It is almost impossible at the moment to engage with any news article without hearing of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how it is transforming various industries. AI is billed as the biggest technological advance since the Internet, bringing the same likely dramatic changes to our lives. So what of training? What will happen to the corporate training industry – how does AI fit in?
Well AI is ‘emerging as a powerful tool to optimise training programs and deliver personalised learning experiences. There are diverse ways in which AI can revolutionise the corporate training market and drive positive outcomes for both employees and businesses’ - or at least that is what Chat GPT said when it was asked the question!
But let's examine some of the pro and cons of the argument and see where AI may have an influence in the world of training. The pros below were generated by AI and the discussion from the author (who would not claim any form of intelligence).
Personalised Learning Paths AI-powered algorithms can analyse individual employee data, including skills, learning preferences and performance metrics, to create personalised learning paths. By tailoring training content to meet each employee's specific needs and learning style, AI helps maximise engagement and knowledge retention, leading to more effective learning outcomes.
True – provided you are an organisation that can access such data – few can, I suspect - only the largest organisation would have such data, and only when an employee has passed some way down the learning path.
Adaptive Learning Platforms AI-enabled adaptive learning platforms can dynamically adjust the difficulty level and content based on each learner's progress. These platforms use real-time data to identify areas of strength and weakness, allowing learners to focus on topics they need the most help with, leading to more efficient and targeted learning.
This is a significant opportunity and, on those occasions when training means self-paced training via an LMS, AI enabled platforms will deliver far better results. When training is instructor led this will not apply. Indeed, one might argue that self-paced will morph to Instructor led training - with AI being the instructor.
Content Curation and Recommendation AI algorithms can analyse vast amounts of training content to curate and recommend the most relevant and up-to-date resources to employees. This content curation ensures that learners have access to the latest and most valuable materials, saving time and effort in searching for suitable resources.
This is the threat – training companies invest large amounts of time and effort in the development of training materials. To have AI ride rough shod over the Intellectual Property Rights of creators suggests content owners need to ensure lock down and preferably DRM (Digital Rights Management) protection. If AI is helping in the re-writing of material, fine, but, if it is stealing from sources, not so good!
Natural Language Processing (NLP) for Virtual Assistants. Virtual assistants powered by NLP can offer a more interactive and conversational learning experience. Employees can ask questions, seek clarification and receive instant feedback, simulating a one-on-one training session without the need for a human instructor.
AI becomes the instructor for self-paced learning - provided of course the delegate knows what questions to ask.
Gamified Learning and Engagement. AI can be used to design gamified learning experiences that motivate and engage employees through challenges, rewards and friendly competition. Gamification enhances participation and boosts learning motivation, making training sessions more enjoyable and effective.
Taking relatively dry content and using AI to overlay games to create more engaging training content and doing this quickly and easily, sounds like a pretty good use of AI
Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) Training. AI-powered VR and AR technologies enable immersive and realistic training experiences. Employees can practice real-life scenarios in a risk-free environment, enhancing practical skills and decision-making abilities.
Interview training with an avatar? Or maybe customer service training with the unreasonable customer avatar. Powerful stuff – and maybe best suited to a blended environment as one of a number of tools. It is difficult to assess whether interaction with AI gives better learning experiences then interaction with other delegates. Time, and some measurement, will tell.
This article can only ever be an opinion at a point in time. Events are moving quickly and AI will present both opportunities and threats – naturally. The issue for any training business is not to ignore AI but to try and understand and assess it. For some, AI may have little impact, for others, it may revolutionise. PDI would love to hear your thoughts – firstname.lastname@example.org