As I noted in the first post in this series, banks’ employees come into the workplace expecting as much convenience from the work experience as they get from mobile apps and social tools in their personal lives. When it comes to learning and development, they no longer want to choose from a rigid menu of classroom courses.

Instead, they want training to be as social and personalized as their experience with the apps they use on their smartphones. Not only do they expect training to be customized to their needs, they are increasingly seeking options to learn from their co-workers, to learn as they work and to access learning materials at any time or place it is necessary or convenient. That implies that digital learning should be:

  • Omnichannel—allowing employees to learn on any channel that meets their needs. Training can start in a classroom and finish on a mobile device. Learning platforms and content are moving to the cloud so that they are available everywhere.

  • Contextual— quick-learning nuggets are made available at the point of need, even if that is as a call center agent helps a customer with complex query about his mortgage.

  • Gamified—gamification principles enrich the experience by reinforcing and incentivizing learning.

  • Data-driven—HR uses analytics to encourage members of the workforce to align learning with business needs and impact.

  • Driven through an ecosystem—banks should leverage an extended value chain to deliver high performance learning. They can partner with start-ups, business schools, universities and other institutions to offer rich content and learning experience.

  • Social—employees are encouraged to rate, follow, share and comment on content as they share learning experiences.

Digital learning can help to improve both employee satisfaction and performance. Many financial institutions are already finding ways to use digital technology to offer personalized learning to their workforces at great scale.

Massive online open courses (MOOCs) are making training scalable, while communication tools such as Slack are fostering collaboration and learning as a way of life. And predictive workforce analytics allow organizations to make better decisions about their training strategies.

Ping An Insurance of China, for example, won a Gold Award from the Brandon Hall Group for a large-scale pilot mobile-learning program that delivered hundreds of mobile courses within one year. The program, which utilized a platform jointly developed by Accenture, is an innovative and cost effective way to serve not just employees of the Ping An group but also 200-plus partner companies.

A financial institution in the UK, meanwhile leveraged gaming and social psychology to build new skills, sustain change management, and boost key behaviors in a 30-day challenge program. Teams received a daily challenge in a mobile app created for the program and could track their performance compared to other teams.

In my next post, I’ll look at digital career management.

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