Social Learning pays off! A Success Story

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Learning by force is passé. How do organizations engage with young, trendy, and tech-savvy people when it comes to learning and development? In a world where the social platform is increasingly the way to connect, learn, grow and scale, businesses are being made to alter their thinking.  Organizations are finding innovative ways of training and upskilling the workforce. If the dose of social learning can be tailored to meet the needs of a business then a learner’s participation graph is sure to reflect an upward trend.

Recognition by Brandon Hall and the CLO forum is considered prestigious. Such recognition puts companies constantly in pursuit of innovation and excellence in the limelight. This blog seeks to capture the essence of client experience and highlights the ability to provide a platform with a ‘social connect’ appeal to learning itself! In short, Origin’s idea of coming up with a learning solution that could adapt to the current changes in the sphere of learning is what made the client engagement work.

Social Learning Case Study for luxury retail

As you read on, you will find out how one of the world’s largest luxury travel retailers with an impressive brand portfolio has successfully rolled out Origin’s social platform solution that has kept its learners engaged to the core! With the fashion and luxury retail industry going through constant innovation, the emphasis was to make the transfer of knowledge to employees smooth, seamless, and simple using the social platform.  Only 30% staff had a company computer or tablet and a company email address.  Most store computers were dedicated to sales and related management reporting with associates having neither a company computer or a tablet, nor a phone.  However, as almost all had their own smartphone or tablet, devising a mobile strategy to support learning seemed to be the best answer.

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An 18-times jump in the number of learners opting to go through the learning and development module was certainly a ‘wow’ factor for the retailer who has a wide geographical presence. If during the pilot-phase 500 employees were covered, the program touched 9,000 employees during the roll-out period!  With no training program to use, the solution was modeled with navigation features similar to the most popular social sites. Now that must have caught your attention!

The preliminary results showed an encouraging sign. When an assessment of the metric dashboard was done, the key factors that made a better customer engagement possible included new employees quickly moving to productivity cycle; improved delivery, tracking, and reporting of compliance and risk programs; increased instances of just-in-time (JIT) training; and better overall revenue and productivity numbers for post-training activities. Providing a platform for communications for distributed workforce where not all of them have access to emails and mapping the new system to meet the needs of the predominantly GenY workforce are two other aspects of the solution that captivated the client.

In addition to these visible impacts, if the ROI has to be calculated in direct comparison to comparable company statistics using a particular year prior to product roll-out as the benchmark, then results show a significant saving in direct system costs in comparison to legacy systems and delivery costs of required training per new employee, among other things. Some features and benefits of dovetailing social learning in the existing LMS frame to suit the learner’s need (largely young, trendy and upwardly-mobile) paid off rich dividends! It’s a clear win-win for the organization as well as the client.

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The program roll-out was so successful that it made users have second thoughts about their company’s intranet!

Who would have thought that the learning process itself could be democratized? To elaborate, the solution enabled content creation by users. This made the learning participation more holistic. Secondly, given the scenario of inter-connectedness and interdependence that are perceived as two dominant factors of the learning atmosphere (in the context of rapidly changing technologies), encouraging learning by sharing and collaboration and using a single portal in a device-agnostic way threw open the gates of learning for the client! Sharing success stories and lessons learnt from business in a centralized repository, creating a best practices community, providing a platform to deliver key messages from the senior leaders led to stronger customer engagement.

The solution also enabled peer-to-peer problem solving process between employees, created a stronger network and common understanding across many global locations through a single platform. The existing Learning Management Systems (LMS) was juxtaposed in a way to facilitate training without derailing the processes already in place. The learning portal became the first enterprise application to reach all the employees.

By encouraging the sharing of ideas and providing short-training sessions, the system made it easy for associates anywhere in the world to upload or download content, comment on good ideas, and create groups (communities of interest), which in turn influenced the customer to explore other avenues to expand the scope of implementation.


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