From the Editors

Take the ‘M’ out of LMS

By 'managing' learning, organizations are not responding to the pressing need to engage employees.

co_0921_fte_302In a September shrm.org blog post, James Cross, director of learning product strategy for Workday, challenged learning leaders to think outside their company’s LMS because it’s stifling workers’ curiosity.

The systems are transactional, back-end, compliance-driven platforms, Cross wrote. They can be considered a rigid business solution especially in today’s complex business environment, which requires workers who are anything but. Employee engagement has a direct impact on the business, and it’s high time companies think more creatively about how to engage them through learning.

Learning isn’t something to be “managed,” Cross wrote. It should be enabled. The innate human need to share and grow knowledge shouldn’t be confined to an unchanging space or burdened by a laser focus on administration. People don’t face this in their lives outside work, where a seemingly immeasurable amount of information is accessible to them on demand.

“They have history’s biggest library of how-to videos on YouTube, but uncovering vital information in the workplace takes the sleuthing skills of an old-fashioned detective,” Cross wrote.

Rather than managing corporate learning through an LMS, learning organizations should focus on creating aha moments that enable, empower and engage workers with learning experiences that are comparable to those found in the real world: videos, targeted learning campaigns and user-generated content.

“There shouldn’t be a difference between workplace learning and consumer learning — there should just be great learning,” Cross wrote.

Bravetta Hassell is a Chief Learning Officer associate editor. Comment below or email editor@CLOmedia.com.