Types of continuing vocational training
Use Cases: Reskilling and Upskilling
Types of continuing vocational training
In the past, it was sufficient just to complete an apprenticeship or a course of study. Employees were prepared for their entire working life with the knowledge they had learned. This has changed fundamentally. Today, you constantly need fresh know-how in your profession.
Because knowledge becomes obsolete faster and faster in all areas - especially in IT-related jobs. The rapid change of the available technology and tools as well as new technical information makes it necessary to keep up to date. Lifelong learning is therefore the top priority in continuing vocational training. Vocational training has long since ceased to be synonymous only with face-to-face seminars. The landscape has changed fundamentally. The opportunities to acquire new knowledge are now more diverse than ever and mix digital learning with face-to-face learning. The following overview gives you an overview.
However, disadvantages that cannot be discussed away are:
And: Since different media and presentation formats can be combined with each other, different types of learning styles can be addressed. E-learning caters to different senses, in particular hearing or seeing - via text, video, animation or graphics. In addition, the learning success can be controlled at the push of a button. Statistical functions or learning progress analyses provide an excellent overview of all learning processes and can be adapted if necessary.
However, e-learning will never completely replace classical learning formats. Because there is a catch: If learners have special questions, they have limited possibilities to ask questions them with e-learning formats. The contents are presented continuously - without direct contact to the trainer. This can also lead to misinterpretation of the content, which impairs learning success. Accordingly, e-learning is particularly suitable as a supplement to seminars.
The principle of blended learning is very practical for the participants for several reasons:
Integrating blended learning offerings into vocational training is also extremely practical for the employer, as employees are less likely to be absent than at face-to-face seminars thanks to the flexible online sessions that can be called up. This reduces costs.
This is how it works: Employers upload individual content into a learning app, which can be edited by the employee in the app. An explanation video with a subsequent quiz, for example. But mobile learning can do even more. It also involves interaction with the teacher and other learners. Teachers and learners are networked via their mobile devices and can, for example, exchange information individually or in groups via the chat applications.
Mobile Learning is also an extremely positive contributor to Work Life Balance. After all, it is perfectly compatible with one's private life. The learner is not dependent on fixed times during which he has to complete courses. Instead, he can coordinate with the family when he can retrieve and edit his learning content. So it is no problem to take enough time for one's own relatives, friends and acquaintances and to further educate oneself professionally.
The way in which learning content is prepared can also contribute to a positive work/life balance. Mobile Learning often consists of so-called learning nuggets, which are shorter learning units. These can be accommodated much more easily in everyday life than "classic" learning units of a few hours.
In very fast-moving industries like IT, Micro Learning offers a number of advantages. Here, work steps and contents change rapidly. This makes it all the more important that employees always stay on the ball. Micro-Learning enables learners to update themselves continuously and quickly. Staying that way is always up-to-date.
Microlearning combines several advantages:
Many employers offer their employees collaboration and information exchange opportunities in the professional sector via a corporate social networks. Using communication and social media apps for use in business, colleagues can inform themselves via news stream or chats about interesting facts, send pictures, text and voice messages or video messages. Employee apps are an enriching component of internal training because internal knowledge is always in flux and informal learning is encouraged across different locations.
At the same time, social learning enables peer-to-peer learning, in which knowledge is not shared by a teacher, but by an employee who shares his knowledge with others. The corresponding content can be processed within an employee app and shared precisely with the right audience.
Peer-to-peer learning brings numerous benefits to organisations. What is learned on the job often also fits perfectly into the strategic needs of the respective company. The value multiplies when the learning is shared. And on top of that, it also networks colleagues with each other and promotes communication within the organization. A win-win situation.
The authors of the study conclude: "Continuing vocational training in enterprises is one of the few areas in which digitisation is on the upswing, but still at a relatively early stage. Companies now have the opportunity to actively shape change within continuing vocational training. With the integration of new learning formats into in-company continuing training, a considerable increase in efficiency in personnel development can be achieved. The new training formats can be integrated more flexibly and precisely into everyday working life. So the acquisition of knowledge can always take place when it is necessary. Companies should use this competitive advantage: Content, processes, software and hardware as well as legal regulations change at ever shorter intervals.
