Employee engagement , training and education are more important than ever. Employees stay with companies for an average of 4.2 years, a figure that has been dropping for decades. The technological, cultural, and regulatory landscape changes frequently and businesses that don’t adapt fail to thrive. Employee training is vital to productivity and stability in an environment where people, tools, and standards change often.
Yet 40% of executives who lead employee training initiatives believe that their efforts are ineffective. More than 60% of employees are disengaged from their jobs because they don’t understand how their roles relate to the greater goals of their employer. They lack purpose and the context that can provide meaning.
Where do employee engagement and retention initiatives go wrong?
- Lack of interactivity. Employees learn best by interaction rather than being presented to.
- Low-adoption rates of employee’s preferred information channels. A well-made PowerPoint presentation is a powerful communication tool, but every employee has in their pocket a mobile device that they use hundreds of times a day, that they know intimately, and that offers fantastic engagement and learning opportunities.
- Information gets lost in the noise. Information overload drowns out non-urgent information. We are deluged with data and we have become adept at ignoring information that is not perceived as immediately useful, including emails, memos, bulletins, and the content of less-than-enthralling PowerPoint presentations.
The solution? Use technology to create educational and training experiences that are always available, relevant, engaging, and measurable.
A mobile application is always available. Employees can engage with content and learn when it is convenient for them. Manuals, guidelines, training courses, and more can be made available and accessed as they are needed. Push notifications informing employees of updates are less likely to be ignored than an email with a PDF or PowerPoint attachment.
Employees are engaged by mobile applications already. We pick up our phones hundreds or thousands of times a day. They consume a huge amount of our mental bandwidth. Apps are engaging because they are relevant: they deliver the information we need when we need it.
Training provider can leverage that built-in engagement to provide relevant and interesting information to employees. Fresh content can be pushed to apps and existing content can be modified as requirements change.
Augmented Reality and artificially intelligent object recognition are among the most interesting emerging technologies for encouraging engagement with training content and employee communications.
Imagine safety training courses that use AR to superimpose health and safety interactions into an office or manufacturing environment. Or a gamified training experience that uses AR and object recognition to guide employees through an induction.
Forward-looking organizations have incorporated AR, computer vision, and machine learning into training and educational apps in industries as diverse as energy and utilities, marketing and sales, healthcare, industrial design, retail, tourism, and manufacturing.
Peter Drucker once wrote that “if you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.’ Measurement is difficult for traditional employee engagement and training content, but mobile applications are eminently amenable to measurement and analysis. It is possible to precisely track engagement with content, and that empowers businesses to run tests, see what works and what doesn’t, and iteratively improve engagement outcomes.
Mobile apps, augmented and virtual reality, and artificial intelligence are powerful tools for encouraging and measuring employee engagement. If you want to learn more about how your business can leverage mobile technologies to improve employee engagement and retention, get in touch today for a free consultation