As we slowly come closer to the end of 2019, it’s that time of the year again to look at what ‘was’ and what ‘will be’ in the year to come. Every year brings with it a flurry of new trends, mostly driven by emerging technologies and innovations, which transform employee training just a little bit every time.

With the global eLearning market on a growth trajectory and poised to touch $15.72 billion by the year 2021, it is up to organizations and L&D leaders to get ahead of the curve and start planning and strategizing to leverage the newer learning and learning technology trends for the coming year/s.

Over the next few weeks, we will take a detailed and comprehensive look at what L&D leaders must embrace and what they need to let go of in 2020 and beyond- be it in terms of eLearning, learning technology, employee engagement, Artificial Intelligence and more.

Today, we explore Big Data, Learning Analytics & Reporting.

Big Data, Learning Analytics & Reporting

With almost 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created every day, big data has certainly affected our personal and professional lives. However, data within itself doesn’t amount to much unless it can be measured and analyzed, which is why Analytics has now become an absolute must-have for every business looking to achieve operational efficiently and sustainable growth and success.

Prompted by the overwhelming amount of data organizations now possess, it is only natural for them to start analyzing it to evolve in today’s fast changing digital landscape. And, one of the industries where analytics is quickly making a huge difference is the learning industry.

In eLearning, Big Data stands for all the data that is collected from learners’ behavior, activities, performance, completions etc. However, the sheer amount of raw data (big!) available is just beyond traditional databases. Enter Learning Analytics, which helps L&D professionals with data that is more structured and presented in more suitable formats.

Given how L&D exist to create effective learning programs to develop their employees’ talent and skills to impact organizational output and, in turn, business growth, the success of an organisation is the ultimate priority for almost all business leaders, and learning analytics holds a key position in the organization’s operational cycle.

No surprises then why learning analytics has become a major driver of improving learner experiences, and hence L&D outcomes. Today, 80% of organizations and 63% of SMBs are using or are set to use learning analytics as per a research study by IDG. Enterprises, governments, educational institutions and SMBs alike, which have had tons of data about the learning habits of their employees, are finally starting to join the dots between data and insights using learning analytics.

Learning Analytics in 2020 & Beyond

The learning analytics market is rapidly growing, with the growing need for data-driven decision making. According to a report by Research and Markets, the global learning analytics market is set to grow to $7.1 billion by the year 2023.

L&D professionals will most definitely continue to leverage learning analytics tools to track learner activities, like daily log-ins, curriculum completions, and performances and so on. Personalized learning continues to be a buzz work in the market, which is again largely fueled by insights gained from learning analytics.

As data and personalization go hand in hand, more so in terms of learning where all analytics is focused towards improvement, learning analytics is a great way to determine the requirement and provide customized learning experiences to each learner to improve their learning engagement and also the retention rate. As each learner is different in the way s/he learns, learning analytics can enable L&D professionals to tailor their approach towards each learner’s academic aptitude.

An LMS with an inbuilt reporting and analytics feature can track user progress status for all the learners in the organization. This can be used to generate progress reports for individuals or groups and can be linked to how active the learner is too. Learner activeness is generally a factor of Curriculum Completions, CPD Points and Gamification Points.

L&D professionals are increasingly finding more value in leveraging learning analytics to access learner behaviors to improve the training quality and delivery methods. In a marketplace flooded with evolving technology, there is no denying that the learning industry will continue leveraging analytics on a larger scale to understand today’s learner behaviors and accordingly evolve to cater to the learners’ unique knowledge and skill-based needs.

Moreover, with every department in today’s organizations facing tremendous pressure to show value, L&D stands to benefit more from learning analytics, as they can finally quantify the learners’ needs based on data. According to IBM, 62% of employers report that the use of information and analytics is creating a competitive advantage for them. Furthermore, learning analytics provides valuable information on how employee training impacts ROI.

L&D departments can back their budget requirements on analytics, thus adding more credibility to their work, which let’s face it, is often lacking hard numbers.


With more and more organizations leveraging learning analytics to manage their L&D efforts expertly, there is a stronger push towards improving processes and learners’ experience now more than ever, which is expected to help develop a certain culture of data-driven decision taking throughout the organization.

LMSes are a great way to analyze learner data, and in today’s fast-paced and dynamic business environment, a learning analytics feature such as UpsideLMS’ innovative Reporting & Analytics dashboard is capable of relaying insightful information that helps improve decision making and produces better results.

Next up in the series, we will explore the emergence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology in learning and how L&D can leverage it to achieve greater learning impact.