Posted by Josh Haims on July 16, 2014
When I discuss learning evaluation and how to measure the impact of investments made in development with business leaders, everyone seems to agree: How learning effectiveness is evaluated and communicated today is not working and should be completely rethought based on the transformation going on in corporate learning environments. Let’s talk about what’s happening — I’d like to get your thoughts as well.
The corporate learning landscape is dramatically different from the way it was even 5 years ago. Classroom-based, instructor-led training has given way to new forms of collaborative, on-demand learning driven by:
LMS developers are getting the message, and we’ve been seeing a lot of progress in improving both the learner experience and learning administration. We’re also getting better and more sophisticated about using data and analytics to generate suggestions and recommendations for users (just as many commercial websites do) based on a host of factors ranging from their profile (knowledge, skills, certifications) to what communities they belong to and their behaviors online (searches, interests, ratings).
With these changes to the learning environment as a backdrop, we arrive at our dilemma: Tried and true learning evaluation methodology, including the longtime gold standard, the Kirkpatrick method, isn’t designed for how learning is happening today. These more linear, classroom-focused models are outdated in today’s much more fluid environment, and we’re rethinking how we measure learning effectiveness as a result.
A few new models have emerged to try to fill the gap, including Bersin by Deloitte’s High-Impact Learning Measurement and the Center for Talent Reporting’s Talent Development Reporting Principles. But as yet, there’s no definitive, widely used replacement for the Kirkpatrick model.
So where does that leave L&D professionals? How do you measure the effectiveness of your L&D investments? How do you measure the development ecosystem that is breaking beyond the boundaries of the corporate intranet — and the boundaries of what can be tracked and reported? I’d like to hear your thoughts and learn more about how your organization is thinking about and acting on this challenge.
Some conversation starters:
We’re not suggesting formal learning is dead or that we do away with measuring the impact of some learning courses. But given the current learning environment, there has to be something else, too. Let’s talk about it. I look forward to reading your comments and insights and keeping the discussion going.
|Josh Haims is a principal in the Human Capital practice of Deloitte Consulting LLP, with more than 14 years of human capital consulting experience. He leads Deloitte’s Learning Solutions practice and is the co-lead of the global Learning Services team.|
3Bersin by Deloitte, Mobile Learning is Finally Going Mainstream, 3/2011; ASTD, Going Mobile, 6/2013
5Bersin by Deloitte, Corporate Learning Factbook 2013, 1/2013
6McKinsey Global Institute/International Data Corporation, The Social Economy, 7/2012