7 Ways Big Data Can Transform Training

If you’re not using Big Data, you’re already behind the curve – and if you’re working in the training industry, you need to be maximizing its transformational power right now! Big Data is an incredible source of information on customer behavior, industry trends, and other such useful details.

Training strategies and techniques have evolved over time and have become much more flexible, with an ever-increasing volume of training solutions delivered online. The upshot of this is that clients want a fast and effective point-of-use service that generates consistent results – and Big Data can help training companies deliver this. Let’s look at what big data can do to transform training:

Understanding your users

All training strategies are designed with the user in mind; this includes the employees and professionals that receive the training as well as customers that receive the benefit of that training. Big Data reveals both employee and customer expectations so training companies can find the right balance between the two and design a program that works well for them. There are a number of ways in which this data can help alter and improve training strategies:

  • Companies can collect data on what customers expect from their employees and services. Understanding customer expectations can help companies develop training strategies designed to improve customer service and experience. That has a big impact on the company’s reputation and can bring in more revenue.


  • Companies can collect Big Data on what kind of training employees and professionals need and what can help improve the overall productivity of the workforce. They can also identify training strategies and techniques that don’t provide good results and have a negative impact on the employees.

Big Data provides information on people, and training is designed for people so they’re the perfect match!Companies that recognise this connection are able to use Big Data to its best potential.


Assessing the impact of training

Some training methods and strategies are more effective than others. Training companies need to recognise what works and eliminate what doesn’t. Big Data tools can collect information on engagement, interest, response, and have a long-term impact on the skills and productivity of the professional. This information can help companies determine which strategies are more effective and garner interest from the employees so they can utilise their resources accordingly.

Without Big Data, companies won’t be able to keep track of the impact of training on employees and won’t notice the difference in performance until a few weeks or months down the line when the training translates into sales.

Minimizing employee loss

No company wants to have a revolving door when it comes to employees – they want to retain as many of them as they can. With the average cost of replacing an employee coming in at 21% of their salary, this is understandable – but retaining employees isn’t as easy as it used to be, especially because millennials value job satisfaction, company ethics and culture, and growth above monetary rewards.Big Data can help recognise patterns and keep track of engagement from high-skill and high-risk employees.

Companies can keep track of signs like low-engagement, lack of participation in training programs, slower productivity, and other such factors in order to determine if the employee is about to attrite. They can then alter the training programs and revisit the work culture to provide them incentives to stay. The prospect of greater skills and growth has a big influence on millennials and other employees as well.


Helping manage your LMS

LMS stands for Learning Management System and it is an online training platform that provides consistent and continual training to employees. Companies can keep providing a rich supply of fresh content and training programs to employees and keep track of factors like participation, overall engagement, impact, etc. They can track which employees complete the training and which ones abandon them midway due to loss of interest.

LMSsare a very effective way to combine Big Data and online training tools to make training accessible to everyone. Some employees and professionals might even invest some of their own time to advance their skills and learn something new related to their profession.

Identifying diversification opportunities

Professionals can use the online training platforms to not only improve their work and productivity in their current job but also to add new income streams and diversify their skill set. That benefits everyone including the employer, employee, customers, and the business. A diverse and evolving skill set will ensure professionals remain relevant and productive as technology evolves so they won’t have to face the risk of redundancy.

Linking performance and training for better return on investment

Every company wants to know how much its investment in training returns in improved performance – but these metrics are hard to find, with 36% of businesses unsure if their training program is delivering results. However, integrating Big Data with online training program enables companies to see if their investment in training leads to improvement in employee performance. They can then check if that improvement leads to increased revenue down the line and adds to the profitability of their business.This seamless tracking in real time can help companies immediately identify problems (if any) with their training programs and alter the strategies accordingly.


This helps minimise the investment in training and makes the system far more efficient. Setting up effective, practical and interesting training systems can be quite expensive, especially for companies with a larger employee base. Even quick changes and small savings can help reduce the financial burden by a substantial margin.

Delivering point of need training

One of the biggest advantages of modern training platforms based on Big Data is that people can access it from anywhere. All the information is stored securely in the Cloud and there are a number of mobile apps and online portals available to help access the information.

Employees and professionals can use their work computer, personal smart phones, smart TVs, tablets etc, to access the training programs at any time and from anywhere. The added convenience can make them more inclined to learn and increase overall engagement.


Big Data is a powerful source of information and can revolutionize training and efficiency if used correctly. It can help professionals expand their skill set and add more useful tools to their arsenal – and if you work in training and you’re not using it, then it’s never too late to start!


Ashley Andrews is an Inbound Marketing Strategist at Activia Training, a UK-based training provider specialising in improving delegates' workplace performance in business skills, management development and IT applications. Ashley is passionate about sales and management issues, and regularly blogs about these - and many other topics - on the Activia blog.