Coming April 2024 SLT will launch an amazing tool for all L&D professionals who want to improve their ‘Learning Analytics’ knowledge and skills; our brand new and innovative Learning Analytics Toolkit.

The Learning Analytics Toolkit is a treasure trove of video’s, articles, case studies, performance support materials, practice materials, knowledge checks and challenging exercises to help any L&D professional to increase their knowledge and skills in learning analytics.

Whether you are new to analytics, or you want to take your analytics knowledge and skills to the next level, The Learning Analytics Toolkit will be the place to got to.

What is unique about the Learning Analytics Toolkit?

=> It is up to you to decide how you want to use the ‘tools in the kit’!

The Learning Analytics Toolkit is not a training. It is not even a Learning Journey. The aspiration of the Learning Analytics Toolkit is to truly provide you with everything you need to upskill yourself in learning analytics.

This includes formal learning journeys to acquire relevant skills, and a custom GPT named Howart to address your questions and serve as a personal mentor. In the toolkit, you will have plenty of opportunities to practice, test your knowledge, and exchange insights with peers. 

The essence is that we share our collective expertise and offer you materials, a community, opportunities to practice and performance support. This approach enables you to both build relevant skills through instruction and practice, connect with experts and peers, and get performance support in cases where you need it.

For example, you could enroll to a formal learning journey to acquire or improve your technical skills like data validation or data modeling. Or you could get inspiration for your learning dashboard through the examples in the toolkit. Or ask the custom GPT Howart to help you translate your L&D strategy into meaningful and actionable KPI’s. Or check the community on how they solve a specific challenge.

What to expect?

The Learning Analytics Toolkit will be packed with learning experiences, content and community activities, including the following elements

Instruction and Knowledge Videos

You will have access to a ton of videos explaining everything you need to learn the knowledge you require in your current L&D role, or become a full on learning analytics expert: From data literacy fundamentals, to how to do learning analytics in Excel, the learning analytics process and much more. Each video will link to practice materials and knowledge checks to ensure the best possible learning transfer

Knowledge Checks

Knowledge checks help you to better understand what you know, and will test you on what you have learned. If you are following a formal learning journey, knowledge checks will need to be completed successfully to progress in the journey. But you can also take knowledge checks if you want to know your current knowledge level and see where you are in specific knowledge area’s.

Skill, Topic and Role Based Learning Journeys

Next to the large collection of learning experiences you can do at your leisure, you can also enroll into formal learning journeys. Perhaps you want to learn a specific skill, or prepare for a next L&D role (not all roles in L&D have to be equally skilled in analytics!) or you want to go deep on learning analytics in a specific L&D area like compliance or cost management? Learning journeys contain a similar blend of learning experiences, but are organized and arranged to provide additional scaffolding that guide you through the toolkit to reach a specific goal.

Case Studies & Examples inspired by real companies

Learning analytics is a complex topic, the analytics process is a complex process, data and analytics concepts are equally complex. So to cut through that complexity, the toolkit contains a lot of examples and case studies inspired by almost 20 years experience in L&D and analytics. These examples and case studies help you to understand the needs, challenges, mistakes and solutions of real analytics projects. The case studies cover all relevant area’s of learning analytics. From data strategies and management, to dashboard design and deployment, linking your learning and company strategy to learning analytics and building the right capabilities in L&D teams.

Practice Materials and Practice Datasets

We at SLT believe you do not learn new skills by watching videos. That is why we included a good amount of practice materials in the toolkit. This enables you to apply what you have learned in a safe environment. Practice materials are both on generic L&D as well as specific topics like compliance, skills and learning transfer. We also provide practice datasets created with the help of Chat GPT that enable you to do some real analytics yourself! Practice creating tables in excel, creating powerful data visuals that tell a story and even do a bit of real data modeling!

A Personal Dashboard with Relevant Insights

We at SLT believe in data driven insights to make decisions. That is why every toolkit member will receive access to their personal learning dashboard. This dashboard provides you with actionable insights based on your personal profile and your use of the dashboard. It helps you to understand where you are in your journeys, what adjacent topics, skills and roles could be of interest and how you are learning compared to others. Naturally the personal data in the dashboard will only be available to you!

