves stuck often overwhelmed by choices and options & regularly unable to engage the staff in their business.

Yet some are more successful than others. So what can we learn from them?

Over the years, 1200 benchmark participants over 8 years have helped us to identify 6 workstreams of learning technology implementation practices that consistently correlate to improved benefits– take up, efficiency and ultimately business performance. The 6 workstreams are divided into 19 activity areas which in turn are made up of over 90 individual actions and behaviours that all influence success. These actions at the heart of the Towards Maturity Model.

The new TM Index is a single benchmark of implementation maturity across the 6 workstreams.  We found that, compared with organisations in the bottom quartile of the TM Index, the organisations in the top quartile are reporting :

  • 2x audience take up
  • 33% additional cost saving
  • 50% additional saving in study time
  • 6x decrease in time to proven competency
  • 6x  more likely to report increased productivity
  • 3 x as likely to report improved customer satisfaction

(see chapter 3 and 4 of the 2010-11 benchmark study for more information on the TM Index).

3 simple steps to improve results

We found that as the TM Index increases, the reported results also increase. So here are  3 simple steps to help improve your TM Index (and your results):

  • REVIEW  – look at the 90 different implementation areas and consider those where you are stronger and weaker
  • COMPARE – first compare your responses with others to identify priority action areas and then take a closer look at how others have addressed these areas
  • ACT – Take action based on what you find!

These 3 steps are the essence of benchmarking. Benchmarking is used by business to help develop an action plan to increase performance. It is often seen  as a continuous process in which organisations continually seek to improve their practices.

Lets take a look at these 3 simple steps in action for you:

Review

Consider the following statements ( all of which correlate to business results)

On a scale of 1 to 9 , how true are these statements for you? (1 being not true, 9 being very true)

1. We know what learning technologies can do for us
2. Our e-learning supports the skills the business needs
3. We encourage learners to share experiences and solve problems together using social media
4. Our face to face courses actively build on knowledge gained through e-learning
5. Learners have access to job aids
6. Our top managers are seen to use e-learning
7. We measure business metrics when evaluating effectiveness

Compare

Download the PDF below to understand how widespread these activities are and how  your answers compare with over 400 of your peers.  In the download, we have also provided you with some feedback and links to example case studies or resources to help you benchmark further. The compare process also llustrates how you could address some of the areas in your action plan.

Act

As a result of this review and compare exercise, what action do you now plan to take? We’ve found that many of the activity areas are common sense but not necessarily common practice.

Get started today – complete your full review for free

This exercise is just a quick example of how benchmarking works. Our first recommended action would be to complete a full review of your implementation against the 90 different areas in the new Towards Maturity Benchmark Centre.

You can find out for free what your TM index is and which of the 6 workstreams are strongest and weakest for you. It will cost you about 40 minutes of your time but may save months in the long term.

70% of organisations who complete the review alone have found that the process provided  them with new ideas to try out.

You can also use the benchmark centre to provide a focus for continual improvement – premium users can receive detailed feedback, have access to resources and keep track of their action plans.

As this is a continually changing industry, Towards Maturity commit to maintaining the benchmark and recalibrating the results on an annual basis, working with our ambassadors and industry supporters to ensure that it continually reflects ongoing good practices that influence results. We also continually update the resources and case studies within the centre so do let us know what you think and what you would like to see there.

Find out more

Get started in the TM Benchmark Centre at www.towardsmaturity.org/mybenchmark

Find out more about the TM Benchmark Centre here

Download the slides from the presentation and further information and resources on the 7 activity areas covered in this article from the links below.

You don’t have to be logged in to download these resources, but if you enjoyed the seminar or have found this useful, please tweet your recommendations!

Related downloads

Compare your L&D strategy with the Towards Maturity Learning Health Check

Compare your L&D strategy

Review your L&D strategy to discover your strengths and opportunities for improvement with the Towards Maturity Learning Health Check.

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