Three main factors have recently shaken the training market. On one side, information and communication technologies (ICT) facilitate new learning formats and more flexible ways of disseminating knowledge. On the other side, the demand to access knowledge -the factor that allows access to resources that society values- has generated a competitive market where public and private actors compete to sell their training offer. And finally, the accelerated process of technological change impacts on many fronts, and generates changes at all levels: not all emerging technologies will alter the business or social landscape, but some have the potential to modify the status quo by altering the way of living and work, which has a clear translation in the demands that productive systems assume from educational systems.
Therefore, it is necessary to adapt permanently the educational offer of Educational Institutions in form and content to the current and future demands of the labor market.
Which is the procedure?
Launching new products into the market is a not-standarized procedure, so it may vary depending on the circumstances that frame the environment of the educational institution and the training market you want to intervene. Generically, these are the phases:
- Analysis of tendencies and training needs: it is appropriate to analyze the current state and future trends of the field of knowledge regarding the new formative product, to identify the evolution of the economic sectors where it is expected that the identified trends will impact the most and to set current and future training needs of professionals in the corresponding economic sectors
- Analysis of the current training offer: the measure in which the current training offer responds or not to the training needs detected within the field of knowledge on which one wishes to influence
- Identification of opportunities for new training proposals: the previous phase allows us to identify opportunities to create new training products that respond to unsatisfied market demands. These opportunities can lead to new content, new formats, to the grouping of dispersed content or to the establishment of new training itineraries
- Contrast and validation with experts: this phase attempts to contrast the analysis carried out, the opportunities detected and the proposals of new training products with experts from higher education institutions, the productive sector and other related professionals to validate to what extent the content and format of the new training product effectively respond to market demands
How to design the new training product?
This is the previous step to the authorization of the new educational product by the corresponding education institution Office. Here is how the product will be.
- Description: It would be necessary to establish in a synthetic way in a technical sheet:
- Name of the training product
- Target audience to whom we want to address
- Skills to acquire
- Thematic blocks and training contents: knowledge and skills that must be acquired, face-to-face system, professional practices, etc.
- Teaching and learning method
- Management and teaching staff
- Partners / collaborating entities in terms of funding
- Justification: It must be made clear why the new training product is an opportunity and the value it will rise
- Analysis of the competition and positioning of the new training product: main characteristics of competing courses and comparative analysis of the positioning of the new course
- International reference courses: to carry out an analysis on the international reference courses similar to the new product
- Trends in the economic sectors related to the new course in terms of activity, economic weight and employment trends. The goal is to identify opportunities offered by the productive sector and the qualification and training needs for the professionals working there
- Sizing of the potential market of the new formative product with quantitative data related to future student’s profiles
- Analysis and description of the professional profile: establishment of the professional skills, tasks to be developed and fields of expertise of the new training product according to business needs
Finally, to communicate
Launching a new product to the market is also a communication challenge. A communications plan is required for the success of the sale. On the part of the public operators, perhaps the need for communication is not perceived as real for the new training products. However, for private operators in the training market, it is a must. It is necessary to differentiate the product, monitoring the advantages of the new offer to make it attractive.
As a company that has its professional origins in the management of higher education, U·TRANS has extensive experience in supporting supply operators in the design and communication of new training products, especially for universities and higher education centers.