top of page

Digital Transformation of Learning and The Learning Ecosystem in a Hybrid Workplace..

Evolution of my thoughts based from the sharings, discussions and insights on the Future of Learning in the Digital and Social Age.

Especially on what is a Learning Ecosystem and the foundational blocks to consider while taking the Digital transformation journey..
Digital Transformation of Learning and The Learning Ecosystem
While organisations are accelerating their digital transformation of their business and HR is tasked with defining the Future Workforce and the workplace especially as we learn to live and play and work in a post covid 19 world, , it has become imperative that people development is crucial and enabling learning within and outside of the organisation is key to their long term survival and success.

The scaffolded approach towards digital transformation of learning is working in parts and giving quick wins ,that which starts with Digitisation of learning (example of introducing virtual classroom trainings, micros learning etc ) to Digitalisation ( deploying Learning management systems, integrating with Content libraries like Linked , using Learning Data Analytics etc) and eventually integrating into the overall Digital Transformation blueprint of the organisation.
But the key challenge L&D has, is in parallel to taking that scaffolded approach , is in redefining or in some cases defining what a “Learning Organisation “should be in this new norm driven. And how should the environment look like to enable the engagement and experience.
In my discussions, most agree that the WHY of Learning has not changed, that is the desire to acquire new knowledge, skills and behaviours. Thus the purpose of a Learning Organisation remains the same.
But the WHAT,HOW ,WHERE AND WHEN OF Learning has evolved. Social engagement and communities coupled with adoption of digital technologies has accelerated the transformation. Thus the ecosystem that enables and drives learning has evolved and has created a new buzz around the term ” Learning Ecosystem” within the L&D community.

So what is a Learning Ecosystem ?
Expanding on the relevancy to the current times, the way I have defined it ,
"is that which is integrated and interdependent of the people, system, content and technology within and outside of an organization underpinned by a learning culture and strategy that empowers & enables learning to achieve the long term vision and purpose of the organization and its people"

For the Learning Ecosystem to be relevant and to be successful in the Transformation journey ,there are some fundamental considerations which are on top of the Digital adoption that L&D needs to take into account.
1. Ensure the Learning Culture and Learning Strategy within the organisation is understood, aligned, pervasive and demonstrated starting with the leadership and at all levels. If it is still pocketed, L&D will have a hard time moving from the Digitisation stage to the next as the overall business case and support to the need for a transformation of learning in the organisation will not be seen.

2. Enable Organisational and People Digital Readiness: The Organisation and People are digitally ready and have the right Growth Mindset to journey with the organisation. There are companies who have been successful in the workforce transformation approach but there are many others who while have introduced new digital skills training and job redesign of their workforce failed to not have journeyed thru the change process of addressing the WHY they need and What It is in it for me ? On the top end of the pyramid, also ensuring the leadership are tuned in and role modelling the Digital readiness.

3. Encourage Performance and Business outcome alignment : While still encouraging a culture of Life Long Learning and “Learning Curiosity “ ,Learning is always aligned to an outcome or is purposeful and this is a shared responsibility of the employee and organisation to make happen . This is evident as with now a plethora of learning channels (content libraries etc) and content made available employees might be overwhelmed and might not be optimising learning for purpose.

4. Support and enable ALL employees in their learning journey : Adding another layer to the ecosystem in People is the different way of learning based on the demographic of the learner in the organisation, ,we need to be able to provide learning across all employee demographics …still there are employees who gravitate towards classroom and formal learning while others prefer collaborative, micro learning approach. Especially now with the hybrid workforce in play, where they learn from and is it conducive to engage in learning and what drives learning.

Note : A learning ecosystem should be technology agnostic as it evolves with technological trends.

Learning Experience Ecosystem
Taking into consideration the above , L&D now has to play the role of learning architects to help define, curate a learning experience that enables the right and relevant learning for the workforce and also ensure the balance between learning enablement ,learning engagement and learning experience. Which I will address in another article.
While most companies have some sort of Learning management system to deliver the learning experience , in the Social and Digital Age, the LMS is not the center of learning. The Learning environment has evolved and some coin it @ Learning Experience Platform. Similar to now with the Employee Experience Platform being the flavour of month for most HR leaders. I prefer the term @ Learning Experience Ecosystem as it is part of the blocks in the overall Learning Ecosystem.
Some of the key elements of a Learning Experience Ecosystem , would be that
  • Enables the learning experience across the organization for both Formal/Informal from within and outside of the organisation

  • Takes a Digital (Digital Learning technologies) and Social (Social collaborative) First engagement approach

  • Is Organic and Fluid

  • Enables Rapid learning to Performance @ Agile learning

  • Empowers the Learner to take primary ownership of learning with a shared responsibility with the organisaiton/manager for purposeful outcome

  • Drives towards unconscious behaviour back at workplace whether remote or physical.

  • Integrates into the overall "Employee Experience Ecosystem"

  • Identifies the Learning Experience Platform as the primary interface and not the Learning Management Platform

Note : How L&D creates that environment is dependent on the maturity level of the organisation, leadership and the workforce engagement.

More to follow..

Author :Bala Murali Copyright@Agilitas Learning


Glass Buildings


bottom of page