In today’s world, communication is often shortened to emojis and cell phone texts with words misspelled (or made up) for brevity. If we need to find something, we can get that piece of information the moment we need it as long as we have Wi-Fi.  If an email goes more than one day unanswered, we are considered not responsive. We are accustomed to immediacy.

In 2015, Microsoft completed a study that concluded the human attention span has decreased. People now generally lose concentration after eight seconds. Microsoft theorized that the changes were a result of the brain’s ability to adapt and change itself over time and a weaker attention span may be a side effect of evolving to a mobile Internet.

What can help us retain needed on-the-job information despite our shrinking attention spans?  The answer might just lie with microlearning!  Microlearning takes small content chunks and delivers them in an easy-to-understand format.  This translates to how we teach or provide needed on-the-job information. Employees want short spurts of learning in bite-sized chunks they can engage with on their own time or at the exact time they need it! Technology users’ brains are already trained (even at young ages) to focus for short periods of time, absorb necessary information, and move on.

We actually participate in microlearning every day whether we know it or not.  We catch bits and pieces of the morning news as we eat breakfast or get ready for work. We get short bursts of news articles from our cell phones or social media throughout the day.

Globalization had led workplaces to have an enormous amount of data, leading to an overwhelming number of topics for training. Microlearning gives relevant, immediate-use information to your workforce quickly.  Engaging content will keep employees’ attention, is easy to transfer on the job, and can be reviewed quickly and updated the just as fast.

According to studies have shown that small bursts of information are more easily held in the memory, especially when put to use closely after having learned it. The structure of microlearning allows for learners to experience these bursts of information with immediate reinforcement, and is typically conducted through interactive questions. The delivery of knowledge within a microlearning format ensures that learners can complete content while maintaining optimal attention levels for high retention.

As the corporate world continues to adjust to new media and technology, research will continue to lead the way. Based on current information, it would seem that microlearning is the most effective way to keep employees satisfied and informed in their industry.

Thanks for sticking through to the end of this article – we showed those studies that not all of us have lost the ability to focus!