Mobile learning solutions great, but don't forget that many employees sit at desks for much of the day.

Go Mobile, but Keep Career Development in the Office

We just got back from the ATD International Conference and Expo in Atlanta and we’re feeling pretty pumped and inspired.

One thing we noticed at the conference was a great deal of enthusiasm about mobile. There’s a lot of buzz in the HR space about how to make learning and career development easily accessible to employees via their mobile devices.

And, that is fantastic. We certainly endorse mobile-friendly learning solutions. But, companies need to be aware of what message they may be sending by emphasizing mobile first learning.

For one thing, there’s a certain assumption that comes with mobile. When we think about mobile learning, we’re likely envisioning sales reps out in the field or busy retail specialists on the floor who only have a smartphone or a tablet on-hand. Mobile would then indeed be the best way to get through to them.

But, in reality, many employees are still working in an office on a desktop or laptop computer. When we talk about mobile learning, we have to be careful not to inadvertently communicate the message that learning and career development is something you only do on your own time outside of work or when you’re on the go.

In order to truly facilitate a learning culture, it must be made clear that learning is something employees should do while at work sitting at their desks and not only on their phones, during their commutes, or on the weekends when they could be taking time for themselves.

For all the lip-service being paid to cultivating cultures of learning and development, the only way organizations can pull it off  is by providing employees with the time, resources, and access they need to learn on the job.