Learning trends

Are chatbots the future of coaching?

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Chatbot and new trainings programs

The modern world no longer rewards us just for what we know, but for what we can do with what we know.

Andreas Schleicher, Director for Education and Skills at the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development, summing up professional training.

Teaching should be specific yet cross-disciplinary, personalized yet collaborative, and all while using the right tools. It’s no surprise that digital learning has become a key component of any training program, especially given its emphasis on continuing development. And in the last few years, several innovations have brought learners in from the cold. One example is chatbots. AI programs could make a measurable difference in the effectiveness of a training program. So, could chatbots really become the trainers of tomorrow?

Chatbots: trainers 3.0

There’s a new kid in the e-learning town: the chatbot. Intuitive, mobile, and easy to use, the chatbot is increasingly becoming a powerful motivational and support tool for training. Chatbots can communicate with learners and respond to their questions in a targeted, specific way. Despite the positives, bots are no substitute for real human trainers. They are meant to serve as an additional tool that supports digital-learning experiences with answers to common questions. For everything else—context, tailored questions, personal encouragement when learners lose motivation or fall behind—human trainers have a key role to play.

That said, we have to accept that chatbots are getting better and better at communicating with people. The responses these virtual assistants give are sometimes quite impressive; when fully integrated into a company’s digital-learning programs, chatbots can be especially valuable.

The right information at the right time: a must-have for successful digital training

Some 29% of training supervisors with an interest in digital learning would like to make their training more effective. And 21% of them want to be more responsive to business challenges. As for learners, 27% think having the right training content for them is a decisive factor (according to survey conducted by TalentSoft).

To ensure that chatbots give the right answers, subject-matter experts are responsible for programming them with a myriad of possible options to choose from. These human chatbot managers must effectively teach and coach the bots. Investment at this stage is essential if you want the user experience to be as personalized as possible.
Chatbots also have another advantage: they give learners their independence back. Learning is no longer confined to conventional work schedules; whenever learners get stuck, they just have to ask their chatbot for help.

With chatbots, companies are better equipped to respond to every learner on an individual basis, which is something that humans simply cannot do. Even with limited resources, companies can depend on these ever-available virtual assistants to give their training programs an edge.