Nikolas Kairinos, Founder and CEO, Soffos
In the new era of working from home, never has our reliance on technology been so pronounced. Globally, businesses are successfully adapting their day-to-day working practices to suit this shift, with Zoom meetings and Slack becoming the norm. However, for many, grappling with learning and development (L&D) poses a significant issue.
In the current climate, with so many employees working from different places, corporations are now faced with the quandary of how to deliver effective, personalized training. But irrespective of these changes, for many organizations, L&D has remained an issue for quite some time. Faced with an overwhelming explosion of knowledge on a daily basis, we have never been so informed. However, this information overload, alongside ever-changing company policies, means that L&D departments face the need to provide access to learning at all times — and employees require constant re-training to keep their corporate knowledge up to date.
When it comes to staff training, sporadic, mass-delivered peer-to-peer sessions are the usual run of events. With most staff receiving their training at the same time, not only does this affect business as usual for many companies, it often costs precious time and resource, only to ultimately leave staff with gaps in their knowledge. It is clear therefore that it is time that corporations step into the future and look to more intelligent solutions to facilitate their training.
Identifying the issues with traditional L&D
Undeniably, it is an uphill battle for many companies trying to keep up to date with new developments, and often the financial burdens can be vast. Research from Statista has shown that worldwide, the average employer spends 1,300 U.S dollars per employee on L&D.
Worse still, seldom do more traditional methods of L&D result in sustained productivity. Even with the best intentions, this sort of training often serves more as a box-ticking exercise to ensure that employees have accurate corporate knowledge, rather than delivering training that is tailored to the individual. Data from Elephants Don’t Forget suggests that on average, members of staff will know just 52% of what their employer needs them to know to perform optimally in their role.
For learning to be retained and have a sustained impact, businesses must therefore invest in more efficient solutions to boost the retention of new information and employee productivity.
A tailor-made learning experience
In order to deliver training effectively, it is of vital importance that we understand how we learn, and when we learn best. No individual is the same, and so employers should take this into account when adopting new L&D strategies. That’s where artificial intelligence (AI) comes in – rather than relying on an outdated on-size-fits all approach to training, AI algorithms can learn from observing behaviours, including how staff respond to different information presented to them, in order to adapt training to their unique learning style.
These granular insights provide businesses with vital information that they can utilise to customize learning packages to individual employees, in a way that takes into account their current level of understanding, and allows them to learn in a way that suits them best.
Additionally, as AI can help to deliver training in a more continuous manner, it can also overcome the common stumbling block that many businesses face, that causes staff to quickly forget the material delivered. AI is perfectly placed to deliver specific information on-demand to employees, saving a substantial amount of time if a member of staff is too busy to sift through reams of documents in order to find a morsel of information.
There are many cases in which employees will need to quickly look up specific information, which they may find locked away in endless pages of documents. Let’s say, for example, that an employee is rushing to a meeting with a prospective client – and has run out of time to conduct the appropriate due diligence. AI can step in to deliver the information they are looking for, enabling them to quickly get an overview of the client at extremely short notice.
The benefits of investing in AI that has the ability to conduct a spoken Q&A are vast; with access to almost endless knowledge, staff will always have the most up-to-date information at their fingertips, without any significant burden to their business-as-usual. Investing in technology that allows businesses to be economical with time allocated on training means that more time can be devoted to effectively running the business itself, with enhanced productivity.
Ultimately, if businesses are to succeed and provide their employees with the best opportunities for L&D, it is essential that they keep abreast of the latest innovations in AI to do so. The market potential for EdTech is surging: with growth forecasted to $342bn or above by 2025, companies should look ahead and invest in the tech of the future to prosper.
Nikolas Kairinos is the chief executive officer and founder of Soffos, the world’s first AI-powered KnowledgeBot. He also founded Fountech.ai, a company which is driving innovation in the AI sector and helping consumers, businesses and governments understand how this technology is making the world a better place.