5 ways to maximise a shrinking training budget

5 Ways to Maximize a Shrinking Training Budget

1.Go Mobile

Let’s assume that 80% of your employees have a smartphone. This is your talent development secret weapon. Firewall woes? Your company firewall may prevent PCs from accessing the rich content available in the industry that fosters ongoing learning. Mobile to the rescue!

Mobile learning has become increasingly more relevant to corporate training. Outside the confines of the classroom – educational apps provide professionals with the flexibility to choose what they learn and when!

Mobile learning provides personalized ‘bite-sized’ materials that suit modern lifestyles and learning patterns. For example, BankersLab Banc-it apps allow busy executives to test their knowledge or prep for our courses, referring back to key content when required. By having the materials at their fingertips, learners can focus on developing critical skills in the classroom – and keep them sharp when back at their desk.

2. Social Networking

Social networks don’t have to be a no-no in the office. You can use a closed LinkedIn, Facebook or other social networking platforms to foster knowledge exchange and discussions. Think that Pinterest is only for lifestyle? Think again. Pinners include digital libraries on Gamification, The Future of Banking and Banking innovation and technology.

3. Crowdsource knowledge.

Staff cuts?  Your training team may not have the bandwidth to find and share articles and resources through these channels. Crowdsource it! Once you get a few senior people onboard sharing compelling articles and their favorite information sources, others will follow. Your team can lead the charge by setting up Springpads, Pinterest boards and other information aggregation platforms, and let things evolve within the organization.

4. Gamify it!

Still worried about motivating employees to participate in the ongoing learning, social sharing and crowdsourcing? Gamify it! You don’t have to splurge on a state of the art gamified Learning Management System (LMS). Try cheap and cheerful first; monitor your chosen sharing platforms, keep track of the biggest contributors based on a few different metrics (most articles posted, most comments on an article) and announce those standings.

Don’t like playing games in the office? The gamified classroom isn’t about trivializing content, it’s about taking the essential ingredients of a game and applying them to real-world, non-game situations. By introducing game mechanics such as rules, challenges and rewards for achievements, we can not only increase the fun factor, but most importantly learners are motivated by their desire to win. Deloitte’s leadership academy is an effective example of how gamification can be integrated into a corporate learning program.

5. Embrace ‘sticky’ learning innovations

When you are evaluating how to spend the budget you fought so hard for, focus on sticky learning. By adopting a blended learning approach you can use tools such as numerical simulation to optimize the effectiveness of any program. Numerical simulations, for example, immerse the learner in a virtual world, allowing them to put theoretical knowledge to the test within a safe environment. According to the American Federation of scientists, the use of simulations boosts a learner’s knowledge retention to 90%, versus 30% when they see visuals related to what they hear e.g. traditional PowerPoint training.