Hybrid Work is Here (and There)

hybrid remote workWelcome to summer. It’s probably safe to say that it’s one like we’ve never experienced before. Emerging from social restrictions and travel difficulties, many people are very happy to be out and about this season! Things feel the same but different, no? In other words, a lot has changed in our social and cultural lives.

What else has changed? The elusive modern information worker. We’re hybrid now. Some of us work from home all of the time, some part of the time. But for information workers, we have new parameters. The old days are over and I for one say that’s good. However, it does mean that learning protocols need to hurry up and meet the moment.

Never before have needs changed so quickly and expectations advanced so dramatically. The approaches learning and development (L&D) departments formerly used to connect with learners may no longer capture their hearts and more importantly, their minds. For example, if your LMS is clunky and siloed, or if your learning content is outdated and built entirely in slides – it’s time to let go of these remnants of the past.

How Hybrid Work Affects Learning

You can build the most engaging, effective, elaborate learning programs on Earth, but no one will get to enjoy them, if they don’t know the courses exist, regardless of whether they’re working in a traditional office or at home or elsewhere. One of the major pain points for L&D pros is the challenge of getting learners to proactively access the LMS, seeking new courses. Sadly, this can mean spending precious time (and serious budget) on eLearning that the intended audience never sees.

For training to have any impact at all, learners need first to know about it, and second, to be inspired to engage with it (again, regardless of their location). L&D must pull a page out of the marketing handbook and promote their programs. Beyond simply raising awareness about training, you can take it a step further and campaign with gusto. Build excitement by highlighting the benefits of the courses. Show them what’s in it for them and you’ll soon have a community of eager learners, consuming what’s available and asking for what’s coming next.

Especially to communicate to at-home workers, who may start to feel disconnected from the organization, your promotion of training has meaning. It brings people in. It reminds them that they are included and important.

Where’s the There There?

As we recently wrote in an article about Bleisure Travel as well as in a webinar about remote work, the challenge goes beyond just reaching at-home workers. Now, training departments must also think about the reality that people are perhaps less likely to be sitting at a desk with the usual computer set-up in front of them. In fact, they may be in a car, on a train, in a restaurant, etc. while doing training.

So, what does that mean for how we create and deliver training?

Mobile, mobile, mobile.

It’s not a new story. In order to deliver training to people wherever their “there” is, you need to have a “mobile first” approach. This is neither groundbreaking nor innovative at this point. It’s just the way of the world and that’s not going to change. Your learners expect (rightfully so) to be able to train from anywhere, on any device. Yet, the statistics we see from analysts show that many companies still aren’t doing it from an eLearning perspective.

As we respond to one of the major outcomes of the COVID pandemic — a significant increase in the remote workforce — and embrace the reality that instructor-led classrooms were pretty much taken out of the mix during the past two years, it becomes clear that now is the time to reassess how people are returning to the workplace and what kinds of training will work effectively for both on-site and remote workers. This new dynamic presents a host of synchronicity, communication, and collaboration challenges.

If you’d like to learn more about this topic and add your voice to the conversation, please join us for a live webinar on July 19th for Creating and Delivering Highly Engaging Learning in a Hybrid Work Environment. We’d be thrilled for you to interact and take this topic further.

But wait, there’s more ;). To see a recorded webinar on this topic, please watch Remote Possibilities: Training in a Hybrid World, hosted by a few of Litmos’ finest experts. You’ll learn and be entertained, which is how we like to do it. Enjoy!