Access to a custom GPT (Howart) for Advice and Performance Support

Do you know that AI is actually a type of data analytics? Current generative AI models are actually predictive analytics models: Chat GPT for example predicts the meaning of your input, and then predicts what out put you most likely would like to see and then produces that output. AI is also a great tool for learning. That is why the toolbox comes with privalidged access to Howart. A unique custom GPT that is trained on all of our knowledge, experiences, concepts, models and processes. Howart not only helps you to address challenges on analytics that you find in your everyday work, Howart can also recommend fit for purpose toolkit learning activities!

Example Dashboards

Designing and building powerful and actionable learning dashboard is a foundational skill for SLT. And even though we cannot share actual dashboards that we have created for our fortune 500 clients, you will get complimentary access to a lot of demo and practice dashboards so you can get inspiration, browse around, explore the data and get an understanding of what is possible. And yes, we will also share dashboards that never made it; poor and failed examples of dashboard design. Because if we make mistakes, we learn from it and we help you to not make the same mistakes!

Discussions and Q&A facilitated by SME’s

Learning alone and all by yourself is not only less efficient, it is also rather boring. And there are 100s of learning and development professionals like you who are eager to learn analytics. We also have our SME’s standby every week to engage with you and address challenges, share news & developments, answer questions and discuss the fascinating topic of learning analytics with the community!

A key element of the Toolkit will be the weekly open office hours where our SME’s are at your disposal to answer any and every question you might have! Even if you do not have questions, you should still join to see what questions other members have…

Downloadable Reference and Support Materials

Many of our projects require us to create reference materials; visual representations of processes, decision trees and cheat-sheets. The toolkit will contain all these materials that we have created over the years so that you can download them and use them in your everyday work, whenever you need them! You will get bonus points for sharing pictures of printed materials pinned to the wall of your workspace!

First access to News, Updates and Opinions

At SLT we have a strong opinion on L&D in general and learning data & analytics in particular. And we are not shy to share these opinion with the world through blogs or LinkedIn. Every year in November for example, we share daily best practices, new ideas and concepts as well as foundational knowledge on L&D and Analytics as part of our ‘learning analytics November’ initiative. As a member of the toolkit you will get early access to all of these materials. We will also share with you the latest news from the world of L&D, Data, Analytics and AI that we think is relevant for you.

Links to other stuff

The toolkit will be a treasure trove of learning experiences. But at SLT we do realize that even the most extensive toolkit will not be able to cover everything. That is why we will actively share as much good stuff as we can find out there. Interesting books to read, interesting people to follow, interesting learning opportunities. We will not just look at the world of L&D, but also to world of Data Science, Technology, AI, and other domains like Marketing and Finance.

Is the Learning Analytics Toolkit for me?

A preview of the interactive skill exploration screen (all rights reserved, final product could deviate from image)

We cannot emphasize enough that the Learning Analytics Toolkit is not just for professionals who have or aspire to have a role in Learning Analytics. Yes, the toolkit will cover in depth data science topics like data management, data engineering and data modeling. However, the toolkit is explicitly intended for all L&D professionals who want to become more data driven.

Some examples:

Learning Operations or Reporting Specialist

As a learning operations specialist you are the heath of the engine room for L&D. You ensure programs are deployed, assignments are made, rosters are managed and reports are shared with key stakeholders. And you work with learning data every day. Whether it is adding new learning assets and experiences to the catalogue and making sure they have all the right metadata, help employees find relevant learning opportunities, or run reports with completion information for program owners. To be successful in the role of learning operations specialist (or learning reporting specialist in case this is a separate role), it is imperative that you understand learning processes, learning technology and learning data! The toolkit helps you to understand what data really is, what L&D data is critical and how important it is to carefully manage L&D data. This enables you to become more efficient and effective in your role.

When running reports is a key part of your role, the Learning Analytics Toolkit becomes even more critical to ensure you have all the knowledge and experience in place to ensure you run the reports correct (for example by ensuring you include all relevant data) and efficient (by leverage smart data and analytics technology like Excel and Power BI).

