Upskilling is the flavor of the season. With the world under quarantine, ‘now’ is being touted as the best time to learn and upgrade oneself. Even before the current situation, organizations and professionals have always believed that to stay relevant and updated with the latest industry know-hows, one must keep learning.
For professionals, it isn’t easy to turn up in classrooms and dedicate day-after-day to attend training sessions. They prefer flexible learning opportunities that are industry-relevant, interactive, and contextual.
These requirements have helped fuel the e-learning market. Allen Interactions features as a prominent name among e-learning service providers. Leveraging nearly three decades of extensive experience, Allen Interactions and The Allen Academy partner with organizations on comprehensive learning and talent ecosystem initiatives that include learning strategy, custom development, technology, automation, change management, talent staffing, and instructional design.
Allen Interactions’ passion has always been to deliver Meaningful, Memorable, and Motivational solutions that are laser-focused on performance improvement. The company takes on challenges for overcoming performance barriers, resistance to change, onboarding, workforce realignment, technology integration, new product introductions and support, and many others.
In November 2019, Allen Interactions acquired Problem Solutions, which builds digital engineering solutions for major organizations in both private and public sectors. This acquisition furthers Allen Interactions’ commitment to providing its clients the means to significantly improve human performance efficiency at measurable levels that prove meaningful to the organization’s success.
An Adept Leader
Dr. Michael W. Allen, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Allen Interactions, has been a pioneer in the e-learning industry since 1971. He has decades of professional, academic, and corporate experience in teaching, developing and marketing interactive learning, and creating performance support systems.
Dr. Allen has led teams of doctorate-level specialists in learning research, instructional design, computer-assisted learning, and human engineering. He defined unique principles and methods for designing and developing high impact interactive e-learning experiences that invoke critical cognitive activity and practice.
Allen Interactions uses these approaches for iterative and collaborative development. Allen’s methodologies are also taught in The Allen Academy where learning professionals can become certified in the techniques.
Before establishing Allen Interactions, Dr. Allen served as the director of advanced educational systems research and development of Control Data Corporation’s famous PLATO system for computer-based education system used around the world.
He was the founder and former chairman of Authorware, Inc. and the primary architect of Authorware Professional, a ground-breaking authoring tool which was based on Dr. Allen’s extensive research on creativity and creative problem-solving. Authorware, Inc. merged with Macromind/Paracomp to become Macromedia, which was later acquired by Adobe.
Dr. Allen is a prolific writer with eight published books on designing effective e-learning solutions, a sought-after conference speaker, and a recognized industry leader in the learning and training industry.
Practice it to Perfect it
Dr. Allen created the agile Successive Approximation Model (SAM) process in the 1970s as an alternative to ADDIE. The iterative process has proven outstanding for the design and production of high-quality learning experiences.
Allen Interactions has been practicing and teaching the SAM process to its clients since 1993, publicly through ATD (American Society of Training & Development) for many years and most recently as part of the new Allen Academy for Learning Professionals.
Allens’ CCAF Design Model consists of four components of instructional interactivity which include: Context, Challenge, Activity, and Feedback. This model is rooted in driving performance change for all custom learning deigns to be authentic representations of real-world settings, choices, skill applications, and consequences that employees face in their jobs. Dr. Allen also deeply believes in the value of practice, pointing out that many training programs provide far too little practice and that certain practice paradigms are far more effective than others.
Allen Interactions studios have spent decades creating standards, methods, and paradigms for evolving digital learning and human performance measurements.
Through design thinking tools, agile development, and unique collaboration, Allen Interactions focuses on performance first, resolving problems from fuzzy to clear, leading to improved performance and the achievement of specific business outcomes.
Turning Challenges into Success Stories
Although e-learning is a well-established alternative to traditional learning, it is still far from being well-understood. Myths and misunderstanding abound. For e-learning service providers, one of the major challenges continues to be helping clients understand the differences in outcomes that can be achieved with different types of e-learning.
Allen Interactions enjoys a great reputation for quality, attracting clients who are often very well-informed and forward-thinking. It allows the company to raise the bar and innovate for impressive outcomes. However, at times, even knowledgeable clients are handicapped by members of their leadership teams who continue to think of training as a cost rather than the means to secure competitive advantages.
Throughout the three decades of operations, the CCAF and SAM design and development approaches have helped Allen Interactions secure its enduring position at the top of the industry. The mission-driven company has had the honor of educating thousands of professionals on its e-learning design and development principles for building true instructional interactivity for performance-changing learning.
A Thriving Industry
As an industry veteran, Dr. Allen opines that there’s now a keen awareness that to become and remain competitive, organizations need to use their employee’s time wisely, develop skills needed for efficient performance, and give employees growth opportunities that will keep them from wandering away.
“I think with the sudden necessity of remote work and the discovery that this is quite manageable for many organizations, e-learning is moving from an interesting option to a vital strategy. I hope with increased attention, the demand for higher-quality e-learning will rise strongly over the widespread acceptance of some slides and questions as we see so much of today,” Dr. Allen expresses.
With the rise of the industry, many novice players are trying to make their mark. To the young entrepreneurs, Dr. Allen says, “We welcome and encourage all who intend to help others realize their full potential. Establish a mission, a set of values, and a uniqueness that no one else has and stick to them. Persistence is the essence of success.”
Venturing towards Zeniths of Success
The changing dynamics of the industry due to remote workforces, the desire to build unique skill sets, the redefinition of educational and training institutions, and other movements are creating fantastic opportunities for companies like Allen Interactions.
The company’s unique ability to incorporate smart software, advanced systems engineering, and creative, evidence-based, learning experiences—that have both impact and enthusiastic learner acceptance—means it will be able to continue to serve major progressive organizations.“We continue to evolve as a company and are so excited to share more of our discoveries and advances in performance technology in the future! Our future looks very bright for us. And fun, too!” concludes Dr. Allen.