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6 reasons to try microlearning at your company

Microlearning is the wave of the future and it can save companies time and money. Here are six reasons to try microlearning at your company.

In the modern world everything is getting smaller: Cell phones fit comfortably in the palm of your hand, computers are shrinking to the size of a watch thanks to companies like Apple, even the news is getting smaller with the 140-character Twitter headline replacing a full-length story for many people. It's only natural that the shrinking continues into other areas of our lives like learning. 

The rise of computers gave us the eLearning revolution, with the kind of training that used to require going to a seminar or a class being replaced by a YouTube video or online course. But now eLearning is getting smaller still with the rise of microlearning. Though the exact definition is in flux, microlearning generally refers to small pieces of information that can be presented in 15 minutes or less (sometimes as little as five minutes).

Microlearning is effective, especially in light of data that says that traditional classroom learning may not be as effective as we have been led to believe. According to Information Age, the old style of learning is inefficient as one hour of classroom instruction takes between 43 and 185 hours to generate and prepare. It's also ineffective, as 80 percent of classroom participants forget what they have learned within 30 days of the lesson.

Microlearning is the wave of the future and it can save a business time and money. Here are six reasons to try microlearning at your company:

Microlearning is more effective than traditional methods.
Microlearning is more effective than traditional methods.

1. It puts the power in the hands of the learner
Mobile has eclipsed the desktop worldwide as the preferred method of getting online and using a computer, The Next Web contributor Nathan Bernard reported. Easily digested pieces of information that can be delivered and viewed anytime and anywhere make it easier for employees to get just what they need at times and in places that work for them. The modern employee can and will digest training modules while in line at a coffee shop, at their desk at work on a traditional computer, or on their tablet at home while they eat dinner. Microlearning facilitates that.

2. It adapts to today's user
Today's employees have shorter and shorter attention spans. According to Bernard, the average attention span is just eight seconds. Asking an employee to spend hours working on a training course is unrealistic and ineffective. With smaller, more bite-sized training materials there is less time for their attention to wander.

3. It keeps topics separate
Millennials passed baby boomers as the largest cohort of employees in the workforce in 2015{,} Information Age reported. Thanks to a life spent in the digital age, they learn differently. Millennials prefer small, more easily digested chunks of information that they can easily get their heads around and they don't mind repetition. With microlearning the employee can focus on a single topic for a short period of time in order to be certain that they understand and absorb it before they move onto the next topic. This type of learning can cut down on confusion and information overload that typically comes with classroom learning.

"It is much easier to keep your employees up to date with a microlearning."

4. Ease of updating
Information in a training module can be updated to respond to the changing needs of a company. As that information changes, it is much easier and more cost-effective to keep your employees up to date with a microlearning system. With information broken down into small, discrete chunks, its easy and cheap to remove and update one small piece as opposed to having to replace a whole classroom lecture or long-form employee training manual.

5. A sense of accomplishment
According to Information Age, Millennial employees are looking for ongoing coaching and positive feedback in order to improve their job satisfaction rates. With small, quickly digested modules they get just that. Employees get a tangible sense that they are making progress when they finish one module and move onto the next. That sense of accomplishment acts as motivation to keep the employee learning and invested in the training.

6. It makes reviewing a breeze
If a user is struggling with one specific task or a portion of the material, microlearning can help. The bite-sized nature of the information presented means that it's easy to go back and focus on exactly what a user needs to review without having to sift through an hour of classroom content or pages and pages of PDFs. 

Corporate Learning & Performance

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