Personalised learning – are you ready?

July 31, 2017 Susan Hilliar


A variety of societal, economic, and technological shifts are sparking a need for new ways of learning and upskilling fast. According to research from McKinsey, 45% of job activities for low-skill, low-wage roles and high-paid occupations will be automated and a recent report by PwC suggests that by 2030 a third of British jobs will be taken over by robotics and AI. These shifts are encouraging organisations to reimagine workplace learning and to develop their employees’ skills to stay ahead.


So, what does this mean for HR?


From content managers to content curators


Instead of focussing on creating content, HR leaders need to look for opportunities to encourage people to learn. Becoming content curators means helping employees develop through learning and by starting a two-way dialogue on career progression. It’s also about inspiring employees and making learning inherent in everyone’s day-to-day roles. 


The learning experience


Personalised or curated learning is a term that crops up whenever HR development is discussed. Helped by technology and powered by an ongoing dialogue, we can no longer rely on a “one size fits all” method.


Think about Amazon. Your Amazon feed will show you personalised content, tailored to suit your interests. It allows you to find products quickly and easily, while showing you similar products that you may be interested in. This not only saves you time but also can help you find something new.


Not only can technology collect data and provide you with personalised content in real time, AI can predict the future. Based on previous and existing data, AI can anticipate what future skills will be needed.


A recent release from Cornerstone discusses the workplace learning experience and how it can help employees develop new skills so they can stay ahead. This new future of learning will include a new “Netflix-style” interface with curated content recommendations and personalised playlists that have sharing abilities like Spotify.


Why should leaders buy into this?


Technology is expensive and for organisations to invest in this new way of learning, the investment must pay off. So, what can you do to get leaders and employees wanting to learn?


First, help your leaders become learning curators. They will have to understand that training isn’t always the solution and that development is far more effective. To develop their employees, they will need to invest in new tools and resources that will enable their employees to grow, collaborate and learn.


Secondly, set clear objectives. Learning drives behavioural changes and knowledge. Getting people to understand the importance of learning and acquiring new information is far easier than convincing them to change their behaviour. Behavioural changes require time. HR leaders must ensure there is time to practice and receive feedback and measure the change that takes place.


Personalised learning is here and is an effective approach that encourages people to learn at every stage of their development. If we do not adopt this new approach, organisations will continue to waste time and money on programmes that are not effective and don’t provide a return on investment. It is imperative to start planning new learning initiatives now so you’re prepared for whatever the future of learning holds.


About the Author

Susan Hilliar

"Some of the best stories come from the most unlikely sources – always be curious, always ask questions” ​​​​​​​ Susan Hilliar is Head of Public Realations at Cornerstone OnDemand, as a corporate communications professional she works with Cornerstone’s clients across Europe.

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