After a few years of working in the L&D industry, I have discovered a dirty little secret. Before you ask, I quickly got over the idea of writing the ultimate “Kitchen Confidential” expose of talent development practices, but I did make it a personal campaign to try to fix this slightly embarrassing failure among our professional community.

OK – did I get your attention? Well, I should have! If you’ve read this far and are in the talent development profession, then you’ve done it.

You can explain anything


Explainer videos for complex subjects?


You’ve used every chance you can to avoid measuring the efficacy of the training you produce – why?

Well come on, gaze deep into your inner soul – OK not that deep! You have to admit it, if you’ve just made a nice Storyline course, the last thing you need is to have a bunch of students/learners saying it does not meet their standards.

The easy-life is to publish your modules, bask in your boss’s approval, and then move on to the next thing on your to-do list.

A quick health warning — those days are so over.

All this big-data stuff and the training robots that are after your job is a hint that all the data we generate from training is capable of making you into a Superman/woman or an irrelevant husk of your former self (OK a bit over the top). Data analysis, xAPI and modern practices are entirely changing the landscape of training.

Imagine a 3D simulation of a practical task. Big data, AI and xAPI can not only tell you what your learners did but where they went, what happened and when. You can compare their performance with everyone else who ever did the simulation. Elements of their progress that are sub-par can be addressed. The AI can interject when the learner seems to struggle. It literally is a revolution. Oh, and it’s not that hard or expensive.

So, brace yourself for increasing demand for better analytics and reporting. As finance departments take greater advantage of AI-driven analysis, they see a trend — companies spend a great deal on training but get very little ROI data back. The big guys are onto this, check out any conference agenda and see the numerous sessions by large organizations on just this topic.

The solution? Abandon SCORM and its limp data capture. Embrace xAPI and a LRS to capture data. Tap into the cool dude in finance who handles data analysis and then start flashing those charts that not only show the value of training but your effectiveness as a trainer.