The past decade or so has seen a tremendous explosion in the technology being used within the HR industry. Internet and web-based platforms are nearly ubiquitous now, and one area that has benefited greatly from this technologization has been training.
Companies want to find training solutions that can deliver the most knowledge to the greatest number of employees as effectively as possible. With this in mind, it stands to reason that e-learning software and Internet-based courses have become wildly popular in recent years. Another area of growth gaining popularity is mobile technology, offering HR professionals and managers yet another avenue for developing and disseminating learning materials.
A Mobilizing World.
Just as the Internet found its way into every office in the U.S. while growing in ubiquity around the country, so too is mobile technology slipping into offices and consumer pockets simultaneously. In fact, there are few technology sectors that are growing more quickly. According to the Pew Research Center, around 58 percent of adults already own a smartphone. This number is expected to skyrocket over the next several years, rising from 144.5 million owners in 2013 to an estimated 220 million by 2018. According to MobileStatistics.com, there are more iPhones sold everyday than there are babies born. With over 1 million apps available for download, many smartphone users are constantly plugged into their devices.
This is evidenced further by MediaBistro, which reported that 79 percent of people keep their smartphones with them up to 22 hours a day, with 80 percent claiming they check their phone within 15 minutes of waking up in the morning. What is clear is that we’re moving into a period when mobile technology such as smartphones and tablets are a major form, if not the primary form, of media consumption for most of us. The question facing companies is how can this be leveraged for training purposes?
Where Mobile And HR Meet.
Some HR professionals have taken advantage of the popularity of mobile technology, providing new and customized training experiences for their employees that are accessible to them through the platforms they use the most. Of course, this type of development is still fairly new to the industry, and many organizations have yet to catch on. For example, Train By Cell noted that less than one-third of companies surveyed currently offer learning materials delivered via mobile technology. This isn’t due to any inherent failing of the format, on the contrary, mobile learning opportunities are nearly limitless. Rather, many companies still view mobile as something of a new frontier, and have been tentative about integrating it into their current training systems.
The good news is that mobile technology can be used to perform nearly any required HR function, from recruiting to training to benefits administration. VentureBeat outlined some of the more prominent examples, such as Jobvite, a program that allows companies to manage and post job listings over mobile. Candidates can then in turn respond to these postings via mobile – an increasingly important benefit in an age where mobile technology is quickly becoming the primary method of online consumption.
Training offers another area in which companies can benefit significantly from porting their learning systems to a more mobile paradigm. As Train By Cell noted, offering mobile learning software is more than simply taking existing online courses and putting them onto a smartphone or tablet. To get the most out of your mobile learning solution, companies need to line up the implementation with the inherent benefits of the platform. For example, mobile naturally facilitates collaboration and social learning, so those developing mobile training apps should keep this property in mind.
For more information on mobile learning, visit Boost HQ.