How Big Data is Revolutionizing Corporate Training


By Joe Peters

Today’s businesses often invest heavily in analytics tools, staff and expertise, and this contributes to the fact that big data is quickly becoming the basis of many corporate decisions. The data, however, must be properly structured and analyzed in order to be used by corporations for decision-making purposes, and ideally it will be timely information.

One of the most significant uses of big data is in the corporate training realm. For example, development experts and human resources professionals use data to hone in on skills development and to make crucial decisions regarding corporate training. A closer look at big data’s use in corporate training can be enlightening.

Determining training needs

Before big data can be used for corporate training, it is important to understand how it can be used in a corporate training realm. For example, it can be used to identify learning needs of individual employees, teams and departments. By doing so, individual skills that are needed for improvement can be determined, and this can be useful in determining which training courses to cover. In addition, big data can be used to determine the best educational platform to use, such as an online course, a classroom setting or a blended approach. The delivery of the information, such as in a hard copy or a verbal format, can also be determined. The employees’ schedule, skills and needs should be taken into account when making a final decision about corporate training.

Conducting continuous improvements

Corporate education is not a one-time experience, and instead, it requires continuous effort with ongoing improvements. Big data enables this type of ongoing experience for corporate training by analyzing the previous experiences that the company has used. For example, it provides information regarding how employees interacted with and benefited from modules to determine which were most or least effective. In fact, some are cloud-based platforms that provide you with real-time feedback for instantaneous information and improved corporate training.

The methodology makes it fast and easy to collect and analyze data from a large number of users and courses at the same time for superior feedback results. For example, some learners may skip through some of the materials without a negative impact on their learning, and this enables you to tweak the educational sessions going forward. Altogether, you will benefit from having insight into course effectiveness, learner preferences and usage patterns so that you can refine corporate training going forward.

Personalized approach

Big data may be seen as being impersonal, but it can provide you with the ability to personalize the learning experience and make the best use of advanced education technology in a personalized way through analysis and tools. Data analysis, for example, gives human resources professionals more insight regarding the strengths and weakness of the staff members so that they can adjust their processes to accommodate their strong points more fully. It also enables you to track learning processes and effectiveness so that you can create more personalized and effective processes.

Learner data can be blended with demographics to show the progression of corporate training efforts in real-time, and this enables you to immediately intervene in the learning process if necessary. It also enables you to know more specifically which learning modules are most effective for specific employees or groups of employees.

Anticipating future trends

Big data and sustainability are two business trends that are focused intently on optimizing operational productivity and increasing profits. By providing adequate training for staff members, you can more likely secure the positive outcome that you seek, and big data is critical in this process because it enables you to align your training programs with real-time analysis of training efforts.

In today’s modern business world, corporate social responsibility and sustainability are both needed for success, and increased savings and profits are available to you when you follow through on giving your employees the training they need. Big data can be used to create effective training programs that encourage employees to focus on sustainability and other social initiatives, and this can have a major impact on your business’s success in the future.

In an IDG study in 2015, 80 percent of enterprises and 63 percent of small and medium businesses said they were already using big data projects for planning purposes. Big data is the key to improving corporate training because it provides real-time information with in-depth analysis of the information. It enables businesses to be more consistent and effective in their efforts while also helping companies anticipate future trends and to make changes more efficiently.

Joe Peters is a Baltimore-based freelance writer and an ultimate tech enthusiast. When he is not working his magic as a marketing consultant, this incurable tech junkie enjoys reading about latest apps and gadgets and binge-watching his favorite TV shows. You can reach him @bmorepeters

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