Did you know that the average smartphone today is more powerful than the PCs that took two astronauts to the moon in 1969?! We bet you didn’t.
For organizations that underestimate the power of mobile devices, here’s the catch: global mobile data traffic grew 69 percent in 2014 and one fourth of the total global internet page views come from mobile devices. Yes, if stats are to be believed, enterprises are quickly realizing the potential of mobile devices to become agents of training; agents that employees have and use all the time. According to SkillSoft, 93% of CEOs plan to increase or maintain their training budget, and 85% already have a mobile training strategy, or will implement one soon.
The ushering in of the Bring Your Own Device era has created opportunities for organizations to leverage devices for learning that people access on the go. According to Gartner Inc., almost 4 in 10 organizations will rely exclusively on BYOD by 2016, and 85 percent of businesses will have some kind of BYOD program in place by 2020. With BYOD policies, comes the need for device agnostic content delivery which makes sure that learning experience is largely unaffected by the end user’s device.
As far as the content is concerned, the power of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, lies in their capability to offer the learner short ‘bursts’ of information which are extremely powerful in aiding retention. Simply converting an existing e-learning catalog into m-learning has little success. On the contrary, micro sized learning aka micro-learning ‘nuggets’ such as reminders, word of the day, podcasts, video vignettes, updates, FAQs, etc. to supplement on-the-job performance for just-in-time learning have proved their effectiveness and usefulness to employees. Moreover, mobile learning fits the bill of a blended learning strategy, joining the dots between more traditional forms of training as employees shuffle between work, move between places and change gadgets that serve them according to their changing needs. Geo-location and mobile app analytics tools help deliver personalized learning experiences which are authentic and context sensitive for employees.
According to a report by Towards Maturity, a little less than half (47%) of organizations use mobile devices like tablets and smartphones for learning and training which currently makes mobile learning a $5.3 billion dollar market with a potential to be $12.2 billion by 2017.
One of the most notable things is the ability of mobile devices to engage people and facilitate communication anywhere anytime. In a 2014 study which was commissioned to GfK by Facebook, it was revealed that Facebook and email are most likely to be accessed across all devices, with the mobile being the only device used continuously throughout the day. By enabling social learning over mobile devices, organizations can nurture a healthy learning environment where employees not just learn to survive but learn to thrive by collaborating on ideas and thoughts and building on one another’s existing knowledge.