5 Ways to Engage Deskless Workers with Learning

A significant portion of the workforce are deskless workers and flexibility and mobility are paramount. Often on the move or stationed in non-traditional settings, these employees pose a unique challenge when providing continuous learning opportunities. Engaging deskless workers with learning initiatives is crucial for their professional development and the overall success of an organisation. Here are five practical ways to ensure that deskless workers remain actively involved in the learning process:

Mobile Learning Platforms

The first step towards effective engagement recognises that deskless workers are not tethered to a desk or computer. Using smartphones or tablets and leveraging mobile learning platforms allows employees to access training materials anytime, anywhere. This approach caters to the on-the-go nature of deskless work, ensuring that learning is seamlessly integrated into their daily routines. This is particularly relevant as companies transition during the return to office phase, where flexibility in learning is crucial.

These platforms should be user-friendly, with content optimised for mobile devices. Employers can invest in interactive modules, videos, and podcasts that are not only informative but also engaging. Microlearning, a strategy that delivers content in small, digestible chunks, is particularly effective for deskless workers, allowing them to grasp essential information during short breaks or downtime. Ensuring remote employee engagement remains high through these platforms can also support those who continue to work remotely.

Gamification Techniques

Gamification injects fun and competition into the learning process, making it an ideal strategy for engaging deskless workers. By incorporating game-like elements such as points, badges, and leaderboards into training programmes, organisations can tap into the natural human desire for achievement and recognition.

For instance, create quizzes or challenges related to job-specific skills or industry knowledge. Rewarding employees for completing these tasks motivates them to participate actively and fosters a sense of accomplishment. The competitive aspect can encourage healthy peer-to-peer competition, fostering a collaborative learning culture among deskless workers. This approach can be effective both in-office and for remote employee engagement.

Personalised Learning Paths

Deskless workers often have diverse roles and responsibilities. Tailoring learning paths to individual needs ensures that the training is relevant and directly applicable to their job functions. Use data analytics to understand employees' strengths, weaknesses, and learning preferences. This information can then be used to create personalised learning experiences.

With personalised learning paths, deskless workers can progress at their own pace, focusing on areas that require improvement or acquiring new skills specific to their roles. This approach not only enhances engagement but also maximises the effectiveness of the training, as employees can see the direct impact on their job performance. Personalised paths are crucial during the return to office period to address varied learning needs.

Social Learning Communities

Encourage collaboration and knowledge-sharing among deskless workers by creating social learning communities. Utilise internal communication tools or dedicated platforms where employees can connect, ask questions, and share insights. This fosters a sense of community and enables peer-to-peer learning.

Consider incorporating mentorship programs where experienced deskless workers can guide newer employees. This facilitates knowledge transfer and strengthens the sense of belonging within the organisation. Additionally, periodic virtual meetings or forums can be organised to discuss common challenges, ensuring that deskless workers feel connected and supported in their learning journey. These communities are essential for maintaining remote employee engagement as well.

Recognition and Incentives

Recognising and rewarding the efforts of deskless workers in their learning endeavours is crucial for sustained engagement. Implement a system that acknowledges achievements and uses certifications, digital badges, or public commendations. This boosts morale and creates a positive feedback loop, motivating employees to continue investing time and effort in their professional development.

Incentive programs, such as promotions, salary advancements, or additional responsibilities, can be tied to completing training milestones. This approach aligns individual learning goals with organisational objectives, reinforcing the importance of continuous learning for career advancement. Recognising achievements during the return to office phase can also help in re-engaging employees.

In conclusion, engaging deskless workers in learning requires a strategic and tailored approach to accommodating their unique work circumstances. By embracing mobile platforms, gamification, personalised learning paths, social communities, and recognition programs, organisations can create a dynamic and inclusive learning environment that empowers deskless workers to thrive. This benefits individual employees and contributes to the overall success and adaptability of the organisation in today's rapidly evolving business landscape.