Performance Support and the Drive Towards Organizational Learning Maturity

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Performance and Support are two terms that organizations are remarkably familiar with. Employees are rated on their productivity and efficiency, while organizations associate with “Support” functions through training, development, and mentoring. Over the last five years, there has been a significant focus on the skilling aspect of training employees to prepare for the future. And organizations have made vital advancements in this direction. IBM committing to skill 30 million people globally by 2030, and PwC budgeting upwards of $3 billion to upskill its employees and boost technology, are some of the high-ranking enterprises that made headlines. However, over the last year, the focus has evolved and is now resting firmly in bringing the two together, in the form of Performance Support. What exactly is Performance Support, and why is it gaining immense traction in the scope of work performance? What are the key aspects for organizations to consider and how can they work towards implementation? This blog will look to address the very concept, its “foundation” through the identification of the moments of need, the strategy, and the future of performance support solutions.

Performance Support and the Drive Towards Organizational Learning Maturity

What is Performance Support?

As the term indicates, solutions that support enhanced work performance is Performance Support. It caters to the needs of employees, precisely at their point of need, and in the flow of work. Just in time solutions that assist employees to complete their tasks more efficiently and effectively.
Did you know that 19.8% of an employee’s time – the equivalent of one day per week – is wasted in searching for information to do their job effectively? Performance Support solutions address this critical need.
In the same breath, it is important to consider another fact. Did you know that we forget 90% of what we learn within the first month? Hence, it is safe to say that organizations that “support” employees in their work primarily through day-long training programs will not achieve the learning outcomes sought. Training the workforce on new systems, processes, and more is simply not retained by the workforce for long-term retention and application. It is to plug such clear gaps and to provide the right support to employees, organizations must invest to train and support employees during their course of work, at their point of need. Employees are highly attuned as they learn through application and practice, and this makes for sticky learning.

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To sum up, Performance Support is acclaimed because:

  • It delivers training to employees precisely at their point of need
  • Assists the workforce in the flow of work, seamlessly
  • By integrating training with work, training effectiveness and engagement is irrefutable
  • Fosters excellence in performance; every task, every day
  • Reduces formal training costs

What are the “Five Moments of Need” for Employees?

Performance Support is intricately linked to the “Five Moments of Need”. The concept sheds light on the precise moments when we look for information, or what are the situations that beckon assistance. Understanding this fundamental concept can go a long way in creating and delivering training impact to seekers. Today, it is looked at as a sustainable framework of effective on-the-job training and work performance for individuals and teams. The moments of need are:

(a) Learning for the first time

(b) Learning more

(c) Applying what has been learned

(d) Problem-solving, when things go wrong

(e) When things change

Day-long training programs are simply not suitable for today’s needs and pace of work and fail to make the cut. Additionally, we have been facing a new learning challenge for the past two years with remote working and hybrid work environments. Employees are facing the brunt of isolation and are finding it increasingly challenging to pursue work-related training or learning and development. It is time that organizations invest in delivering support when and where it truly matters. It is training in the now and here that matters, and this is where Performance Support delivers. It revolves around creating learning opportunities for staff on the work floor.

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Our use and dependencies on google, YouTube, chatbots, Siri, and more are classic examples of performance support tools for the above-listed five needs.

With these inputs, it is clear that performance support fosters an environment of continuous learning and is best suited for organizations looking to build and nourish a culture of learning among the workforce. When learning is seamlessly integrated into daily tasks and working environments, it directly contributes to the organization’s L&D maturity and sustainability.

This article here is another great read of how to address the moments of need in corporate learning.

This infographic is your ready reckoner for all things Performance Support.

Performance Support_infographics

The key merits of Performance Support and its direct link to improving productivity is explained in detail in this blog here. It further addresses the barriers for enterprises to overcome in order to benefit at large.

Performance Support and Primary Learning Models & Strategies

While there are numerous learning strategies and industry best practices, organizations have relied on models that work best for their needs, areas of strength, and employee competencies. You can read about this in detail in this blog here. However, the most popular strategy or model has been the “70-20-10 learning model”. The learning model is devised on the principle that individuals obtain 70 percent of their knowledge from job-related experiences, 20 percent from interactions with others, and 10 percent from formal educational events.

Performance Support solutions put the focus firmly on the largest chunk of the 70-20-10 model, by providing experiential learning, and places learning-by-doing in the front and center.

Furthermore, training and development at the workplace has undergone a metamorphosis over the last decade and beyond. While it has fundamentally moved from “nice to have” to “need to have” at organizations, L&D gurus have also gone beyond generalized and common training programs for the entire workforce to specific modules with specific outcomes. From skill training (upskilling and reskilling), specialized and focused training, or targeted training to competency training, the singular focus has propelled organizational L&D and is today a key driver for organizational growth, success, and sustainability. It will hence be least surprising to see L&D hold its place firmly in the C-suite for years to come.

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What Does the Future Hold?

It looks increasingly encouraging for enterprises to deliver performance support solutions with the aid of technology. Although the digital transformation of workplace learning has evidently enveloped the world of L&D, organizations are expanding their horizon through learning technologies.

Leading research papers reveal the stance taken by top organizations for 2022.

75% rank creating a stronger link between learning and performance as their top priority NOW, and

51% have already begun restructuring their learning function, with

39% revealing online performance support is the way to go

Recently, Brandon Hall Group featured our solutions model that effectively addressed knowledge and skill gaps by providing targeted training at the work floor. How did we go about the strategy, what were the key barriers at the enterprise and how did it turbocharge work performance? Read all about this and more in this exclusive article.

Performance Support makes the benefits of continuous learning truly tangible. It creates an environment for employees to be more receptive learners. It continues to prove itself beneficial to the organization, employees, and L&D leaders. Most importantly, performance support provides solutions for today. The future is NOW and HERE, and it is time for enterprises to act swiftly.

Would you like to know more about Performance Support opportunities to enhance work performance? Are you looking to deploy the right Performance Support tools for your workforce? Write to ,  and view our award-winning solutions.


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