Engaging Learners with Blended Learning

Did you get a chance to read the LinkedIn 2018 Workplace Learning Report? There are lots of interesting stats peppered in the report. Sample these nuggets:

  • The workforce agrees, training for soft skills is the #1 priority.
  • 68% of employees prefer to learn at work.
  • 58% of employees prefer self-paced learning.
  • The #1 challenge for L&D teams is to get employees to learn.
  • 56% of employees would pick a course recommended by their manager.

Blended learning

Do you know which would be the best strategy to address the L&D challenges presented in the report?

The answer is hidden in plain sight in the title of this blog post. Yes, it is ‘Blended Learning’.

Market research firm Technavio forecasts that the global corporate blended learning market – 2018-2022 to grow at a CAGR of over 11% during the forecast period. The other key finding in the report is that the automotive industry dominated the global corporate blended learning market with a share of close to 31%. The BFSI sector and the consumer goods industry followed with a share of 23% and 21%, respectively. Hence it is quite evident that blended learning is here to stay and will be used in tandem with bite-sized/microlearning to foster corporate learning.

In this blog post, we will examine in blended learning and its benefits in detail.

Garrison and Kanuka defined ‘Blended Learning’ as – “At its simplest, blended learning is the integration of classroom face-to-face learning experiences with online learning experiences.”  Blended learning has its roots in both classroom teaching and online learning. The key challenge for course-creators is to offer the right balance of self-paced learning and instructor-led training.

The Benefits of Blended Learning

We examine some of the key benefits of blended learning.

Flexibility

Blended learning lets you structure content easily. Complex portions of the learning can be delivered via an instructor-led classroom training session. The less intensive portions of the training program can be chunked into self-paced learning units.

Personalized Learning Experience

Blended learning helps you offer your learners a personalized learning experience as instructors can help the learners find specific answers to their questions. By building appropriate bridges in the training program, you can help learners switch from self-paced learning to instructor-led modules with ease.

Cost-effectiveness

By incorporating modules that bring in a virtual classroom mode, learners and instructors can interact in real time. This helps organizations cut down on travel and accommodation costs.

Digitization

Blended learning digitizes a major portion of learning that would traditionally require a physical classroom setup with an instructor and students. Efficient eLearning design focuses on minimizing expenses and maximizing RoI derived by deploying the learning content.

Tracking Feedback

Blended learning lets organizations integrate feedback/survey forms in two ways. One is the regular form at the end of the module/program. Two – Learners can give feedback directly to the instructor. This helps organizations assimilate feedback and make enhancements to the next version of the learning program.

It is important for organizations to figure out which strategy would work best for them. In some cases, for a smaller organization with staff based out of only one location, investing in a blended learning program may not be the right solution. Granting staff access to a readily available ‘off-the-shelf’ course or creating a customized self-paced eLearning course may work better.

Success Story

Randstad Sourceright have demonstrated the success of blended learning in this case study. The challenge was to create a flexible learning solution that would cater to the diverse needs of the employees. By adopting a blended learning approach, which combined eLearning with face-to-face classes and adopting role-appropriate training, 100% increase in course completion was observed. This is ample proof to demonstrate the success of blended learning models in modern workplace learning.

Origin’s Take

In the past few years, we are observing a significant shift towards bite-sized and video-based learning. As learning content shifts to the smartphone, the challenge to make eLearning content effective and engaging also increases exponentially. Blended learning is not a strategy or model that can be blindly applied to every eLearning project just for the sake of learner engagement. Case-by-case, based on business and learning requirements, we offer blended learning solutions that drive growth and improve retention of learning.

Write to us at info@originlearning.com to learn how we can help build the appropriate blended learning solution for your organization.

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