If your organization has used the same Learning Management System (LMS) for a long time, switching to a new system can seem like a daunting prospect, particularly if your workforce is comfortable with your existing LMS. In a new NetDimensions Insight, we’ll show you how to make the change smoothly.
Learning leaders are often held back from enjoying all the benefits of a modern, optimized learning management system, instead finding themselves working with an old LMS which lacks the capability to enable the kind of eLearning which can accelerate organizational success.
This blog is based on a learning portal seminar hosted by Peter Dobinson, Solutions Architect at NetDimensions’ partner company LEO, at the NextSteps 2017 conference in London.
While a Learning Management System (LMS) provides a wealth of diverse information for your learners, portals act as a neat destination on more focused areas. As well as being gateways to further learning, portals are popular with NetDimensions’ clients because of their capacity to provide everything from guidance about new working processes to insights into user engagement.
Why do organizations like learning portals?
There are a lot of reasons why companies find learning portals highly effective. You can target a specific audience – potentially employees, customers or anyone who wants to access your learning programmes – and focus on a precise business impact area or goal, such as sales learning, with a holistic solution.
Measuring the business impact of learning was a key focus at the NetDimensions EMEA User conference in London in May. According to Fosway’s Learning and Talent Analytics: Practical Strategies to Drive Real Outcomes 2015 Study, 85% of companies say HR Analytics is a medium or high priority. In addition, recent research conducted by LEO found that more than 85% of L&D professionals want to use analytics to improve their learning programs, while over 77% believe that it’s possible to demonstrate learning’s impact. However, L&D departments are still unsure about how to effectively measure the business impact of their learning activities.
Why measuring the business of learning is important
As budgets inside large organizations are decreasing, it’s becoming increasingly important for L&D to demonstrate its impact to top management. We now have the capabilities and the tools to actually analyze the connection between Learning and Development activities, and business performance. According to the Brandon Hall Group’s Learning Analytics 2017 Study, as much as 51.5% of organizations only analyze their learning program’s data annually or on an ad hoc basis. Only 14.4% of organizations continuously analyze their learning program’s data. Organizations need to move away from a snapshot analysis, which quickly becomes outdated over time, to a more sustainable process where big data is used strategically to make business decisions.
The technology to measure the business impact of learning is now available in the market but organizations are struggling to put in place a sustainable strategy to measure and then demonstrate that impact.
In the interview below, Piers Lea, Chief Strategy Officer at NetDimensions’ partner company LEO and Donald H Taylor, Chairman of the Learning and Performance Institute, talk about why measuring the business Impact of learning is important and why L&D managers should begin the journey now.
For the past few years, buzzwords about (big or small) data and making sense of all that information have been thrown around quite often by industry research analysts and vendors alike.
First things first — what is big data? Where does it come from?
According to the Gartner IT Glossary big data includes high-volume, high-velocity and/or high-variety information assets that demand cost-effective, innovative forms of information processing that enable enhanced insight, decision making, and process automation.
The fourth V, veracity can be considered the most important. How accurate is that data in predicting business value? Do the results of a big data analysis actually make sense? Data must be able to be verified based on both accuracy and context.1
More specifically in the context of HR professionals, department managers, chief learning officers, and training managers, the vast pool of information consists of personnel data, learning or training data, job profiles, competencies, performance appraisals, and more. Your organization already has some or all of these pieces of data, and even a lot more. One of the challenges is that these pieces of information are most likely stored or recorded in silos.
Keep in mind there is already plenty of enough useful information to analyze within your Learning Management System (LMS) alone to get started.
David Brooks just wrote an opinion piece in The New York Times, What Data Can’t Do.
It’s really good; reasoned, nuanced, supported by relevant example and contextualized in the literature. Well worth reading.
It got me thinking about the limits of data-driven decision making in general. Bertrand Russell argued that no system can be understood by reference to anything from inside the system, no matter how clever the arguments. Ludwig Wittgenstein argued that nothing can be understood, or even adequately explained — period.
The data scientists are giving us amazing insights and trying to explain everything. They will doubtless continue to generate lots of actionable insight, including insight into the world of talent management, but they will fail at the “everything” part.
Everything is too tall an order.
Read Brooks’ piece. It’s food for thought.