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  • Writer's pictureRob Wright

Delivering the Upskilling Path Through Practice

Do you recognize this curve?

Do you know recognize this graph related to immersive learning?

Over the last few years, Bright has delivered millions of simulation-based experiences to learners around the globe. And in the process we've gathered a unique data set that tells a powerful story of upskilling.

In a typical corporate learning setting, most organizations have limited resources to dedicate to practice and coaching. Learners may get a quick walkthrough in a software training environment, or a few peer-to-peer role plays. But the exposure is typically brief, and isn't all that lifelike.


In contrast, Bright enables scalable, automated practice in conversations, soft skills, SOP adherence, legal compliance, software tools, and more. The 'mystery' graph above shows the typical path to upskilling as measured by proficiency metrics generated by Bright during simulation and coaching sessions. There's a more complete version below.



We find that the amount of practice needed to reach proficiency is 1) much more than what traditional corporate training has been providing, but 2) not as much as you may think it is.


Each point on the graph above is a simulation session in a particular skillset. Unsurprisingly, the more someone practices with targeted feedback and coaching, the more proficient they become - the proficiency measure goes up. To make it 'real' for your organization, this graph may represent sales closure, first call resolution, customer satisfaction, quality scores, or system accuracy. There also could be an inverted version of this graph where proficiency is defined by metrics going down, such as average call handle time or error rates. Either way, the trend of improvement is the same - skill gain improves with practice until it reaches some natural steady state.


One of the most interesting elements of this graph is a trend we call the 'Illusion of Mastery.' After a little practice, many new hires start to pick up on the skill - their ratings start to improve. And there's a temptation to stop there. But as we follow the data, we've found that many learners can 'get worse before they get better.' The reason seems to be that many learners are following the practice in a rote manner (the old habit of clicking through an eLearning as fast as you can dies hard...!). But if you throw a curve-ball, or change the simulation slightly, we see their performance start to deteriorate. This forces the learner to think and apply the skills they've been learning, which is a good thing both for their confidence + your company performance. The takeaway? Organizations that want to reduce onboarding time, accelerate ramp time to proficiency, or improve overall business performance need to make space for dramatically more practice than they do today, and they need to measure the skill gain they're trying to build. We have an awesome real-time dashboard in Bright that maps this view for every learner. Regardless of how your organization delivers it, get started on delivering the Upskilling Path powered by practice today!

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