For businesses and their HR leaders, the task of attracting and cultivating the best talent from the jobs market is of the utmost importance. With this in mind, it’s unsurprising that investment in corporate training initiatives is ramping up each year.
The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc with recruitment models and how companies hire and onboard employees. With more job roles than ever becoming remote, the onus is on businesses to adapt their processes and to accommodate workers who may never meet their managers or colleagues in person.
In a landscape that’s been disrupted by the pandemic, more businesses are turning to emerging technologies like AI and big data to streamline their onboarding process and to provide comprehensive training for new starters.
As the data shows, spending on artificial intelligence and machine learning increased by 62% between 2019 and 2020, showing how highly decision-makers regard the technology – with only cloud services seeing more of an inflow of money over the same period.
With this in mind, it’s very likely that we’ll see more AI-driven training programmes from companies looking to better onboard staff as they adapt to more remote environments. The beauty of AI is that it has the power to tap into many other concentrations like big data, augmented reality and virtual reality to provide fully immersive experiences for staff.
As more businesses look to prepare for a future in remote employee training, we’re beginning to see more trends emerging within the development of technologies to improve the learning process for workers outside of the office. Let’s take a deeper look into the application of AI and big data in the world of remote training:
Using AI to Identify Employee Needs
Performance analysis can help to indicate where training may be needed within a business, whether it looks at specific job roles, teams or the needs of individual employees. By tapping into these insights, you’ll then be capable of exploring options to determine the skills and topics that should be covered and find the most appropriate training programs to suit your workers.
There is a wide range of approaches that can be used in this regard – whether you take training on an individual basis, or split teams into groups based on their individual metrics. Here, it’s important to assess your options and to select the type of training that’s best suited to your employee abilities, respective work schedules and your own corporate needs. Teaching skills and information can also require purchasing or preparing the materials required. This can become a blend of printed or digital documents, visual aids, technologies and tools. Big data insights can help to guide you towards the right purchases in this regard.
How AI Can Revolutionise Remote Employee Training
In the brave new world of remote work, it’s essential for employees to be made to feel comfortable and connected with their companies in terms of both values and objectives. For this to be achieved, greater levels of engagement are essential – and this is where AI can offer excellent value.
AI-infused employee training platforms help to offer greater automation, personalisation, data insights and long-term sustainability than it was possible to imagine before the pandemic began. AI can offer better insights from big data within the employee training platforms that can deliver a greater deal of adaptability and personalisation for workers. One platform that’s already making moves in this field is the Learning Experience Platform (LXP).
In an age where a continuous flow of digital disruptions are widening worker skill gaps, AI can bring many benefits in the reskilling and upskilling of employees that can actively work alongside the remote training process. Organisations need to look to AI to not only identify the skill gaps created by digital proliferation but also to help close them by automatically recommending required skilling courses and programs to employees. For businesses, this results in not only a more adaptive workforce but also a future-proofed one.
With AI, learning and development professionals can gain a greater understanding of learner behaviour and can help to create learning pathways to improve the learning experience. Using this form of predictive analytics, organisations can develop smarter learning content that is both intuitive and responsive to the individual’s learning journey. AI will transform how content gets delivered while encouraging the retention of accumulated knowledge.
AI learning solutions can help to track and measure the progress of new employees or workers who require refresher courses. They can also provide better insights for retention and understanding so that learning and development professionals can revise and adapt their programs accordingly. With AI, it’s possible to access critical insights on the preferred time and place of effective learning while also providing feedback on increasing learning productivity. Data insights, like course completion times, content preferences and learning modes can help businesses to constantly review any flaws in their training models.
Another reason why AI training will become essential can be found in its potential for eliminating bias. For instance, when a manager is asked to assign training for team members, there can be an instinctive human bias that can instil leniency towards certain employees. While this can be an unconscious bias, it can lead to poorer learning and productivity in some employees – resulting in lost earnings for the company. AI eliminates prejudice and bias by relying only on data to generate recommendations best suited to the goals of the business.
Immersive & Adaptive Lessons
Existing technology can help to expand and continue the learning process from employee to employee to better ensure the effective training of new employees.
Artificial intelligence can also assist in the transfer of skills from one generation of workers to the next, as existing employees move to new companies or eventually retire. This can help to ensure that they’re able to leave behind the valuable experiences that they’re gained for others to benefit from them – as well as take it with them as part of their progression.
For instance, employees can wear AR headsets while carrying out their daily tasks. The technology they use captures a record of what the engineer does using image recognition technology, which can be played back to allow trainees and new hires alike to experience their new role or gain refreshers through the help of reality technology.
Information from the video imagery can also be used to create augmented tools that can offer real-time feedback while engineers carry out their job – alerting them to emerging dangers or reminding them to carry out their scheduled tasks.
As data shows, the augmented reality market is set to continue growing at a CAGR of 40.29% – making the development of new immersive training technologies and tools inevitable over the coming years.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s likely that we’ll see new hardware entering the market with a heavier purpose of aiding the output of remote workers.
The future influx of the next generation of augmented eyewear – which looks set to begin in 2022 – will lead to an increased prevalence of AR glasses which will pave the way for greater levels of adoption and potentially tap into a massive market, which is set to increase to $210.8 billion by 2025.
Adaptive Online Assessments
Tests, quizzes and assessments will be imperative to remote online learning. They can help to consolidate the learning process and measure the effectiveness of corporate training programmes. However, one limitation of the majority of these assessments in existence today is the one-size-fits-all approach that they take.
The tests are typically developed along the line of the best fit to ensure that the majority of tests are suitable for all learners regardless of their capabilities. This indicates that some learners could find tests too simplistic or too complex depending on their aptitude levels.
This will be a significant problem when onboarding remote employees because in home-based working environments it’s much more difficult to spot when a new recruit is showing signs of struggling or when they complete their training early.
Artificial intelligence enables us to create adaptive assessments that can go beyond static Q&A formats. AI has the ability to assess individual competence and calculate progression paths – tailoring the subsequent course content based on the results of individual assessments.
One key trend of 2021 and 2022 will be the development of more remote work-focused AI training systems, as tech companies shift their focus from the task of complex engineering and high-risk job training and towards aiding companies that are looking to become more remote in the wake of the pandemic.
In a world that’s driven by work-from-home business models, AI and big data will form a powerful partnership in ensuring that the onboarding process will remain as slick as ever while generating adaptive learning modules that employers have never been able to benefit from before. It’s certain that the coming years are going to be bright for the digital transformation of businesses across the world.