TL;DR: Pervasive computing and data-driven devices are transforming our lives and workplaces. It’s a fundamental shift requiring adaptation and innovation. Organizations must transform their L&D strategies to remain competitive in the evolving market landscape.
The Technological Revolution Shaping Our World
We find ourselves in an era defined by a profound technological revolution, reshaping our world and the way we interact with it. Pervasive computing and data-driven devices are at the forefront of this revolution, seamlessly integrated into our daily lives.
The Expanding Reach of the Online World
Consider the striking comparison between the computer automation era of the 1990s and the present day. Back then, less than 445,000 people were online. Today, approximately 3.6 billion people, roughly half of the world’s population, are connected online. This monumental shift not only provides access to a diverse talent pool in the gig economy but also places new demands on organizational learning functions.
The Rise of Automation and Data-Driven Devices
The next wave of automation, driven by artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced technologies, has led to the emergence of pervasive or ubiquitous computing. Many of us rely on devices like Fitbit, iWatch, or Garmin to guide and enhance our lifestyles based on the insights they provide. With over 8.6 billion such devices globally, projected to exceed 26 billion in the next 18 months, our dependence on data-driven devices is rapidly growing.
Adapting to the Changing Workforce Dynamics
As the workforce undergoes a transformation from humans to augmented humans and, eventually, to robots and algorithms, the challenge lies in effectively integrating these changes to deliver high-quality employee experiences and retain crucial talent. Modern employees seek personalized, contextual, and relevant learning experiences that offer immediate feedback. Addressing these needs requires a paradigm shift in Learning & Development (L&D) strategies.
Revamping the Learning & Development Strategy
The revamped L&D strategy should strive to achieve sustainable behavior change faster while providing increased value. This shift also necessitates a reevaluation of the metrics used to assess learning functions. Instead of solely measuring outputs or tangible creations, the focus should shift towards measuring outcomes.
Harnessing the Power of Tools for Learning
Fortunately, the same forces reshaping the workplace, workforce, and the nature of work also equip us with powerful tools to enhance the learning function. For example, Coach M, an Australian AI entity, offers scalable one-on-one coaching at a minimal cost, presenting transformative possibilities for organizations. Additionally, AI tools like Otto serve as training assistants, facilitating onboarding and knowledge sharing. Furthermore, performance algorithms are now integrated into our productivity tools, as exemplified by the recent announcement from Microsoft Ignite regarding the open data source exchange between Microsoft, SAP, and Adobe. This partnership is poised to significantly revolutionize our approach to data analysis and build upon the ongoing discussions surrounding people analytics. Leveraging artificial intelligence for instructional design and delivery is also a promising avenue. This transformative shift requires a transformation in mindset, skill set, and toolset.
Embracing Learning in the Digital Era
In conclusion, the ongoing technological revolution demands that we adapt and reshape our learning functions to thrive in the digital era. By embracing the changes brought about by pervasive computing, data-driven devices, and AI tools, organizations can provide personalized and impactful learning experiences. With a revised L&D strategy focused on sustainable behavior change and outcome measurement, companies can unlock the full potential of their workforce and navigate the evolving landscape of work successfully.