Gadgets are great so with the announcement of the iPad Air, I couldn’t be happier. iPads (and tablets as a whole) aren’t just for playing Angry Birds and checking Facebook on the couch; they have a very important role to play when it comes to employee training and performance management. No joke.
I recall when the original iPad came out several years ago. Truthfully, I was a bit skeptical because I just saw it as an oversized iPhone without phone capabilities. It was a game changer and I was glad to be proven wrong. Now I spend more time on it (when I can wrest it from the hands of my wife) than I do my desktop computer. A tablet is the perfect form factor when you are working away from a desk or an office.
Putting Tablets To Work
The new thinner design and more powerful processor of the iPad Air are definitely appealing to the consumer. Like any tablet they fulfill a number of important criteria that are useful in the workplace:
The standard sized iPad and a comparable Android tablet fit easily into a bag or briefcase. The iPad Mini and smaller Android tablets are even more portable.
Tablets by default have Wi-Fi included. Some tablets are able to access cellular data.
There are a variety of cases fit a variety of work situations - whether that’s a lighter case day to day use in an office environment to more durable cases that can withstand the demands of working in the field.
Most importantly, they are an excellent delivery mechanism for employees to be able to access their online training through a learning management system (LMS) and for you to be able to measure their performance.
Anytime, Anywhere Training (Almost)
While tablets make a great tool for online training, there are a few caveats to keep in mind that will help make the training experience optimal and enjoyable for everyone.
If you have existing online training that is in Flash-format it simply won’t work on any iPad or Android tablet - even the new iPad Air.
There are a few solutions though. If you have access to the original source files to the course, you or the custom elearning developer can republish the training in HTML5-format which can be rendered by mobile devices. You just need to make sure that the course authoring tool is able to do so first. More and more course authoring tools are offering this feature as mobile learning increases.
Furthermore, the online training may be designed to viewed on a laptop or desktop PC. Modern tablets can easily display the LMS website or online training. It can be done better though.
Responsively-designed courses adapt to best fit the size of the screen they’re being viewed on. What this means for your workforce is that they won’t need to zoom into the course in order to see text or images. Once you see it in action, you’ll understand the difference.
When we test the mobile-ready courses that we create at Vantage Path, we use a variety of mobile devices in order to test the responsiveness of the courses and LMS as well as their performance. We may need to get the iPad Air though….. just to be completely thorough in our testing.
Don’t throw out your current hardware!
Despite the temptation and how wonderful the iPad Air is, there’s no need to throw out your existing hardware. They’re still powerful devices that can help deliver training to you employees in the office or in the field.
Regardless of the medium, you need to make sure that the training you deliver to your employees is of the highest quality. Find out more by downloading our free ebook How To Create Performance Based Elearning.