The ubiquity of mobile devices is undeniable. They have taken over almost every aspect of our lives — ordering food, getting a ride, finding a date. Few actions cannot be done with a smartphone. 

So, why is it that mobile phones do not occupy as much space in the way we learn at work? There is plenty of blame to go around. Companies have weak device policies, outdated security concerns, and lack mobile-friendly content and platforms. Despite being around for more than a decade, the uptake on mobile learning has not reached the levels that were predicted just a few years ago. 

Inkling decided to do something about that and they’ve approached it in a way that makes mobile learning make sense. 

For too many companies, the idea of mobile learning was simply to make everything they had “available” on a mobile device. This didn’t mean the content should be mobile, nor did it mean that it worked well on mobile devices. 

Inkling’s native mobile app aims to help companies leverage mobile learning when and where they need it. With its responsive design, the app gives everyone the same great experience, regardless of the device they bring to the job.

The app is designed specifically for operational learning for field employees. For organizations with groups of deskless workers, a mobile learning app can be critical. It gives field employees access to the knowledge, training and communication they need, regardless of where they are. They won’t have to stop a job or task — or worse — return to headquarters to get what they need. The mobile app ensures that field employees have access to the most up-to-date information, no matter how rapidly it changes.

Learners can search for information using QR codes and voice commands, just like they would on their phones. Because it is native, it looks and feels like a mobile experience, not just a shrunken version of a webpage. Additionally, it means everything is available offline, so connectivity is not an issue. Once the device re-connects, everything is synced.

Many organizations with field employees are reluctant to embrace mobile learning because they are typically hourly employees. While mobile devices are great for learning when it is convenient, they can be problematic during off-hours. Inkling’s app includes a geofencing feature that allows a company to control where employees can access material based on an address and defined radius. Geofencing also adds an extra layer of personalization and contextualization to the learning by letting the learning platform use location as part of what it knows about the learner.

Organizations that feel mobile learning has not lived up to its promise need to rethink their approach. By using mobile in the specific, targeted way Inkling has, there is the potential to open up new opportunities for the deskless workforce. 

David Wentworth, Principal Analyst, Brandon Hall Group

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