Learning Facilitator (online and F2F)

An excellent learning facilitator already uses a lot of data and analytics without knowing. We refer to this as intuition and experience: the ability to intuitively respond to sensatory input (hearing, seeing, reading) in the best possible way due to extensive experiences. But this type of data analysis happens in our brains. Not (yet!) in computers and databases. But as a modern learning facilitator, especially of you are responsible for large numbers of programs, computer based analytics can be invaluable. You can use data to analyze (online) behavior of audiences to evaluate engagement and make improvements when necessary, you can even use prescriptive analytics to advise on how to best facilitate specific sessions, and in case of a F2F facilitator, you have the responsibility to ensure that relevant data is recorded related to learning transfer and evaluation.

Learning Analytics Expert or Manager

Especially as a new Learning Analytics Expert or Manager the Learning Analytics Toolkit is invaluable. It is a unique toolkit that brings vast knowledge and experience together on everything that a Learning Analytics Expert or Manager needs to be successful in its role. We extensively discuss the learning analytics process, we cover strategy as well as hands on skills like data cleaning and visualization. And all of this in the context of L&D using real examples from real fortune 500 companies! Sure, other data analysis and data science learning platform exist. And some will be very complimentary to the toolkit. For example, the toolkit does not cover programming languages as there are already more than enough offerings available in the market. But there is nothing that even remotely compares to this toolkit: we provide a unique combination of knowledge, experience and insights from the area’s of learning strategy and processes, learning technology, AI and Data Analytics. Not just because we love these topics (which we do!) but more importantly because we are convinced that this combination of understanding business and L&D with technology and data analytics is the sweet spot that allows a data analyst to add real value and be successful!

Now, you might already be knowledge and skilled in area’s of learning analytics. And well done to you. Still, we believe the Learning Analytics Toolkit will also provide value for any experience learning analytics professional. Some of our thinking incorporated in the toolkit is cutting edge and unique. So we might still be able to teach you a thing or 2! In addition you will find value in connecting with a global community of learning analytics experts and enthusiasts.

Chief Learning Officer/ Head of Learning

Any Chief Learning Officer or Head of Learning will find that the toolkit includes considerable tactical and strategic content and thinking. ‘How to align your learning analytics initiatives with your L&D and company strategy?’, ‘How to change my L&D organization to become more data driven?’, ‘What L&D KPI’s should I bring to my meetings with the CEO and how do we ensure they are accurate?’, ‘How can I use data and data driven insights to improve my decision making?’, ‘How can I use data and analytics to become a strategic partner for the business and be more pro-active?’, are some of the questions that the toolkit addresses. There is also plenty of room for forward thinking and innovation: how great would it be if you as the CLO or the Head of Learning can go to business leaders and CEO to explain that your predictive analytics is able to pinpoint where in the organization critical skill gaps will occur? And that you already initiated L&D investments and projects to support closing these gaps maybe even before they become reality?

Learning Business Partner

As a learning business partner you want to be a strategic partner for your business. You want to understand business challenges and how L&D can help overcome these challenges efficiently and effectively. To establish credibility you require many skills. But 2 key skills among these are firmly linked to data and analytics. First of all your ability to talk in the same language of the business. And as more and more businesses become digital and data driven, more and more business language evolves around data. The second key skill to establish credibility is your ability to backup your results, achievements, observations and opinions with data driven insights.

The toolkit is your unique chance to not only learn to better understand the language of data and analytics, so you can talk to the business in equal terms. But also to start thinking and working on data driven insights that are critical for your business and will be a tremendous help getting you message across!

Learning & Performance Consultant

The classical promise of learning analytics is to demonstrate the impact of learning on business performance. Not an easy thing to do and much of what we write and share is linked to this ‘quest‘. Any transformation of L&D from ‘order taker’ to strategic partner and performance consultant requires solid data and analytics. As a strategic business performance consultant, you need to be able to define performance, asses current performance levels, estimate the influence of L&D on performance and eventually establish the correlation between performance improvement and the deployed L&D programs. All of that requires a solid understanding of data, and the ability to use data to establish facts (descriptive analytics), identify root causes (diagnostic analytics), select the best possible solution (predictive and prescriptive analytics) and establish correlation (descriptive analytics). Oh, and by the way, data analysis is also a great way to keep focus on what is really important. So you can avoid wasting time and money on projects and initiatives that do not move the bottom line!

