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5 Steps To Closing the Skills Gap With Immersive Learning Solutions

As your organization plans for a bright future, it’s important to be proactive about optimizing your training program to prevent the appearance of skill gaps. With the help of better learning programs, your organization can go one step further and address the skills gap head-on. 

According to the LinkedIn 2024 Workplace Learning Report, over half of the Gen Z workforce agrees that what they learn on the job will help them explore potential career paths within their company. As companies learn more about their employees’ preferences and motivations, they are better equipped to implement innovative immersive learning strategies to close skill gaps and retain the talent that belongs in their organizations. 

Are you keeping a close radar on the performance of your workforce? From staying on top of industry trends to demoing brand new tech advancements, knowing which skills are critical to your organization’s success is invaluable and will help shape your training initiatives to incorporate cutting-edge solutions. 

5 Steps To Close the Skills Gap 

Ready to reinforce knowledge and close the skills gap with immersive learning? These expert steps will ensure that your organization can implement an effective strategy for addressing inconsistent performance, avoidable injuries, and more. 

1. Identify Skill Gaps

The first step to closing the skills gap is to jumpstart a comprehensive assessment of your workforce’s competency and which underperformance trends are hurting your organization the most. From performance tests to evaluations of where your workforce experiences the most common mistakes, identifying skill gaps can help your organization map which core competencies you’ll need to focus on in order to cultivate a prepared workforce.

Once specific skill gaps are identified, your organization can determine the right learning objectives to focus on in your immersive learning strategy. For example, in order to eliminate bottlenecks that slow production, a supply chain company might identify where employees fail to label boxes correctly. Identifying this performance inconsistency requires a closer look to observe the workflow and how employees deviate from their expected competency. From there, addressing that skill deficit in a corrective, hands-on learning path that addresses the objective of proper labeling. The power of immersive learning closes skill gaps with real experience!

2. Create A Corporate Training Strategy 

Effective corporate training strategies require an all-hands-on-deck approach to learning. As learning experts, SMEs, and innovators collaborate to meet the unique needs of each industry’s knowledge and skill gaps, even the most innovative corporate training strategy should apply core learning objectives to immersive learning modalities for maximum impact. 

The agility of your corporate learning strategy depends on several variables, including setting shared expectations with stakeholders and collaborators, establishing clear learning objectives, and asking the right questions when consulting with your selected vendor. Strategizing collaboratively will ensure that your training program gleams with every corner of industry expertise. Don’t forget to invite your SMEs to the table! Their insights can help your organization achieve new levels of efficiency. 

Allow your learning objectives to inform which training modalities will perform best for your specific needs. Once Looking for a dynamic approach? A blended learning model is a jewel box of training capabilities! Blended learning programs are one of the most popular strategies for implementing immersive learning solutions. 

3. Implement Innovative Training Practices 

Bringing innovation to your training program isn’t a one-stop shop. Early and frequent collaboration is essential to piloting successful VR programs and implementing virtual reality at full scale. Exploring the expansive benefits of immersive learning will help your organization get one step closer to closing the skill gaps across your workforce. 

There are many paths to modernizing your training program and creating a culture of ongoing learning in your organization. Augmented reality and virtual reality training bridge the digital and real-world working environments with interactive elements that promote active learning. While the modalities that fall under the XR training umbrellas aren’t siloed to certain kinds of training, AR and VR each have unique capabilities of getting everyone in your workforce on the same page.

VR training accelerates onboarding processes and empowers learners during safety training for high-risk roles, while AR training has become synonymous with on-the-job performance support, retail training, and more! Immersive learning is cultivating a more engaged workforce with active, experiential learning scenarios that promote knowledge retention. How do they know? Organizations are seeing tangible results with real-time tracking that delivers true ROI on immersive learning.  

4. Performance Metrics

Data tells a story. By recording the right performance metrics, your organization can identify exactly where employees go wrong. By selecting the right key performance indicators, the better you can accurately assess workforce abilities. Tracking employee performance during training sessions can help unleash the full potential of your workforce. 

Body Ergonomics

Performance metrics can help prevent injury by assessing the precision of body ergonomics and movements. For example, by tracking a learner’s body ergonomics during safe lifting training scenarios, organizations can address skill gaps and reinforce standard safety behaviors. 

Full-session Playbacks 

Full-session playbacks allow instructors to watch an employee’s performance during training from start to finish, helping to identify proficiency gaps and more. 

Interactions and Scored Elements

Interactions and scored elements engage and motivate employees to perform at their best during training. Who wouldn’t want to inspire a workforce to stay on top of their game? 

Eye and Hand Tracking

Eye and hand-tracking capabilities are shaping the future of XR training metrics, as the newest VR headsets showcase higher precision for enterprise focus. There has also been incredible growth in augmented reality and new MR capabilities that use hand tracking to optimize user experience. 

5. Assess & Refine 

Every masterpiece needs some fine-tuning, especially before its official debut. Even some of the most coveted writers and creators in the world would likely opt to make one last revision to their work. After you pilot your XR training, leverage subject matter experts and collect user feedback to help assess and refine your immersive learning program. 

Feedback and evaluation are critical pieces of a successful training program. Perform a pilot test with a small group to see your program in action and determine what’s making a true difference in the learning process. Lean in when learners share candid feedback about their immersive experience. Crafting a post-pilot survey can also help your organization assess how well your innovative training program meets learning objectives, delivers realism, and improves employee confidence.

Review your metrics, check in with your team, and see how you’re doing! What can you improve on? What trends are on the horizon? Stay on top of your game! Falling behind can cost you money in resources, time, and safety incidents. 

Selecting The Right Use Case 

Identifying a strong use case to explore XR learning solutions is key. For example, safety training should equip learners with the right information and muscle memory to respond quickly to hazards and dangerous work scenarios. One method of selecting the right use case is to determine which training objectives could be supported best by experiential learning. 

Remember not to rush your XR program and set yourself up for failure. Experienced immersive learning providers will advise you to apply concrete learning principles in your training programs. By combining virtual reality or augmented reality solutions with your existing training program, your organization can optimize and enhance  Once you’ve selected the right use case with clear learning objectives, your organization can incorporate immersive learning into your learning and development program. 

Read More: Optimize Learning With the Right Use Case: Top Strategies for Selecting the Right Modality

So Long, Skill Gaps!

By implementing the best practices for immersive training, your organization will be successful in crushing skill gaps and empowering the workforce to perform at a new standard. Trying to get stakeholders on board? Make your case for investing in immersive technology with the right statistics to back your training initiative.

The latest advancements in immersive learning technologies enhance learner experiences and close the skill gaps that hurt your organization’s productivity the most. Discover how immersive training underscores the science of learning, caters to different learning styles, and delivers an array of business benefits. Explore blended learning, embrace innovation, and zap those skill gaps! Get in touch with the experts and start planning today!

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