We live in a world where mobile devices are totally embedded into our lives. Technological advancements are changing our way of viewing learning and performance. As technologies emerge, the learning style must also change accordingly to meet the desires or to motivate and engage learners in training. Any new technology will bring opportunities, risks, and many questions of how, when, and where to use exactly. So, let’s start with the primary technology – mobile, in order to interact with the content and then with the performance support for your sales team to boost your company’s sales.
What is Learning?
Learning is a step by step process of knowledge acquiring through study, experience, etc., to make sense of what he learned. Simply it is the changes inside the people, the changes in the mind, the heart, etc., where things we recall and recognize.
What is Training?
Training is an organized activity to disseminate information and/or instructions to improve recipients’ performance or help them reach a required level of knowledge or skill.
What is Performance Support?
Performance support is similar to the assistance you get from an instruction or user manual when you buy a new product, where in you’ll try to follow the instructions step-by-step in order to assemble or install that product, but not to retain or memorize that information.
Are there any differences between Training and Performance Support (PS)?
Is training itself enough for you to perform your job successfully? Do you need any performance support to complement your training session? To spot the answers to these questions, let’s see a few differences between them.
Learning a new skill or expanding the previous skill or knowledge is the main purpose of training, but PS is purely applying the skills learnt, solving problems with changing performance practices.
Training: It is needed when one wants to learn a new concept or want to enhance his skills as well performance in his workplace.
PS: When one needs to apply a skill at his workplace, for example, a sales person refers to a product specification manual before meeting a customer.
Generally, training is looked at as a separate schedule mapped with specific time and efforts to be completed. Whereas, performance support serves as a Just-in-Time (JIT) learning component that enables to the point learning in a short span of time.
What are the components of a good performance support system?
- Advisory components, usually a job-aid in an electronic form.
- Information components, which may include:
- Company policies
- Training components, which help learners access the training material on demand.
- User interface components, the most important aspect that seamlessly integrates all other components of the PS.
Performance Support and Mobile Learning:
Before going into the details of performance support using mobile learning, let’s see when PS is most essential.
- Learning something for the first time
- Trying to learn more about something
- Trying to remember, apply, or adapt something new
- Dealing with something wrong and trying to give a solution for it
- Identifying what went wrong and trying to correct it
The best way to embed PS into the workforce is through mobile-learning technology. So let’s look at few ways of how it is done.
1. Availability at Moment of Need:
Mobile technology is on the rise, each and every individual is carrying it virtually all the time. This feature of mobile devices ensures a delivery platform or channel whenever and wherever PS is required.
2. Responsive Design:
The responsive nature of mobile devices automatically senses and adapts to the display of the device. It provides a cost-effective way of adapting the tools and the training material for mobile PS system without having to update for each and every mobile device.
3. Offline Storage:
Mobile devices are the powerful computing devices. They store information even when not connected to the Internet. For example, if a customer has an emergency service at his doorstep for some short circuit issue in the early hours i.e. around 2 am, the service technician would still be able to fix his issue by accessing a short video or a troubleshooting guide, manual or some reference material, which he stored in his mobile device. It’s nothing but the true essence of PS to quickly and effectively solve a problem, when needed.
Finally, find the performance support system that offers the features and functions that suit your business needs, address the moment of need, periodically track your sales team, and update your PS continually to support your workforce do their job effectively.
What other features or ways do you think are important for mobile performance support? Please share with us in the comments section below.