Today’s employees aren’t going to sit around and watch decades-old training videos for six hours and then take a test on the computer to see how “competent” they are on what they learned—it’s tiresome, ineffective, and ends up costing much more time, money, and culture points than you might realize. Instead, organizations are being driven to move into a Learning Management System environment, where they offer a platform for development, training, and collaborative knowledge sharing to enhance everyone’s skills within the organization.
Some of the most valuable training and teaching opportunities present themselves when coworkers spark a debate, inquire with their peers, or otherwise share insights and information in an informal setting. Being able to translate that to the LMS where you can share knowledge and create an ecosystem of continuous improvement will take things one step further.
Training Modules are Out and Collaborative Learning Is In
In the past, companies were happy to utilize technology to create training modules and learning courses that individuals could use to be trained in their role and upskill their abilities within the organization. Today, there are still courses and modules like that out there, but collaborative learning solutions like a custom LMS are definitely taking center stage as people demand better opportunities for shared knowledge and connected learning.
When you know your industry, as well as your offerings and internal operations, you will continue to maintain a competitive edge. Using an LMS for collaborative learning can be done in several different ways.
Create Social Learning Opportunities
The modern LMS offers so many features that help you create a social learning opportunity for everything that you want your team to learn. People can collaborate, discuss courses and their own knowledge, and even discuss the LMS itself and help each other use the platform easier or create better peer experiences through information sharing.
Set Knowledge and Development Goals
If you’re going to encourage knowledge-sharing, you’ve got to have goals in place. You can’t just say you’re opening the floor to let people share information and leave it at that. As part of performance management, you’ll want to check in on their development and learning, see what goals can be made and if any goals have already been achieved.
Reward Contributions and Knowledge Sharing
Along with setting goals, you’ll want to reward those who are so involved in knowledge sharing and the L&D process that they contribute in as many ways as possible. Whether it’s an expert giving a walkthrough on a specific software platform or just someone who added a resource article about some internal processes, you need to let people know you appreciate their input. Engaged cultures that welcome employee learning and sharing are going to go much further than those still stuck in the old ways of training and development.
Highlight Internal Experts
Subject matter experts (SMEs) are people who have a strong knowledge of a specific subject or area of study. Organizations usually have at least a few of these and bringing them into the LMS is a great way to spotlight their skills, allow them to offer tutorials or other videos, and more. This can help generate peer-shared knowledge in several formats—written content, video, etc.
Plus, when you highlight internal experts, you’re not encouraging your people to look elsewhere for role models for their career success.
Give Employees Ownership and They Will Respond in Kind
Employees that don’t feel valued or appreciated aren’t going to go the extra mile to contribute knowledge and resources. Those who feel that you’ll just take their content and use it for your own will probably keep that content to themselves. However, if you take an active role in giving your people ownership of the intellectual property that they share, you will give them the chance to feel heard. You’ll also get a better idea of where people stand and what they need to learn, as well as what they want to learn.
You can’t just give employees training and education. You also have to show them how they can apply that education and training, as well as how they can collaborate with others to improve growth and innovation across the organization. When you create a culture that promotes knowledge sharing and learning, you’ll find that your workforce is more motivated, eager to grow, and eager to help your business succeed.
When you take the time to create a strong knowledge sharing culture, you will find that your LMS becomes a central part of that, allowing people to engage in discussions, share and disseminate various pieces of content, and learn more about the benefits of knowledge sharing for the future organization, among so many other things.
LMS Features That Promote Knowledge Sharing
When it comes to sharing knowledge, you have a few different options. Setting up your LMS to provide a knowledge-sharing solution will be critical to your success. The modern LMS can even be tailored to your needs, which can include benchmarks and goals related to knowledge sharing and collaborative learning. Some people won’t get on board until or unless they know they’re being watched and expected to share knowledge, but that’s usually only in those cultures that are already struggling.
The LMS makes it easy for people to share training modules, self-made and organizational resources, and all the knowledge that has been gathered by the organization and all of its employees over the years. Use the discussion features, create an employee-curated and managed resource library, and take advantage of the rest of the LMS to promote a collaborative learning environment above all else.
The future of learning and development is much like the future of business: collaborative and consistent. Knowledge sharing is just one part of this process that’s changing the way that employees feel about work and their role in it. By taking the time to learn about this practice and how you can incorporate it both within your LMS and elsewhere, you’ll have a much better chance of success when educating your team. Take advantage of online learning and the right LMS platform to start having greater production and an overall increase in the quality of your organization.