Across the business landscape, a new generation of worker is taking over. Millennials are already the largest plurality in the workforce, and by 2019, they’ll be over 75% of it. “In the next 10 to 15 years, we’re going to have the greatest transfer of knowledge that’s ever taken place,” researcher Chip Espinoza told Bloomberg News about the need to groom millennial employees for leadership positions. Making sure this shift goes smoothly will be the biggest challenge of the next decade for L&D.
The key will be microlearning, a method that uses small moments of learning to drive better job performance and development. It works for every employee, but because it’s the first training method created by and for 21st century learners, it’s especially useful for millennials. Here’s why:
Short content speaks to distracted learners.
Millennials have elevated distraction into an art form. They expect information to arrive not in big bundles, but in a torrent of small morsels. Microlearning works the same way. It takes only a tiny bit of the learner’s time and helps them apply the lesson in real time, before they have a chance to forget it.
Microlearning is the most effective way to learn on mobile.
Millennials constantly turn to a smartphone for moments of “micro-leisure,” according to AdWeek. Microlearning on their favorite devices is a natural progression. Microlearning requires users to consume and interact with tiny pieces of content on the fly, while they’re working—exactly what smartphone users are already used to doing.
Bite-size content is searchable and on-demand.
Microlearning’s bite-size learning modules meet the modern learner’s desire for searchable, habitually pulled information. Imagine if training assigned by their manager felt as natural as looking something up on Google. Microlearning makes it happen.
More learning moments mean more personalization
Millennials expect technology to anticipate their tendencies and desires before they even begin using it; it’s why app personalization technology has grown 332% from 2014–2015. Microlearning makes learning more personalized in two ways. First, it makes available the exact piece of information your learners need, the moment they need it. Second, it generates many times the user data that older training systems did, which enables L&D to exploit next-generation people analytics for the first time.
Millennial employees get what they want most: better learning
Microlearning’s most attractive quality is its efficacy: short material leads to 20% more information retention than learning with long-form material. This means that millennials, who want quality development opportunities at work more than cash, benefits, or job security, get the one job perk they can’t live without.