The corporate training world often questions and evaluates the concept of incorporating informal learning. The question always arises whether informal learning
can be added to the formal learning and if so, how both can be combined together.
Informal learning is the unofficial, unscheduled, and unplanned way to learn and gain knowledge, whereas formal learning is delivered in a systematic, intentional way with a reporting and evaluation process. While formal learning will continue to be fundamental to professional development, organizations can embrace informal learning practices to enhance their learning and training programs.
Let’s look at below tips through, which you can incorporate informal learning in to your formal learning and development programs:
Employees are more relaxed and eager in an informal learning setting and they readily commit to learning a new skill without worrying about exams or evaluations. However, the accuracy of learning material as well as the learners’ understanding cannot be assessed in an informal learning setting. Also, organizations can deliver single information or knowledge resource to a large number of employees at the same time through formal learning methods, tools; informal learning for large groups is not constructive. Formal learning can also be monitored and reported and brings credibility to the organization. Hence, it is not impossible to replace formal learning with informal learning, however, it can surely add more value and engagement to formal learning practices. Organizations need to thoroughly understand their learning objectives, challenges, target audience in order to create a balanced learning environment for their employees.