As technology continues to disrupt work, the nature of the workplace has changed dramatically in the last few years, compelling organizations to rethink their earlier strategies on how to engage and retain their talented workforce. Our teams at Tricon have been observing the trends in ed tech over the past few years and we’ve seen that many companies are now looking to incorporate mobile learning as an integral and important component of their employee training process.

According to Cisco, the US market for mobile learning is expected to grow to $37.6 billion by 2020, with approximately 47 percent of organizations using mobile learning as a key component of their employee training prorams.

Some of the factors driving this include increased use of smartphones and other mobile devices, greater digital connectivity, and a rising need for on-demand training opportunities at the workplace. Mobile learning also allows companies to assess the skill levels of employees by tracking their usage of the training material available on these learning platforms.

Millennials power the workforce

A recent PwC report titled Workplace of the Future, says that millennials will make up 50 percent of the workplace by 2020. Companies are now seeing that the career goals and aspirations of millennials vastly differ from that of Generation X or the Baby Boomers. 74 percent are willing to undergo continuous training on the job or learn new skills to stay employable. In fact, millennials expect and demand that the workplace offer them suitable training opportunities rather than the usual perks like flex hours or the use of a company car (KPCB report, 2015).

“Millennials expect that the workplace offer them suitable training opportunities over the usual perks.”

Millennials are tethered to smartphones, which means the phone is within reach always. They want to be able to access their learning anywhere, 24/7, and on the device they are most comfortable with – the mobile phone. They also tend to use desktops less frequently, making mobile learning the most effective way to reach this audience. They can brush up on essential skills while commuting or even after a day’s work, as more and more people tend to be continually engaged with their smartphones right up to the time they sleep.

Teams are on-the-go

As more workers work remotely or are on the go, like sales professionals, it becomes increasingly expensive for companies to get them to attend an on-site full-day in-person training program. M-learning presents content in bite-sized chunks that are easy to navigate and use while on-the-go. Many companies have largely mobile and remote working teams and m-learning effectively reaches out to all target audiences without losses in productivity. Mobile learning cuts down on study time and the nature and gamification of the content allows users to gain skills rapidly, as compared to desktop or in-person instruction.

Continuous learning is the new reality

As technology continues to evolve, companies know that their survival depends on a team that is well qualified and up-to-date. HR and Learning & Development professionals are using m-learning programs as an important component of their training to keeps their teams on track with changing technology and industry trends, staying ahead of the competition.  According to the Ambient Insight 2012-2017 Worldwide Mobile Learning Market Report, 74 percent of people now actively use mobile devices for e-learning. The convenience and accessibility of mobile learning allows learners to engage with the information on-demand.

Designing for mobile encourages learning and development professionals to consider the most important snippets of information and how best to ensure a great user experience. Our research and work with clients in m-learning has shown that play continues to be the best way to learn for people across age groups. At Tricon we’ve successfully used our very own trademarked framework to build delightful learning applications for our clients that ensure better engagement, knowledge retention and application by end users.

Additional research indicates that companies now rank mobile learning among the top three business development priorities next to seamless business alignment and data mining. Companies that aggressively adopt mobile learning and e-learning platforms have shown that they have responded well to industry upheavals and marketplace changes, reporting actual business growth and better results. For businesses that want to thrive in an increasingly competitive environment, mobile learning is a strategy that they cannot afford to ignore.