In just a few short years, AI went from sci-fi thriller fodder to everyday reality. As soon as Amazon released Alexa and Apple’s old standby Siri started acting as a personal assistant, artificial intelligence became a part of just about every average Joe’s daily routine. But for some reason, that slow progression to mainstream hasn’t translated as adeptly to a learning strategy. In fact, a study performed by CLO and Raytheon found that only seven percent of organizations were leveraging predictive analysis in training.
Hey, we get it: the training industry is resistant to change on the whole and some organizations may be just warming up to the idea of digital learning, let alone AI. But ignoring an entire sector of data and what it could potentially do for learners means missing out on the next big thing for talent development. Get up to speed and you might find yourself looking at AI a little differently.
Trusting Your Gut … or Not
On one hand, the lack of predictive analysis could say something positive about L&D pros on the whole. Maybe they’re just so skilled and experienced that they know what learners want when they want it. Of course, humans are notoriously inconsistent when it comes to making decisions, allowing things like unconscious bias and personal experience cloud their view. What’s more, learners themselves can be incorrect by inflating testing scores, feigning understanding, and not being honest about their goals.
In contrast, AI devices can make decisions without all of the extra curriculars affecting the decision-making process. Instead, it’s all about raw data that doesn’t lie. Is a learner taking a little too long to complete a course? AI can suggest some remedial courses to bring learning up to speed. Is a learner looking into leadership courses outside of her job description? AI can let managers know and keep learners up to speed on promotion opportunities.
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When you ask Siri for directions to a restaurant, you might not think of the exchange as a conversation, but that’s exactly what it is. You use your voice to activate and query the AI, which in turn uses a computer-generated voice to give you the information you need. It might not be as warm and fuzzy as a human-to-human conversation, but the earmarks are there to utilize in your learning strategy.
Voice activation saves you time and can actually make a computer feel a little more relatable. Creating conversations with an AI device could help learners find shortcuts to the things that matter most. Imagine a program noticing a learner’s path and suggesting other courses or a learner that can sit down and simply tell the module what he’d like to learn that day. Because AI utilizes data, it makes better decisions with fewer errors and is more knowledgeable than a human instructor or administrator.
Whether it’s scaling up, speeding up, or simply gathering more information about your learners, AI has a place in your learning strategy. Of course, while AI can help you map out a learning path, it’s up to its human administrators to clear the way.