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Global Insights: The Future of Technology in the Workplace

LEO Learning recently held a ‘Future of Technology in the Workplace’ event at The Hospital Club, London. The evening featured keynote speeches from four global organizations that we work with. The talks centered around one main theme: how learning technology has shaped the workplace as we know it—and how it will continue to evolve.

The event saw keynote speakers exploring the application of digital learning in varied sectors and diverse locations. From a nuclear site in the North of England to war-torn Syria, there were some surprisingly common challenges and opportunities that united our speakers and delegates.

“All our guests described how they were using technology in ground-breaking and novel ways. And what was fascinating was that they were all tackling the same issue: how best to humanize technology,” said Gareth Jones, Strategic Consultant Lead at LEO Learning and the night’s host. “Their stories demonstrated how the modern training department is drawing on a wide range of specialist knowledge and skills.

We saw how data analysts, neuroscientists, learning technology specialists and, of course, learning design experts fed in to maximize the impact of their learning solutions. If anybody in the audience wanted final confirmation that our industry has come of age, this was the night.”

Here are some of the highlights from our keynote speakers at Jaguar Land Rover, IQVIA, Lane 4, and the Humanitarian Leadership Academy.

image from Leo Learning The Future of Technology event

‘Driving better engagement and increased product knowledge though competition’

Anthony Watkins – Global Product and Launch L&D Manager for Jaguar Land Rover

The talks started with Anthony sharing how Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is revolutionizing its approach to learner engagement by combining the latest learning technology with thoughtful learning design. Note: this is an ongoing project with LEO Learning so we’ll discuss principles, not details, in this blog post.

With a global audience of 47,000 learners speaking 13 different languages, JLR is exploring how to embrace a ‘carrot over stick’ approach for their ‘new product’ training.

The challenge: How to move away from a formulaic, ‘tick-box’ approach that had historically proven to be costly to scale, to one that is cost-effective, fun and engaging.

To focus on creating learning that would stick with its global salesforce, LEO Learning and JLR carried out a number of workshops that stripped everything back to basics, focusing on what motivated the learners. By understanding learner motivations, JLR realized that buy-in could be achieved by tapping into the natural competitiveness of the individual salesperson. Anthony delved into the details of how technology would motivate their global salesforce to jump on new product training as soon as it’s available.

As well as highlighting the mechanics of the learning platform itself, it was fascinating to see how JLR is embracing the importance of comprehensive learning campaigns and communications. Intelligent learner profiles, combined with personalized messaging, are used in tandem to ensure the learning ‘sticks’, with follow-up tasks assigned to learner profiles to reinforce learning and drive behavior change.

‘Empowering Clinical Trial Patients and Sites with Learning Technology’

Andy Nock – Associate Director of Multimedia Solutions at IQVIA

IQVIA is a leading global provider of advanced analytics, technology solutions, and contract research services to the life sciences industry dedicated to delivering actionable insights. Andy leads a team that develops online educational resources for patients who are on clinical trials. Andy’s story demonstrated the power that personalized learning can have on user experience. By using learning technology to support patients on the trials, the broader impact of learning was illustrated perfectly.

Andy spoke of the tools and techniques that IQVIA uses to reassure and engage learners, in an environment where ease of use is paramount. Microlearning ensures users weren’t overwhelmed with information, while technology means that learners can access their schedule and vital information about their trials at any time, on any device.

As Andy spoke, a clear narrative emerged around the importance of humanizing learning. Step-by-step animations, gamified quizzes, and story-based content all serve to replicate how people naturally learn.

By putting the learner experience at the heart of the journey, IQVIA has used the technology to reassure the learner, which helps improve data collection for clinical sites and sponsors. All essential factors that have increased completion rates of the trials.

‘Can we digitize the DNA of leadership development?’

Kate Mahoney – Director Strategic Planning at Lane 4

Kate’s talk explored the skills and tools required for leadership development, and drew a number of parallels that apply to the wider world of digital learning. Her talk also explored how learning can happen at multiple levels and in unexpected ways.

The advantages of on-demand information in the learning industry is not in doubt. One challenge that rises from this is the reduced attention span our learners now have.

In leadership development this conflicts with the fact that developing many leadership skills take time. It takes time to nurture relationships. Likewise, it takes time to understand how you will react in the face of adversity. Anecdotal stories of attending a five-day leadership development course that changed someone’s career are rarely heard in the context of straight-up eLearning courses.

So, the challenge for modern digital learning is: How do you replicate these types of immersive experiences with an audience that wants it all now?

The answer to this was considered through the challenge of how do you get a learner addicted to learning? A surprising number of parallels could be drawn with leadership development—focusing on individuals’ identity, capability, competency, and adaptability. Personalized learning, such as using upfront assessments to assign user-specific content, showed how this strand of thinking can be realized with learning technologies.

‘Innovations in humanitarian learning’

Atish Gonzales – Global Innovation Director at Humanitarian Leadership Academy

Atish explored how technology was helping learners deal with humanitarian issues in some of the most remote and challenging areas to work in the world. The challenge was how to create and share learning that is engaging, scalable, and impactful to help build communities and save lives.

Hearing Atish give us context of learning technology being used to support traumatized victims in war-torn Syria was both humbling and inspiring.

You can discover more about the learning technologies that HLA employs to offer scalable solutions in hard-to-reach parts of the world.

Find out more! Read our HLA case study.

Looking to the future, Atish offered fascinating examples of how learning data could be captured and correlated against disaster modeling data to serve up typhoon disaster training to the front-line before predicted events. Two worlds of data collide to show us a powerful future of learning!

image from The Future of Technology eventLeo Learning -

There’s so much more to discover. If you’d like to see how learning technology can shape the future of your workplace, get in touch today.

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