Performance Support provides the right amount of support, as close to the moment of need as possible.
Finding the right information, at the right level of detail, at the right time, can lead to better decision-making and higher productivity. It focuses on what people need to do versus what they need to know.
Winning companies will be the ones who create an environment or ecosystem that enables employees to access the right content, experts, and peers instantly at the moment of need. This is the goal of the Performance Support discipline.
An Electronic Performance Support System (EPSS) is a role-contextual platform which enables two-click-10-second access to just what is needed, in the form needed, at the very moment of need, to efficiently and effectively accomplish the task (regardless if it is forgotten, never learned, or outdated). (It’s Performance that Matters)
EPSS is both a knowledgebase and social environment which enables employees to access the right content, experts, and peers instantly at the moment of need. An EPSS platform needs to be the central resource for a formal skill-specific training intervention.
Example One: Salespeople must be trained to make a good product presentation before they can win a sale. But once in the field, knowledge about changing product specifications or customer preferences can be accessed in real time more efficiently than it can be taught in a course.
Example Two: Call center representatives need initial systems training as well as training in customer relationship skills, but on the job, they rely on knowledgebases and guided scripts to respond to customer inquiries.
Example Three: Training can help new managers develop coaching skills, but in the field, they need to access online expertise when facing unique supervisory situations.
Performance Support Pyramid
The Performance Support Pyramid (by Con Gottfredson and Bob Mosher) is read from top to bottom. The methodology starts in context of an employee role needing to access a Process. The user will then want to quickly get from the process right to the Steps (broken down into quick steps and detailed steps) so the user only needs to drill to the level of support they need to get the job done. If necessary, the user can then drill deeper for any additional information (usually conceptual) they need to know to perform the process, and any resources associated with the process.
By using this pyramid, we can provide users with only the information they need to get the job done as quickly as possible (two-click-10-second access) without being distracted by a deeper level of supporting knowledge and other resources they may or may not need. Most organizations today have technology and tools designed for the bottom three levels. We can help design a performance support solution that adds the top three levels to create a holistic and effortless performance and learning experience.
Performance Support solutions come in three types (the closer to the workflow the better!):
Separate from Work. Requires the user to stop their work to use the tool (e.g., reference guides, manuals).
Enabling Work. A little closer to the work at hand but not integrated into the workflow (e.g., online help systems, knowledge management systems).
Integrated with Work. Completely embedded in the workflow, and practically impossible to differentiate the work from the support (e.g., working out loud, wizards which lead you through a software installation, access to experts, peer collaboration).
The content is written for the workplace and at the right level of detail to meet the needs of the specific role. It provides the human element (like having your own personal coach) and resolves the “context” problem because it ensures performance and learning are supported within the actual flow of work.
Below are the some of the key elements of the platform:
- Role-Specific (It is contextual and custom-tailored to a single employee role)
- Holistic (It includes all the role’s critical performance and learning needs)
- Social Collaboration (peer and expert support within context of each topic page)
- Speed of Access (2-3 clicks, 10 seconds to all information)
- Speed of Updating/Curating (in-the-browser HTML editing)
- Scalable (Ability to seamlessly add and remove domains, topics, and content)
- Separate yet Integrated Formal Training (The platform supports the new-hire training programs and continuous learning interventions but is separate, stands on its own, and is designed for the workplace context. This integration ensures knowledge is centralized in the platform and formal training interventions are used for their intended purpose.)
Sustained Performance. Enables high-level job performance because critical knowledge is contextual and available at their fingertips.
Agile and Continuous Learning. Enables rapid response to change, continuous improvement, and adaptability to speed of business because it allows quick organization, updating, and curation of latest knowledge. This enables reduced time to effective performance, which give us the advantage of learning faster than our competitors.
On-Demand. Content and resources are strategically organized, quickly updated, and available in the right format within 2-clicks or 10-seconds.
Decouples Content from Skill-Building. This ensures content is quickly accessible and formal training activities are focused on specific performance gaps.
Measurable. We can now demonstrate employee performance improvement via workplace performance data. Learning can only be measured by performance (doing) metrics.
Performance Support eBook
Ten Seconds: Performance Support in Two Clicks
How To Get Started With Performance Support
eLearning Learning – Performance Support
Modern Learning Experiences tSpace Wiki
Performance Support tSpace Community
Performance Support Community (by invitation-only community)
Content Dumping: how to poison your learning strategy
Understanding Organizational Knowledge-web Technologies
What is a learning portal?