After all the decisions regarding the Managed Learning Service have been made it is time to implement it. Like any strategy, there are various steps that need to be completed in order for the strategy to run smoothly. We have come up with the following 5 steps that need to be accomplished to implement the best Managed Learning Service.
You need to understand your company’s strategy and needs as well as your Learning and Development departments in order to see whether a Managed Learning Service will align with each of these. Before any specific tactics can be created, you have to be sure that this kind of service will keep your company heading in the desired direction. If the service is unlikely to fit within the overall strategy then other options may need to be looked at to ensure long term success. Consider the implications of a relationship. Although many of the providers out there aim to work with L&D rather than replace and take control of the department – relinquishing any control is often something people aren’t prepared to do. Put your own personal preferences behind what is best for your organisation. Remember that you control and own the process.
Targets and Requirements
If a Managed Learning Service would fit into the overall strategy then it is time to look at exactly what you want the provider to do once the relationship has been formed. Look at the skills gaps in your department. Do you want to reduce administration times? Cut costs? Increase the quality of the training you employ? Ideally you probably want to do all 3 but what is the biggest priority right now? Create targets for each of these and then approach the provider. By knowing exactly what you want from the relationship both parties know where they stand and what is expected.
Approach a Provider
At this stage you know you want a Managed Learning Service and you know why you want it. You can also say exactly what needs to be done and what constitutes a success and a failure. Now you need to go out there and find out who can fulfil that obligation for you. Remember, certain companies will likely be better at different aspects of the service so choose the one that is best suited to you. The best way to do this is to ask for case studies, testimonials and ask previous customers. This will give you a good idea of the company’s strengths and weaknesses. The other vital thing is to make sure you have 100% trust in the one you choose. Depending on the level of service you are looking for you may be putting a heavy reliance on this company – so if you don’t feel they will meet your expectations every time then keep looking. The strength of this relationship is likely to play a big role in the success of the partnership.
Now you have chosen the Managed Learning Service provider you will be working with it is time to formulate the plan together. Look again at the needs you have identified as well as take into consideration those observed by the provider and decide on what actions need to be taken and the timeframes for each. Make sure both are happy with the outcome as you don’t want to be bullied into extra services but you also don’t want to ignore their advice and then blame them when the results aren’t what were expected. Delegate responsibilities to each party and create a Service Level Agreement so that you are both on the same page and legally protected.
Trial and Evaluate
It is often a good idea to ease in the overall plan gradually, looking at individual parts separately and looking at what each are doing right and wrong. A trial run or pilot is a good strategy to take. Can the Managed Learning Service provider work with a small section of the business first so you can review? If so, you can then evaluate this together with your provider, give and receive feedback and then ensure both parties are happy to roll out on a larger scale.