Learning Trends for 2022

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The post-pandemic pace of change continues to accelerate as the world and the economy rapidly becomes more digital than ever before. Workplaces also continue to shift and find their footing in this new normal with most organisations requiring a collaboration between remote workers and office workers.

Customers also have new expectations, as people are being forced to move away from in person activities to exclusively online. So what does this mean for learning and development and what can we expect to see in L&D in 2022?

Here are 8 trends to look out for this year.

1. Shift from physical to virtual space 

The pandemic has forced us all to work a different way with organisations having to go digital quickly. Because many organisations weren’t fully prepared for this, the past year has seen a boom in virtual instructor-led training.  We know this may sound like some futurist robot teacher, but virtual instruction can be things like learning videos, immersive learning like AR or VR as well as microlearning and gamification. In 2022 we don’t see this dying down, in fact we think even more organisations will use virtual instruction.  

79% of organisations will continue to shift budgets from instructor-led training to online -LinkedIn Learning 

This is down to a number of reasons but primarily can be attributed to the new remote working model adopted during the pandemic and which looks set to continue. 

2. Evolving 70:20:10 model 

For years the learning industry has been primarily following the 70:20:10 learning and development model. This states that individuals tend to learn 70% of their knowledge from challenging experiences and assignments, 20% from development relationships, and 10% from coursework and training. Although a proven method since the 1990’s, in 2022 we anticipate a shift to the 55:25:20 model breaking down learning into: 

  • 55% Experiential - scenario-based learning using watch-try-do simulations; 
  • 25% Social - online discussions boards, forums, user-generated content; and 
  • 20% Formal - eLearning, virtual instructor-led training. 

report from Training Industry Inc., based on data from nearly 1,500 working professionals, supports this new model. The model is particularly good for the blended learning approach allowing you to create interactive, and engaging training that can fulfil different training needs through different learning resources. 

3. Upskilling and reskilling 

These past nearly two years have seen the need for organisations to restructure in order to survive.  

51% of L&D professionals say internal mobility is more of a priority now than before COVID-19 -LinkedIn Learning 

 Upskilling and reskilling provide an opportunity for organisations to maximize employee potential and allow workers to keep their jobs by expanding their skills to different areas.  Employees will become more used to problem-solving to support demands from your market and within your industry, leveraging their skills to carry your organisation when tricky situations occur. 

4. Immersive Technology 

It’s estimated that 23 million jobs will use VR and AR by 2030. VR helps minimise the gap between theory and practical application. It offers unlimited possibilities since the immersive learning environment can be tailored to pretty much anything you need. VR allows learners to observe and learn things that could be missed in traditional training methods, or be unsafe to perform in real life. Also, gone are the days where VR was only used by big multi-million dollar companies - our VR tool eNetReality gives you everything you need to create and deliver your own VR learning and Assessments without the need to code.  

5. From only in a classroom to online 

In 2022 we will see even more training programs that were previously only delivered in a face-to-face, physical classroom setting, being moved to online delivery.  

Examples of the kinds of training that are likely to move online include: 

  • Onboarding 
  • Technical training  
  • Leadership training 

Traditionally onboarding has been a blended learning experience but we are seeing more and more organisations opting for a virtual onboarding process. This allows flexibility for the learner and is especially useful for organisations with a dispersed workforce.   

Technical training normally requires supervision but with the use of 360 video, demo videos to showcase products, talking heads introducing new processes and VR or AR, you have the ability to distribute in-depth tutorials easily. 

We are also seeing leadership training moving to digital with the use of real videos. Examples of this include senior members of staff, experts handling equipment, and illustrated videos showing process and user-generated content, such as your top performer demonstrating something they do well. We’re also seeing virtual workshops for skill-building, online forums as well as podcasts delivered by experts. 

6. The modern training manager toolkit 

The role of the manager has never been so important, in particular the key role they play in selecting and helping implement the right software – something which looks set to continue in 2022. Knowing what works for your business and your learners is a must and will require you to do some research. There may also be a need for you to upskill yourself, especially when moving to a more virtual way of doing things.  

7. Design team and rapid outsourcing 

Even organisations that are lucky enough to have an in-house design team have now seen the benefit of outsourcing, allowing their internal team to work on high-priority projects. This trend will continue in 2022. Outsourcing also allows access to authoring tool expertise you may not have in house and gives you more scope to work with new potential clients.

 8. Hybrid working 

Hybrid working, where employees split their time between the workplace and working remotely, is here to stay. The hybrid working model relies on empathy-based management, empowering your workforce to choose how they can best maximise their contribution to your organisation, then trusting them to deliver. Key benefits include better performance, greater innovation and equality: a recent Gartner survey, with five thousand employees worldwide, indicated a 40% performance increase when flexibility was introduced. 

For L&D, the challenge is to ensure the same learning opportunities are available to everyone across the organisation, regardless of where they work. Digital learning is perfectly suited for this, helping you provide anytime, anywhere upskilling opportunities for your people, so they can contribute effectively to the organisational goals. 

Going forward into 2022 and beyond 

Ultimately the key thing that will help you prepare for 2022 and beyond, is to take the time to define your strategic learning goals, ensuring these are connected to your people and aligned with your business – something we’re happy to help with. 

We’ve been digital learning and assessment leaders for over 25 years and have helped a wide array of clients, advising on implementation and development of their learning strategy. If you would like to find out more about how we can help you, please do contact us. You can also head over to our resource section for a handy infographic.

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