Fortunately for you, the learning analytics toolkit will cover all of these topics. And much more!

Learning Experience Designer/Curator

At SLT we have had the pleasure and privilege to work with some of the world’s leading experts in evidence based learning experience design. We also helped companies at the forefront of learning curation to use data to help understand how curated learning experience were received and utilized and how to continuous improve curation. It makes perfect sense for the world of learning experience designers and curators to become more data driven, as more experiences are digital or partly digital. Data and analytics provide excellent opportunities to understand what is going on, and check how well you are underway to reach your target. More advanced analytics like predictive and prescriptive analytics can even help you to select the most suitable design option.

One of the special topics in the toolkit is what we refer to as ‘Data Driven L&D Design‘. This concepts is based on the notion that much of our L&D data is actually created by ourselves. By making the right design decisions, you improve and enhance the data that is captured while participants go through the (digital) learning experience. And this improved and enhanced data can then be used to create even more insightful and powerful analytics!

Learning Technology Expert or Manager

Let me ask you a question. When selecting a new learning tool, platform or 3rd party library, how much attention do you spend on data and analytics? How many requirements state that the tool must enable easy, reliable and complete data extraction? How many requirements exist on the tool’s analytics capabilities? And do you have any requirements on data governance and management? Much of the data we require in learning analytics comes from L&D tools and platforms. Yet very little thought is given to this. As a modern LT expert or manager, you will need to understand learning analytics in order to build learning ecosystems that not just serve the employees as best as possible, but also maximizes the value generated from L&D data. And ideally L&D data integrated with business data. Think not just of the value data has for analytics, but also the value it can have for Artificial Intelligence.

The Learning Analytics Toolkit handles extensively how to best manage data from a technology and tool perspective. It brings vital and extensive illustrations, concepts and examples coming from the world’s most used learning systems like Cornerstone onDemand, Edcast and Moodle. There is also a special topic on dashboarding. Still a backbone for analytics: How to select the best dashboarding technology and tools is an example.

Learning Program or Skills/Capability Owner

How do you know if your program is a success? How do you know if the skills you own are actually being developed in the organization? And by the right people? As owner of learning programs, or owner of skills, you can benefit a lot by using data and analytics to answer questions like these. But what is needed in order to do so? And no doubt you want to be able to correctly interpret data and be able to use data driven storytelling to explain keys stakeholder why your program is successful?

Using data to help telling stories is an essential element of the toolkit and an essential skill for any professional.

Learning Compliance/H&S Officer

Topics like compliance, H&S and GxP (Good Practices) are essential L&D activities for many organizations, especially in more regulated environments like manufacturing, finance and healthcare. They are also excellent area’s to start your learning analytics journey (I know, because I started my learning analytics journey in legal compliance!): there is a clear need for insights, and the data is often in reasonable good shape. But how do you select the right metrics and KPI’s? How do you enable reporting at scale? How do you manage the data to maintain a single source of truth? And are there any more advanced analytics possibilities that can help driving compliance learning?

The toolkit not only provides answers to these questions. It also contains plenty of examples, case studies and best practices to help you not only understand what it takes to do compliance learning analytics well, but also to start creating your own solutions!

Learning Content Developer

As for learning experience designers, data driven content design and development is becoming more and more important for any content developer. Data helps you to understand how well content works (and where there is room for improvement) and can even be used to create suggestions on content. Much like generative AI can help you creating content better and faster. That is no coincidence, as generative AI is a form of analytics!

New to corporate L&D?

Are you new to corporate L&D? Then why not create the best possible start for your L&D career by developing the most sought skills in L&D as early in your career as possible? That way you can be that data driven L&D professional that so many of us inspire to become. You can distinguish yourself by taking data driven approach to challenge where others still lack data driven insights. And whatever the role you have in L&D (see above), even if you have no previous experience in analytics, the Learning Analytics Toolkit will enable you to start at the very beginning and work your way through the knowledge and skills that will not just accelerate your career in L&D, but also help you in any possible professional career outside L&D!

If you have any questions on training and upskilling in ‘Learning Analytics’ please reach out to us via toolkit@sltconsulting.nl