A good learning and development (L&D) professional is well aware that training is not the answer to all the learning needs that are identified in an organization. The ultimate goal of L&D is to help improve employee performance. To achieve that goal, L&D professional has to sometimes convince the stakeholders that performance support may be a better solution than training.
In this blog, I will help you understand what performance support is all about and how it will help your employees do their jobs better.
Performance support is the informal learning delivery consisting of tools, techniques, and resources that provide employees with information or guidance to complete tasks at the moment of need. It helps the employees to work better and facilitates better learning. This form of learning should be focused on solving performance issues at work and getting the tasks done.
Let’s look at how we can create performance support tools and resources for our organizations.
People are always looking for quick answers. Creating small pieces of content that take only minutes to consume like micro-content and bite-sized content will keep the focus on performance support. The stripping down of content to the bare essentials will help the employees with the task at hand.
Allow the employees to use the resources as per their need. It enables them to personalize their content rather than you personalize it for them.
The key is to make the resources available and easily accessible. The more easily the information can be accessed the more it will be used.
Smartphones and tablets are used more than a laptop or a desktop. More and more people are using it at work to access content. This comes handy to a mobile workforce, such as the sales team, who prefer to consume learning on the go.
Text, images, graphics, audio, and video are all appreciated formats of content that can be used on mobile. Interactivity in e-learning helps to keep the learners engaged. But, do the learners need it in performance support? Interactivity can be used to dig deeper and get more information, like “click the button to learn more”. Use it only if it adds value.
1. Sequential list: This will help the learner when performing a sequential task.
2. Flowchart: A flowchart includes branching, which helps learners see the actual task. It provides a visual breakdown of the steps to complete a task.
3. Guide or cheat sheet: This could be a PDF document that the learner can refer to when in need.
4. Checklists: These will help learners when they are working on non-sequential tasks.
5. Infographic: It helps the learners see patterns and provides everything they need on one page in the form of images and mind maps.
6. Screenshots and images: Screenshots of main elements help to recall and reinforce the concepts and information.
7. Audio and video guides: These will help the learner access content and appeal to different learning styles. Creating a how-to video will show the step-by-step process to complete a task.
To conclude, there is no denying that performance support is changing e-learning and how we approach instructional design. The key here is to provide your learners with the best support to perform their job. It can range from refreshing their memory with performance support tools that we discussed or using bite-sized on-demand content support. The idea is not to limit the performance support tools to one delivery method. The days when learning took place in a classroom or in front of a desktop are long over. It’s time we relook at what the learner and their jobs need, then design a learning solution or performance support tool that will help them do their best at work.
At Tesseract Learning, our learning and visual architects are constantly innovating and reinventing their approaches to design, develop, and deliver effective L&D programs.
We are leveraging our powerful learning platform, KREDO, to create efficiencies across the training life cycle and to deliver optimal learning experiences.