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The Future of Corporate Education: Artificial Intelligence
Jan. 2, 2018

Ask someone what comes to mind when they hear “Artificial Intelligence in Education” and they will likely reference the futuristic robots portrayed in movies and TV shows like “The Jetsons”.

In truth, artificial intelligence (AI) in education extends so much further than the teacher. AI is becoming a staple of instructional design because of its ability to integrate technology and enhance learning. AI  technology tools, ranging from whiteboard tools to assessment tools, encourage learners to digest content more meaningfully while enhancing comprehension by targeting their learning style.

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Artificial Intelligence in Corporate Training

AI isn’t just limited to traditional academic settings. More and more corporate training departments use AI in their instructional designs. Before we all jump on the AI education bandwagon by flooding our employees with e-Learning, Prezi presentations, and robots, let’s pinpoint how AI and education should intersect.

The age-old question in education persists: how do we know if our training is effective? Specifically, does our training result in employees adapting behavior that makes them more productive? Thanks to AI technology, we can keep modern learners better engaged with real-world applications for new skills, increasing the likelihood that information will be understood and retained.

The Shift to Employee-Centered Design

Resist the urge to add AI to your education programs unless you have indicators that it can increase employee productivity. The AI tools that integrate into the learning content should support the design, not drive the design. Today’s learners are looking for content that has an employee-centered design. Students want learning to be just as easy and intuitive as any app on their smartphones. Great AI tools provide a slicker experience. Again, how do we demonstrate effectiveness?

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Using AI to Measure Results

As I wrote in June 2017, you can increase end-user adoption by focusing on change management efforts throughout a project. Armed with data and insight, corporate trainers and designers can determine whether employees are becoming more productive.

Recently, we partnered with an AmLaw 10 client to develop their end-user adoption and change management strategy during their CRM deployment. The client was sharply focused on using AI to deliver meaningful data to the firm’s end users. Tapping into natural curiosity and a competitive spirit, the business development team created insightful one-click-away reports and newsletters. End users now devour this monthly information to see if they’re listed as “top individual contributors” and “top practice groups.” The firm used AI to support their end-user training goals and have seen firm-wide adoption of the system.

Education Is Still about Effectiveness

AI is the latest buzzword and it’s a huge realm of data science, including machine learning. But data without context is not meaningful. The data leads to information, which leads to knowledge. Effective corporate education takes knowledge to the next step by demonstrating insight about our learners and their behavior. Leveraging technology tools can provide learners with a personalized feel, getting us halfway to the fundamental goal of changing behavior. Using AI-driven insights to show effectiveness is the critical sweet spot in next-generation, effective corporate education.

Elena Cutri
Elena Cutri

Elena is a lifelong learner at heart and an educator by trade. To her, learning is a direct route for people to live intelligent and informed lives. As Director of Education Services for LexisNexis, she partners with clients around the world to guide their software adoption strategy. Elena has spoken at industry events on change management, end user adoption and professional development. She leads a team of professional trainers who create effective and engaging learning for today’s Modern Learner. Outside of work, Elena is an adjunct professor at a Chicago college teaching public speaking and group communication skills. She volunteers as Chair of a 3,000-parent network for a Special Education Resource Group in her community. She leads a Girl Scout troop and teaches work-readiness classes for adults with special needs. She learns the most, though, from her husband and 3 children. Elena holds her MA in Corporate Communications from Northern Illinois University and a MBA in Marketing Management from Loyola University.

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