Why all the hype about social learning?
Let’s begin with an example. Mechatronics is a design process that includes a combination of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, telecommunications engineering, control engineering and computer engineering. Was it ever possible that such diverse sciences were studied by a single individual or university, that now come to be known as mechatronics? Of course, not! In fact the development of all kinds of sciences, inventions and discoveries were a collective effort of the entire global community because researches by different people in different universities in different countries have been combined, tested, verified and improvised before taking the form of theorems and concepts as we know them.
This is what social learning is. Man has always been a social learner. However, it is only recently that organisations have identified this aspect and are making conscious efforts to facilitate social learning in a more organized way. Social learning has great potential to boost any business because the knowledge of an entire community is always greater than the sum of its parts.
What is Enterprise Social Learning?
Enterprise Social Learning is social learning extrapolated to the enterprise/organisation level. It takes no rocket-science level of thinking to say that a community of organisations working together would learn and evolve mutually. They could be in the same or different industries. For example a healthcare provider collaborating with an IT company to design a revenue management system.
How does it happen?
There are many mobile and desktop apps and tools that merge with your existing LMS to help you track the learning of your employees and aggregate that as a whole to determine the learning that is taking place in your organisation. Tin Can API makes it possible to track all the learning, even that which is taking place outside the organisation. Moreover, they also have features to record details about whatever learning has happened when collaborative events like conferences and seminars take place. Enterprises can take part in microblogging, discussion forums, file sharing, tagging, rating, commenting and all kinds of social activities on blogs, wikis and other types of learning content.
Organisations can learn from each other and mutually collaborate to add to their existing repertoire of knowledge with less than half the effort. This is why enterprise social learning exists; to build communities that promote mutual trust and healthy competition between competitors and peers so that they may benefit from one another.