How to implement new training tools
Forms of learning are constantly evolving thanks to new technologies. Whether it is to broaden creativity, offer more freedom or automate the production of content, new training tools are constantly being developed to meet these changing needs, whether for the educational environment or for continuing education in companies. However, once the solution has been identified, there remains a major challenge: its integration into your structure and the support of users. How can you optimize the implementation of these new training tools? What are the key steps to successfully adopt a new solution?
Project management - the big picture
The integration process is divided into three main phases: preparation, testing and evaluation. Like any innovative project, it is indeed necessary to prepare the ground, mobilize resources to maximize the quality of the deployment and engage users from the outset. Finally, the analysis of the results is essential to measure the success of the operation and to allow its evolution.
At each stage, it is essential to generate the support of trainers and learners. That said, there is no need to involve them from the outset: as the installation is paced, it does not require the same trades depending on its progress. In fact, the questions the tool will answer are very simple:
what are the benefits and objectives?
how is it used, what are the main features? How to get the best out of it? Which networks should it be connected to?
who will be the users and what different roles will they have with the tool?
where should the tool be placed? on which channels should it operate?
when will it be made available to users? how often will it be used?
Once you have defined these prerequisites, you can then structure the deployment schedule that will help you choose the new training tool with peace of mind!
1) Mobilize a dedicated project team
For a smooth transition, it is best to gather a small group of expert specifiers. Make sure you have a variety of skills on this committee to maximize the legitimacy and appreciation of the solution: learning manager, technical manager, internal communications manager, etc.
Identify the relevant stakeholders and assign a project manager to lead the selection and implementation of the new training tool.
2) Identify user levels
Whatever the tool chosen, the pool of users is divided into several groups, each with their own objectives, needs and behaviour in the face of the new material. Categorizing these different teams makes it possible to adapt the discourse and the means to be made available. For example, the designer of a training program will not have the same use as the trainer who creates the content. Understanding the uses of each will enable you to present the interest and the functionalities of the solution from the angle that is most relevant to each group.
Once you have identified the different levels, make sure that each level has a “representative” during the pilot testing phase. Their feedback on the first tests will help to anchor needs and improve your communication about the tool.
3) Formalise the needs
After a lot of research work on your side, you probably have a very rich panel of information, which you need to structure. Have you covered all the issues well? As mentioned in the “Project management” section, it is important to clarify the key success factors and to detail them sufficiently: KPIs, uses, target audiences, space and time frame.
Do not hesitate to discuss with the different professions concerned by this change, either informally or through a preparatory questionnaire. It is possible that the feedback will recommend a status quo with routine comfort. Don’t be fooled: innovation doesn’t wait for your teams to be ready and the evidence of benefits is often recognized after implementation. It just needs to be demonstrated!
4) Anticipating constraints
Any new training tool (or digital tool in general) is often faced with constraints. These can be of the following kinds:
But also be relative to more subjective variables:
5) Compare the most suitable tools
We will hear it again and again: the choice of new training tools must be prepared in detail. So, once you have your list of criteria in hand, your search offers you a wide but well-defined field of possibilities. All that remains is to find the solution that is best suited to your requirements.
It should be noted that adaptation also requires simplicity. Cumulating tools considerably multiplies the time and energy devoted to their implementation. It may be wiser to opt for an all-in-one solution that combines the key uses and functionalities on your training course.
Let’s take the example of a Rapidmooc studio:
It is important to project the tool into its future environment and to anticipate the underlying needs. In this case, the need to produce “raw” video is followed by the need to edit and share it. Having a tool that meets a maximum of requirements without having to juggle between platforms offers the significant advantage of being unique. Only one training course required, only one tool to understand and practice. Why make it complicated when you can make it simple?
6) Testing the solution with users - decision makers (designers and trainers)
Once you have made your choice, you need to confirm its relevance and potential for success. It is time to enter the testing phase. Having previously defined the user levels and their ambassadors, it is now up to you to pilot the evaluation of the solution.
Initially, it is necessary to recontextualize and justify this selection to those who will integrate it into their strategies. Then, through practice, program designers, learning managers, trainers, MOOC creators and teachers will easily measure the benefits of the new training tool chosen. Gather feedback through an initial questionnaire. This will allow you to optimize the settings and specify the possible uses.
7) Continue the test with the users - beneficiaries (learners)
The training content produced with the tool must be suitable for trainers and learners alike! Using a sample of users, test the attractiveness of the newly designed programs. Similarly, collect feedback with questionnaires on both the existing (test content created) and the potential (format suggestions).
To engage this level of users : we have a habit at Rapidmooc of offering them a behind-the-scenes look at the design of the content. By testing the studio themselves, they sometimes come up with very innovative content ideas, making it even easier for them to join in and get excited about it, thanks to the collaborative aspect.
8) Formalise deployment and launch communication
The test phases are successful and the whole team is eager to generalize the solution? The official announcement of such a decision must be carried by several ambassadors and spread out over time. Although not necessarily revolutionary, the news must be at least exciting.
For this, play on the codes of event communication:
9) Train all users
Newness pleases but can also intimidate. Therefore, the communication around any new training tool must also include the reassurance of a dedicated training schedule and progressive deployment.
Rapidmooc studios – for example – may be all-in-one, self-service solutions, but their installation is always accompanied by a mini-training session with best practices as well as more in-depth follow-up if necessary.
Good idea: make quick and educational tutorials available to ease the transition and provide inspiration
10) Measuring results
There is no point in implementing a new tool without measuring its real impact on the expected results in relation to the initial objectives. To quantify and qualify the progress, here are some performance indicators to follow:
Learner engagement :
Trainers’ activity :