While corporate trainers are well acquainted with the term 'microlearning,' other job functions like field services and operations who are actually responsible for field workers are better positioned to take advantage of it.
First, for those unfamiliar with the term microlearning it is when someone consumes small bits of content when they are facing a problem. It is a way of learning that is here to stay because it largely mirrors how people spend their time on digital devices.
Microlearning is often compared and contrasted with traditional online learning courses, but they really have two different use cases.
Deloitte Development refers to the latter as 'macro-learning' or learning something new. This is what most conventional training is, whether it takes place online or in the classroom. These are the courses and classes that people are familiar with that may take hours, days, or longer to complete. It is about concepts, principles, and practice. However, it pulls employees away from work, and it is often hard to measure the impact of the loss of productivity on the business.
Alternatively, microlearning is when someone says, "I need help now." This is the most common way people learn - at the exact place and time when they need to. For the learner the solution is fast and effective. All it takes is a short piece of media, like text or a 2-minute video, to solve the problem. For the company it is affordable, it reinforces the right knowledge and behaviors, and it can be delivered in their normal course of work.
So why isn't microlearning more widespread? Based on the merits it should have equal footing with conventional training. There are several reasons reasons.
It is hard to reach learners on the job. People are busy, and normally an LMS is not part of a person’s daily workflow. It is simply not one of the software tools that is core to their job description.
The content is not always relevant to the job at hand. Many traditional publishers simply dissect their longer courses and repackage a 5-minute clip to be ‘microlearning’ instead of creating something new.
Many of the tools to create relevant content are left in the hands of instructional designers rather than the experts who do the job. Not every microlearning course needs learning objectives. Sometimes a video clip showing the proper procedure will suffice.
When the platform and content are combined the result is usually nothing more than launching a web page. There is nothing to take advantage of the inherit benefits of native smartphone apps like location services, beacons, sensors, camera and consumer-like user experiences.
The PinPoint platform addresses all of these issues in a single, simple app. Field service and operational roles understand what the job takes and how to deliver microlearning for learning or performance support. They also have access to the greatest content developers available - their own experts. PinPoint enables you to engage your frontline workers for training, knowledge or task management when and where it is needed.