It’s a common concern, and rightly so! If your learning platform doesn’t connect with people and they just don’t want to use it, everything else is essentially academic. It’s part of a wider problem we call The Engagement Gap, the concept that without engagement, L&D can’t help people solve problems, learn skills and become better at their roles.
You’re probably here for one of two reasons:
- You’re about to launch and want to get it right.
- You’ve launched. Engagement isn’t what you’d hoped, and you want to rectify that.
And in just five minutes, we’ll give you some pointers on overcoming both of these barriers.
How to protect yourself against a lack of engagement before launch
We’ve written about this in detail here, but here’s a quick summary of how to structure your approach and pull it off. Our Customer Success team break it down into three parts:
Launch isn’t about a single week or day! It starts months in advance and requires planning for the first few weeks or months after you’ve gone live.
Planning the pre-launch phase:
- Make sure you understand how the product works for yourself: Otherwise, how are you going to convince people to use it and explain how effectively?
- Rope in all the right people: Find advocates, get stakeholders who can make or break your strategy on board, identify subject matter experts with knowledge to share.
- Build a learning brand people love: From the look and feel to how it reflects the company’s values and personality, a brand creates something more tangible for people to attach themselves to.
- Audit EVERYTHING: How well does your existing content work? Is there anything you can migrate over? Does your data highlight certain topics and formats that people love?
- Run soft launches and test sessions: Find small groups of people who can give it a spin and offer honest feedback. Try and find a mix of people who are and aren’t currently engaged with your L&D efforts.
- Build a strong communications plan: Build the hype, keep the momentum going and plan as much as you can. How are you going to get people excited? What are you doing post-launch to keep that buzz going?
The implementation phase
Can be summed up in two words: goal setting!
If you’ve not set goals, what are you aiming towards? What impact are you hoping to have? Failing to set meaningful goals can easily lead to a half-baked approach, where you’re using the wrong tactics and ending up with that engagement problem.
Set yourself the following goals:
- ASAP Goal: We recommended that this is an activation target, a percentage that represents getting the vast majority of people logging in and using the platform in the first few days or week.
- 30-day goal.
- 60-day goal.
- 90-day goal.
For those 30-60-90 day goals, it’s critical to think about realisitic behaviours and milestones you’d like to have achieved by this point. Establish the clear steps needed to get there and ensure they won’t overwhelm your learners – otherwise, they’ll never happen.
Once you’ve hit the activation target, perhaps you’ll set a goal for user-generated content to drive social learning. That might mean each team uploading five resources by the end of month one. If you’re aiming to upskill people, a 30-day goal might mean conducting a skill review with each person.
What to do if you’re seeing low engagement after launch
Work out why! Your detective work can take you down two routes: speaking to people and looking at the numbers – it’s sensible to do both, but a data-first approach can ensure you’re speaking to the right people and asking the right things.
Step one: Analyse the data
How many people have yet to log in? Are they in certain teams or offices? This can be a great place to start. Activation might sit at just 70% but the majority of your inactive users are in one department – so there’s a clear group of people that haven’t seen the value in logging in!
Which parts of the platform or types of content have been most popular so far? That’ll tell you which aspects of the way you’ve structured and populated your learning space are hitting the mark. Knowing that might also help you communicate the benefit to others while recognising elements that could do with a boost.
Understand whether key integrations have been made too, this will help reduce the friction between the ways people work now and the behaviour change you’re driving.
Step two: Speak to people
Armed with insights around the platform’s performance to date, you can go and ask the right people the right questions.
Have there been barriers to them logging in?
Do they have concerns or questions that we didn’t do a good job of addressing during roll out?
Are they reverting to the old ways of working out of habit?
A sensible approach is to carry out both quantitative and qualitative research. Send round a survey, get an overall picture of how your learning platform’s been received based on scores and consistent answers. You can then use that to gather relevant anecdotal stories that expand on why people answered in that way.
What if our research shows the platform just isn’t the right fit?
There is a harsh truth that we haven’t broached just yet, what if your current platform just isn’t a good fit!?
Maybe you’ve picked an LMS that doesn’t integrate and the horror stories are all about how switching apps is killing productivity. Would you want to use a learning platform that took you out of the workflow, where you really need to apply learning the most…
If you’re in this boat, think of us as your LXP lifejacket! Book a demo and we’ll show you around a learning experience platform your people will love.
Check out our other learning management system (LMS) resources
- Building a business case for a learning platform (LMS & LXP) | The definitive guide
- Choosing a learning platform? Ask yourself these questions | LMS or LXP
- You don’t need an LMS for your small business, you need a learning platform
- LMS for corporate training? You’re better off using a learning platform!
- Is the LMS a sinking ship? And are learning platforms the lifeboat?
- The (lack of) evolution of the LMS and how it caused its downfall
- People think they need an LMS, Google Search Trends prove they’re wrong!
- How to move seamlessly between learning platforms
- The Complete Guide To Buying, Building And Launching An LMS Or LXP