Knowledge Management rides again?

Remember the Knowledge Management wave that moved through in the early ’90s? Large repositories of live shared process documents that gave everyone a shared view of how things were done…. Whatever happened? LMSs came along, instructional content was easier to digest and maybe more effective…

Perhaps it’s time in the L&D space has come again in the guise of performance support. We’re seeing many more organisations focused on bridging the gap between structured learning experiences and access to live, current knowledge. There are a bunch of drivers for this. Number one is the pace of internal change and the seeming impossibility of training in what best practice is. The cost of large-scale learning resource production is another, so are strategies such as 70/20/10 that focus on learning in work.

Bridging the gap isn’t easy though. There’s an assumption in there that performance support tools are themselves able to provide current reliable information, which is simply not a reality for many organisations. Learning tools themselves have often struggled to provide a seamless connection between a structured learning experience and process information. ‘You can learn about it over here, and then go find it over there’ is pretty common.

Where then, are the opportunities for doing it better? Consider spending time piloting and testing cloud-based learning technologies that are better at pushing, connecting and reporting informal learning. xAPI and LTI standards-compliant solutions offer the possibility of learners connecting with information and tools most relevant to their roles, and for that activity to be sheeted back to the organisation so that it’s visible and can be reported, and learners supported.

A quick search for xAPI or LTI compliant solutions will provide you with a wide array to consider. Start by looking for functionality that genuinely offers value to learners, and jump in and get your hands dirty. You’re unlikely to transform your vision for learning overnight, but it’s a it like global warming – the sooner you start to change, the better your chances of making a sound transition.


By Phil Garing

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