2020 Training Trends: What’s Really Worth Your Investment?


Based on what we see happening in the L&D industry, here’s a look at the top three trends in training and development that you need to keep your eye on for the coming year.

Trend #1: 360-Degree Certification

We’re long past the point of a certification exam or a series of inconsistent classes being enough to guarantee readiness, let alone success. The future of corporate learning lends itself toward a 360-degree view of certification.

By nature, 360-degree certification is holistic. Begin by identifying a threshold that learners must meet before they are considered certified. Choose inputs that train and test knowledge, skills, and behavior.

Then, use your learning management system (LMS) to create a unique formula of weighted inputs to automate the employee certification process. Inputs may include:

  • an in-person training event
  • video role play
  • coaching sessions or observation
  • mini knowledge checks.

The list could go on but each input is used in combination with the others to collectively “certify” your rep.

Don’t stop at a one-time certification. Track employee training and recertify reps with refresher courses at various checkpoints in their careers to ensure knowledge retention over time. Reimagine how this will transform what “customer readiness” means for new hires and veteran employees.

Trend #2: More Innovative Event Management

An LMS that is effectively being used is an integral part of an employee’s development. If you’re not leveraging your learning platform for event management to pulse engaging pre-work, drive community traffic, and gamify training events with ongoing opportunities to earn points and rewards, now is the time.


Games during training is one of those learning trends that will become more influential every year. Use games and gamification at events to educate, improve the experience, and fight disengagement as well as create an environment of collaboration and healthy competition.

For example, a pharmaceutical national sales meeting is a great event to implement games and gamification into. Use an LMS to award points or badges for various activities so participants can win a grand prize. Possible activities can include:

  • attending various sessions
  • tweeting what they learned using an event-branded hashtag
  • networking with other attendees by exchanging business cards.

Disengaged learners are the bane of any event’s existence. The bottom line: Craft a learning culture that motivates and engages employees with the help of an LMS.


Trend #3: Personalized Learning Through AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) is no stranger to L&D or the world at this point.

AI at Work, a study conducted by Oracle and Future Workplace, discovered only 6 percent of HR professionals are currently using AI in the workplace despite that HR leaders believe AI will positively affect both L&D (27 percent) and performance management (26 percent) over the next two years.

When AI is implemented into an LMS, it creates a personalized learning environment that becomes more intelligent over time. AI can improve employees’ learning experiences by:

  • identifying knowledge gaps in training then recommend the programs needed to strengthen that particular area.
  • creating a personalized course path using a blended learning approach and selecting the right modality for training content.
  • measuring training effectiveness through facial recognition to track what is being practically applied on the field.

The future of AI in the L&D space is limitless. If you don’t start adopting AI technology into your training now, you’ll be limiting the potential of your business and employees later.

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Excellent article. I am really excited about the part on "Measuring Training Effectiveness by Facial Recognition". Does anyone know how?
I would love to learn more about this also "Measuring Training Effectiveness by FR"
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