• Recruitment

Mobile learning—a new training ground in the palm of your hand

At the end of 2017, the mobile learning market reached an estimated value of 12.2 billion dollars, with an annual growth rate over 50%. As this learning method grows, it seems poised to revolutionize the world of corporate training. At BNP Paribas, the International Retail Banking (IRB) branch has opted to use these handheld formats to train its employees around the globe. Learn more below.

7.7 billion mobile subscription plans worldwide at the end of 2017 

*according to the International Telecommunication Union. 

The mobile learning boom  

First appearing a decade ago, mobile learning (or m-learning) has become increasingly popular with businesses in recent years. According to a Forrester study conducted for Adobe, 47% of corporate training programs in the United States and Canada went digital in 2017, and mobile formats account for a growing share of these programs. So much so that 62% of North American companies now see mobile as a powerful training tool. For 55% of respondents, the trend is driven by millennial employees, who want to access content no matter where they are. This need is becoming even more urgent since people in this age range check their mobile phones an average of 150 times a day.

M-learning offers training programs for any device type—smartphone, tablet, portable gaming console, etc.—simply by downloading a dedicated app. The modules themselves take on various forms such as interactive games and quizzes, infographics, audio podcasts, videos, etc. 

Offering fun and flexible training at your fingertips, m-learning boosts learner engagement over time and has proved more effective than other forms of distance learning. According to the e-learning industry site, 70% of m-learning users say they feel more motivated to learn when using a mobile device rather than a computer. They also complete training programs 1.5 times faster than when using a computer.  

40 min

The additional study time enjoyed when using a mobile device rather on a computer.  


The number of times per day, on average, that millennials check their smartphone. 

2.73 Mds

The number of people who used a mobile device to go online in 2017. Projections estimate this number will rise to 3.44 billion people by 2020.


The amount of smartphone users who expect to get exact answers to  their immediate needs.

Affordable and user-friendly, m-learning is perfectly suited to meet the specific training needs of companies. Push notifications give employees immediate access to information from anywhere, empowering them to acquire new knowledge in minutes. Another advantage of m-learning? The possibility to tailor modules to user profiles or company goals (onboarding new employees, job training, product training, etc.). 

International retail banking goes mobile

At BNP Paribas, the International Retail Banking (IRB) activity chose m-learning to train its 42,000 employees worldwide. This training is delivered by the entity’s Learning & Development (L&D) team, through its Teach on Mars mobile learning platform. Its purpose is to offer a fun, varied and contextualized learning experience to encourage employee engagement.

The m-learning modules developed by the L&D team include:

  1. Video capsules in ATAWAD format (Any Time, Anywhere, Any Device). After they are downloaded, these videos can be viewed at any time, even offline. A pilot project is underway in several countries where the Group operates in Africa, where mobile uses have become even more ingrained than in Europe. 
  2. Games dedicated to lean management. Seven training sequences are already available. Videos and gamification keep users interested through the entire course. Quizzes and role-playing games then help to ensure users have acquired the necessary skills.
  3. Training in ice breaking techniques to learn how to get people talking in meetings.

And this is just the beginning…

In light of employees’ enthusiastic response to these initiatives, the L&D team with BNP Paribas’ international retail banking branch is working to expand its mobile learning offer. On the agenda—a welcome module for new employees and a module for managers.  

This is the first step before the team launches adaptative learning solutions , a new type of personalized training that can adapt to the specific needs of each learner by using algorithms, big data and cognitive science. The goal is to provide better support to employees as working methods continue to change. 

Crédits photos: header © mooshny // © silverkblack

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