Posted on : January 3rd, 2014
Trends come and go but there are some which inevitably change the path oft travelled. Till a few years ago, it was the norm to assign a time and place for a training session. Within an organization, employees travelled and moved work commitments to fit in the requisite trainings. Then technology aided learning changed the course through computer-based and later, web-based e-trainings. Over the last few years, the course is further changing to fit in the needs of the modern corporate learners.
For the busy professionals of today, time is of the essence. Training and learning are continuous activities but there has to be allowances for their busy schedules. BYOD or Bring Your Own Device is a growing trend in the corporate sector where the learner brings his or her own device to work and accesses learning on it – as per his or her needs.
There are a lot of factors which have led to the growing popularity of this trend.
- The first and foremost is the easy availability and affordability of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Corporate employees are now using mobile devices more than traditional desktop computers – as clearly reflected in the growing decline of PC sales over the last year or so.
- Learners today are self-driven and realize the benefits of learning. They also like to be in control of their learning and have the option of learning whenever or wherever they want. The delivery of learning through multiple devices empowers the learner to learn as and when the need arises.
- The delivery of learning through multiple devices also makes sure that the training content is utilized to the hilt. The learner can now learn on his tablet in the cafeteria, on his smartphone on the way to work or on his laptop at his desk – whenever that he finds time. The training content can also be utilized on-the-spot and for all practical purposes – anytime and anywhere.
Alongside, the e-learning and training industry is also at par with this trend by the adoption of different learning strategies. Newer ways of developing e-content are being explored and modern modes of impactful delivery are being welcomed.
- Keeping in mind the effort and time it takes to develop a hard-hitting e-course, developers now aim to create content that is compatible with multiple devices and different operating systems. HTML5 is the preferred development software, which makes sure that e-content is accessible on all learner devices.
- Mobile web apps are built to provide the learners the opportunity to access the e-content through their mobile web browser. The easy and continuous availability of internet makes sure that the learners can access e-courses through the mobile app whenever they want.
- For users who may not have uninterrupted internet connections and thus are not be able to access a web-enabled learning solution, native apps are built that use the built-in features of operating systems different learner devices to make e-content accessible. These apps also allow the learners to download content onto their devices and read through them as per their convenience – making it possible to them learn even when offline.
- To deliver the same visual impact and ease of navigation across different screens and resolutions posed as a big challenge for delivery of e-content across multiple devices. To counter this challenge, developers are now adopting web-responsive design to create content that can not only be delivered across multiple devices but adapts automatically to suit the specifications of the viewing device. Development of e-content in HTML5 supports responsive design features so that the content developed has the same impact across the myriad of devices that the learners use.
Thus the scene is set for BYOD. For learners, it brings the benefit of continuous access to learning content. For organizations, it makes sure that training content is best utilized and the employees are trained to deliver. But along with the benefits, there are also a number of concerns that arise with the growing popularity of this trend. A top concern is that of security. Since BYOD allows learners to access enterprise level data at all times, it is necessary to make suitable allowances to make sure that the enterprise data cannot be transferred or shared with other devices by suitably encrypting the data. Unlike an office-issued laptop that has only a set of IT approved software, a personally-owned mobile device may have a number of apps downloaded. It is necessary to make sure that there is no exfiltration of data from one app to another and there is little or no data-flow between the various apps on a mobile device. Also, if the device is stolen or an employee leaves an organization, there has to be measures in place to ensure that organizational data in the device can be wiped off.
BYOD is more than just the ‘flavor of the month’- it is poised to take the learning industry by storm. To know more about our experiences with multiple-device delivery, write to [email protected]
Latest Post By Arunima Majumdar