The conventional instructor-led training restricts the learners within a classroom setting. Today, organizations realize the potential of delivering e-learning experiences to boost employee engagement, retention and workplace productivity. Earlier, the social capabilities of Learning Management Systems (LMSs) were not so useful, because no one knew how to deploy and support them. It was assumed that trainers would access social spaces at regular intervals and interact with the learners, keeping e-courses updated all the time. But in reality, content lacked learners’ engagement and became boring. Today, LMS vendors are shifting towards social media platforms to leverage the benefits of social learning for the modern workforce.
In today’s digital era, social learning has become an integral part of LMS to improve employee collaboration and knowledge competency. A myriad of social learning features that are supported by modern LMSs are discussed as follows:
● Unique profile- Employees enter their personal information so that they can get to know each other and communicate better. They can create their own profiles and track their performance status via an LMS.
● Mobile support- Mobile users want to access personalized e-learning courses anytime and from anywhere. An e-learning platform enables the learners to see news feeds of others and actively respond, thereby establishing a better communication.
● Email notifications- An LMS also supports the email notification feature which aligns the learners with relevant e-courses they need to access. Learners can also set their own notifications to connect with their peers while learning.
● Live chat- This feature allows the learners to chat with each other as well as discuss queries with online tutors. In addition, users can create chat groups to work as a team and together solve varied learning challenges.
● Gamification- On successful achievement of a level during training, employees gain recognition in the form of badges, points and scores. The LMS provides a leaderboard which tracks individual scores and performance status. Gamification enables the learners to undergo training as a team, leading to better employee engagement and social interaction.
● Social media support- Online learning platforms enable learners to share their learning experience across social media platforms including Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and more.
Benefits of Social Learning for Modern Workforce
Social learning can take place in various informal ways among the employees to address real-time issues. The prime objective for the organizations is to foster continuous learning culture, in which the employees can share new ideas, solve problems, engage more and improve their performance across the enterprise. Social learning helps to bridge the gaps between informal and formal workplace instruction by offering the following benefits:
● Delivering self-paced learning experience which enables the learners to undergo training as per their own convenience, thereby driving optimum learner engagement.
● Sharing online courses, posts, conversation forums and external content with other users.
● Providing a powerful platform where employees can learn as individuals as well as in groups to share their learning experiences.
● Accessing e-courses across personalized mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones, anytime and anywhere.
● Getting courses and content recommendations specific to each user’s profile history and individual performance.
● Because of the familiarity with the Navigation, Like and Comment features on Facebook, Twitter and other social media websites, learners can access e-courses with ease.
The transformation from social media to social learning has enabled the organizations to boost workplace development and meet diverse organizational goals. Today, social learning is largely affected by technology-aided platforms and will continue to evolve, keeping learners more engaged and productive. Different social learning opportunities are added to modern LMSs to cater to the customized learning needs. The benefits of social learning at workplace outweigh other types of e-learning strategies and therefore it is crucial for businesses to invest in such practices to maximize your investments.
Suggested Further Reading: https://bloomfire.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/WP-Social-Learning-0515-WEB.pdf