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How to get people to adopt your LXP like Degreed

Published on
April 15, 2024
A collection of abstract nodes to represent the internal structure of a Learning Experience Platform – like plans and pathways in Degreed.
Charlie Kneen

In case you didn't know, Learning Management Systems are now called “Learning Experience Platforms”, or LXPs for short. They’re the same thing, but L&D thought that putting the word “experience” in the title would make them less terrible – they were wrong.

So, how can you make your LXP a success for your business? Well, I’ve been on the receiving end as a user, and ‘client side’ of the learning technology procurement process and have picked up a few insights along the way.

Adoption-first not technology-first

Where procurement teams tend to go wrong is technology; software is seen as a functional tool rather than an emotive experience. The same applies to many immature organisational designs, change management initiatives and customer experiences.

Viewing technology as a tool means the LXP procurement process becomes a shopping list of features based on requirements gathered from stakeholders in the business.

The glaring omission from this approach to procurement is user experience; even when you do include user experience as a criterion, it tends to be one isolated variable amongst hundreds. It’s also much harder to quantify, despite being one of the most important things determining the return on investment.

So, you have a Learning Experience Platform (LXP), now what?

You’ve invested in or found yourself with a new Learning Experience Platform (LXP). Perhaps the business saw it as a necessary addition, your peers endorsed it, or your boss made the decision. Either way, you may have come to realise that technology alone is not enough; its true value lies in adoption by users. In any case, you’re under pressure for the investment to be worthwhile, or you might find yourself in a difficult meeting with the executive team.

Our very first project as Solvd Together was the launch of Degreed with Novo Nordisk (big ups Peter Riber!), and collectively we’ve had many years of experience either building or buying learning tech. So, here are our top 10 tips for getting people to adopt your new Learning Experience Platform.

Solvd Together’s Top 10 ten tips for adopting a Learning Experience Platform

  1. Try before you buy
    Thanks, Captain Hindsight!” Well, if you’re reading this before you signed the 3-year contract for 3 million pounds, it might still bean option. Get a group of your most critical user groups in a room and let them test the new LXP. They’ll tell you if it’s worth the investment – and don’t trust any company that won’t give you a sandbox to play in or offer a cooling-off period in the contract.
  2. Consider turning features off
    It’s a myth perpetuated by IT and procurement professionals that people can’t work out how to use more than technology at a time. At home, we use hundreds of Apps to do very specific tasks, and their quality relies on the fact they do one or two things very well. Minimise the cognitive overload for your users and switch off or hide non-essential features– better yet, don’t pay for them.
  3. Create a Systems Map
    Any LXP that’s launched in isolation is doomed to fail. So, you need to have a clear picture of how the new technology will integrate into existing workflows and who it will affect. Then you need to consider how to position your new toy in a way that will feel relevant, rather than some terrible mandatory system being pushed from the top. There are plenty of templates online, for example, if you use Miro.
  4. Decide what business problem you want to solve
    Most organisations have lots of problems and none of them list ‘consumption of learning content’ among them. So, it’s on you as a valuable member of the workforce to ask your executive teams questions based on the company’s strategic goals. The LXP should then be deployed to address the challenges that will make a difference to the bottom-line.
  5. Segment your user groups
    Your organisation’s employees are not one homogeneous blob. That’s clear not only from their job roles and function but also from their personal characteristics. You can’t appeal to everyone all the time. But knowing what different users are likely to care about and how to position the value of the new LXP is a must.
  6. Deploy social proof
    Psychology dictates that people are likely to follow the crowd, and that they are suspicious of things are seem ‘other’. One way to use those biases to your advantage is to recruit a group of “influencers” in your organisation to create meaningful content specific to your user groups. Checkout our award-winning case study from BEKO Grundig.
  7. Accept that people don’t care about your stupid learning platform
    To be frank, people have better things to do than look at your learning content, so you have to go to them. You can provide value by communicating learning content through channels that the users frequent. The content itself needs to link to user pain points, and to find out what pain points people have. You have to do user research.
  8. Enlist learning professionals to use the platform effectively
    Your learning team are your vanguard for your learning platform but tread carefully. If they’re like most learning teams, the temptation might be to fill the platform with content, plans and programmes. This is an opportunity to get them onboard to anew way of thinking – human-centred learning design. Speak to us about our Degreed for Learning Professionals Toolkit (if you use Degreed) or if you want some more support around this transition.
  9. Design your Day 1 adoption campaign
    Literally, the first milliseconds of a user’s experience of your new Learning Experience Platform have a huge bearing on their long-term adoption. Map your users’ journey so that every touchpoint looks, feels, and functions like a consumer technology experience.
  10. Marketing campaigns – not corporate comms
    You can’t launch a platform with some directly worded corporate emails. Instead, think about a brand activation – high-quality events, videos, podcasts, banners, desk drops, leadership town halls, etc. All your messaging needs to be tailored based on your audience segmentation to demonstrate value depending on the user group.

Next steps?

Would you like some advice around your LXP adoption to see the return on investment? Then sign-up to our Virtual Lab with me and Peter Riber (Novo Nordisk). This will be an interactive session where you’ll have the opportunity to explore the big questions around LXPs:

  • How to communicate the value of an LXP to your organisation?
  • What are the most effective adoption strategies?
  • What does AI mean for the value of LXPs in your business?

Keep an eye out for the registration details in the coming weeks. Until then, keep on thinking about adoption and utility, not technology.