In recent years, more and more participants of the classroom-based Marketer Technology and Sales Training (MTST) program have requested digital learning to supplement their experience and to expand learning beyond the classroom.
Providing a new learning channel that is available to learners at all tiimes and gives opportunities for social networking and engagement.
PERC surveyed propane industry representatives and a digital learning expert and defined the top MTST-related training needs of the propane industry, defined digital course requirements, and brainstormed ways of promoting digital sales training to the propane industry. Using the findings from several workshops they conducted, PERC needed support for their digital mission.
PERC initially partnered with GP Strategies, who designed and developed four sleek, modern, highly interactive eLearning modules discussing advanced training topics such as the Propane Energy Pod and Propane Autogas School Bus Market. Additionally, GP Strategies designed and is in the process of delivering 12 webinars on advanced sales, marketing, and technology topics.
PERC selected two vendors for support. The first, GP Strategies, brought expertise in content development, learning design, and performance support strategy. The second, Intrepid, provided the digital learning software platform upon which the final digital solution would be constructed.
Working closely together, these groups designed and implemented a learner-driven content platform that brings together existing PERC marketer resources along with new, custom-designed eLearning courses, webinars, videos, and other materials to create structured, highly interactive learner journeys. The robust features of the Intrepid Platform enhance the experience with gamification elements such as points, badges, and interactive tiles and social media features such as message boards, bookmarking, and “liking.”
Once PERC had partnered with Intrepid to stand up the new learning platform site, GP Strategies worked closely with PERC to identify the initial learning topics and the site structure. GP Strategies then designed
initial learning paths, incorporating the custom eLearning content previously created, and fleshed out those learning paths through content curation of existing PERC resources and external web content, including videos, white papers, job aids, e-books, webinars, and other tools and resources. This content was structured using the designed learning paths and enhanced through the use of learning activities and capstone virtual learning projects.
This project is particularly innovative thanks to the use of the learner-guided platform, where learners pick and choose the learning they want to receive, and the structure provided is only provisional. Additionally, learning elements were designed to be bite-sized, allowing these busy professionals to “hop on and hop off” when they needed or wanted to. Finally, the curation of existing content allowed GP Strategies, Intrepid, and PERC to build a customized learning experience by accessing resources from a variety of areas and maximizing the capabilities of the Intrepid platform. The ongoing curation of content ensures that the learning experience will continue to stay fresh and exciting for PERC’s audience.
GP Strategies worked closely with PERC to test and validate all custom learning developed and the overall digital learning experience with representatives of the propane industry through a series of pilot tests and walkthroughs. This ensured that the digital learning was sufficiently sophisticated to be engaging while still simple and user-friendly enough that even novices could access the system and easily navigate and learn.
The learner-driven content platform brought together existing PERC marketer resources along with new, custom-designed eLearning courses, webinars, videos, and other materials to create structured, highly interactive learner journeys.
PERC’s customers are propane marketers around the US; therefore, PERC itself does not directly benefit from training. Instead, as an industry research and training non-profit, PERC exists to serve these marketers. The Deployment of the Digital MTST Platform:
Delivers a direct, concrete benefit to these marketers by providing a new learning channel that is available to learners at all times
- Requires NO TRAVEL, can be consumed in short bursts
- Continually EVOLVES
- Provides access to advanced learning topics not available in the classroom training
- Provides OPPORTUNITIES to advanced learning topics not available in the classroom training
The digital platform launched in March 2017. PERC immediately saw over 200 participants self-enroll within the first two weeks. Initial user feedback is strongly positive, with interest across the industry. GP Strategies plans to continue deployment of new content and new learner journeys on the Intrepid platform, ensuring that the digital MTST experience remains fresh for learners, offering opportunities to draw in new learners and providing rewards for existing users to revisit the site.