The driver of this development is digitization, and in most indutries shortened product lifecycles. This always requires new user knowledge. In addition, work content is changing rapidly. More and more routine tasks are being outsourced to the computer and the human resource is increasingly turning to the field of knowledge work.
In other words, we carry out fewer and fewer recurring work processes, but works more strategically and creatively. In order to be able to adequately fulfil these tasks, the individual must constantly update new fields of knowledge.
According to the representative survey conducted by Bitkom Research on behalf of VdTÜV e.V. and Bitkom e.V., this customer has also reached most employers:
In practice, however, continuing education leveraging digital and mobile tools is still in its infancy. On average, only 2.3 training days are available per employee and one in five companies states that they do not offer any training at all. Digital learning tools can help close this gap.
Conclusion: A new start in lifelong learning is needed. Not only does further training have to become more digital and more flexible in the everyday lives of employees. Enterprises must also give workers the opportunity to develop their knowledge and to include the time needed for this more strongly in working time calculations.
The Continuing Vocational Training Trend Monitor states: "Due to the cost pressure in continuing vocational training and the evidence of the highest possible return on investment, it is necessary to adapt the learning content as best as possible to the company requirements. Of particular relevance in this context for the companies surveyed are the practical relevance, the topicality of the learning content taught and the efficient transfer of knowledge: 98 percent of the companies state that the learning content must not be too theoretical, 93 percent emphasise the necessity of compact and efficient transfer of knowledge and 81 percent consider it important that the learning content corresponds to the current state of science.“
In the future, however, it will not only be a matter of imparting knowledge, but also of imparting skills that enable employees to use their specialist know-how efficiently depending on the situation.
The right framework conditions must be created for this. The study defines the following prerequisites:
A combination of different learning opportunities - digital and non-digital - offers learners the opportunities they need to promote individual learning. This enables the management of a wide range of learning materials and media, information on learning progress and tools for teamwork. These offerings can be increasingly expanded and adapted to the new challenges of continuing education. In this way, the learning culture of a company grows with its requirements.
In the future the demand for digital and specialist skills will increase. Employees must also redevelop certain social skills. For example, the ability to work in a team will become more important. Because teamwork is a good way to work on creative and interdisciplinary tasks in an increasingly complex working environment. More and more often, teams will be composed of experts who complement each other in their specialist knowledge. The more efficiently they work together, the more successfully they manage their tasks. Accordingly, communication skills are required to ensure a smooth exchange of specialist knowledge. The teaching of social skills must in future be part of in-company continuing training. Experts call this reskilling.
According to the study "How companies prepare their employees for the world of work 4.0" by the non-profit organization Ashoka and the management consultancy McKinsey & Company, reskilling supplements the necessary measures for upskilling within continuing vocational training. This means that employees in all existing jobs must be trained to use new digital tools and applications.
"Upskilling and reskilling are short-term measures with which companies must train their employees in order to react to the first waves of technological changes," says Matthias Daub, co-editor of the study and partner at McKinsey. But where do companies stand here? This is shown by the following two use cases.
In a global comparison, however, only ten percent of the companies surveyed have an upskilling program for their own employees. The figures speak for themselves: there is a clear need for action.
In the area of leadership, the training comprises six modules and gives managers the tools to optimise their communication, but also to lead their teams in an authentic, visionary, understanding and efficient way. Meanwhile, the management training consists of five modules and provides managers with the necessary foundations for a responsible, far-sighted, inspiring and efficient way of dealing with the stresses of everyday life.
In another scenario, you need a unified learning platform for your in-house upskilling program. Do you already have numerous contents and your own trainers? But you do not have a digital platform with which you can easily reorganise your training courses? Are you looking for a partner who designs and/or develops company-specific training courses?
In both cases, The Swiss Mobile Academy is here to assist navigate this new world of learning. We help you to create up-to-date digital teaching materials and provide you with our Swiss Made technology.