There comes a time in every employee’s life when what was learned during training, is forgotten. It could be as simple as forgetting the fifth step in a 9-step process; it could be as urgent as having to pull out a policy in the presence of an angry customer, and not being able to remember which one it is that applies to that individual; or it could be as frustrating as getting stuck when installing an appliance, but having no access to a troubleshooting manual. The result is ‘poor’ customer satisfaction. What would help in these situations is performance support – just-in-time information that is accessible and applicable at the point of need, and solves a very specific work-related problem. Rapid eLearning development can be used to create several courses, rapidly, unlike traditional eLearning or classroom training. Let’s look at what is entailed to provide employees with performance support and how rapid eLearning development can help. But first, let’s understand what just-in-time learning is.
Understanding Just-in-Time Learning
Just-in-time learning is not training; it is performance support and must address a specific problem. The module must be short, to the point, and address only one learning point. It must serve its purpose – which is to help an employee perform a specific task, immediately. It is accessed at the time of need and not before that, and that ‘time of need’ could be at anytime and anywhere. Employees prefer to access performance support on their devices, and therefore the information must be made accessible on their personal devices. Just-in-time learning is provided only when learners have some existing knowledge on the concerned topic.
While it might seem easy to create short courses and push them out to employees on their personal devices, there are several issues that arise during the development of these courses that training managers might not anticipate.
- Several courses would need to be developed – each addressing a specific learning point.
- Traditional eLearning tools are complicated and cumbersome to use.
- Usage of traditional tools requires programming skills and therefore cannot be developed in-house.
- Updates to just-in-time courses will take almost as long as it takes to create a new course.
- Because content must be viewed on a variety of devices (with various screen sizes), content must be designed in a responsive manner.
- Translations to reach a global audience, will be required.
- Since just-in-time learning is short and very specific, there is usually no need for detailing that is otherwise involved in training. Courses are minimalistic.
- For just-in-time information to be successful, a variety of resources can be used. Some of these training resources are simulations (step-by-step explanation of processes), training tutorials, branching scenarios, infographics, video demos, case studies, self-assessments, support group integration, bite-sized games, and trouble-shooting steps. As you can imagine, all these take time to create – not to mention the costs involved.
- Because just-in-time learning needs to be up-to-date always, it is necessary to use an authoring tool that allows for quick updates.
With so much work going into creating just-in-time learning, organizations find it hard to get information out, on time; and they invariably end up settling for low-quality courses that can be churned out quickly – compromising on quality, while continuing to pay a hefty amount for them. What is required is a rapid and inexpensive alternative to churning out high-quality courses. Here’s how rapid eLearning development helps:
The Case for Rapid E-learning Development – for Just-in-time Learning
Rapid eLearning development is the rapid development of high quality online courses, using rapid authoring tools. It is the ideal solution when time and cost are limited. Here’s how:
- Quality is never compromised with rapid eLearning development. It is possible to create high-quality courses within a limited budget and timeframe.
- Courses can be created quickly, with very little effort. Updates and iterations can be made easily and quickly, because the tools are so flexible.
- Just-in-time learning requires organizations to make several courses, with each course addressing a learning point. Rapid eLearning development makes it possible to create several courses, quickly.
- The tools are easy to use and require no technical knowledge or programming skills. The courses can be created by subject matter experts who are experts on the topics that must be covered, so other resources can be put to better use.
- Rapid eLearning development makes use of existing content and does not require content to be created from scratch.
- Ready-to-use templates are a part of the tools’ features, and can be used to create courses rapidly. A standard template that is used across courses will bring down development time. Reusable components can be stored in a repository and used as and when required; this again brings down development time and costs.
- Inbuilt features make it easy to create learning resources such as branching scenarios, assessments, basic interactivities and games, integration with support groups.
- Course can be made responsive so that they are compatible with, and accessible, on a variety of devices. This can be done simultaneously for all devices, reducing time and costs.
- Translations can be done directly by simply uploading translated files.
- Courses can quickly be published to different platforms.
How to Choose a Rapid Authoring Tool to Create Just-in-time Learning
- It’s important to decide on a tool that best suits your organization’s just-in-time learning needs. Each tool possesses unique features. Research these tools thoroughly, and choose one that fits your requirements.
- If you are outsourcing your just-in-time needs, find a vendor who has worked on courses in your industry, has knowledge on the latest rapid authoring tools, can provide you with samples and help you decide on the best tool for your requirements.
- Rapid authoring tools are constantly updated, so it would be a good idea to see what’s in and what’s out to make sure you are always up-to-date with the latest.
Just-in-time learning should be easy for employees as well as employers, and especially for training managers to deploy. It should involve a simple and seamless process, without any hassles involved in their development or delivery. Rapid eLearning development is the best choice.