On-The-Job Learning and Development: The 70-20-10 Model

The 70-20-10 model is a recognised approach to HOW WE LEARN AT WORK, and it is used in many organisations all over the world. Although it is almost 40 years old, the model is still APPLICABLE today.

The model reflects the increasing awareness that one can learn by “doing” and not just by “knowing”. Furthermore the model reinforces a common-sense approach that learning most of the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed to perform jobs can be done through actual experience and working alongside others – and not in the classroom.

  • 70% Learning and development comes from experience (on-the-job)

  • 20% Learning and development through others (social learning – mentoring, feedback and relationships with colleagues)

  • 10% Learning and development through structured training (training sessions, formal learning)

The 70:20:10 model shows that learning is more than just traditional classes. Several platforms are needed to make training work. It is to be noted that this model is not about the exact percentages but about the balance. In real life, the breakdown may be more like 40% formal, 20% social, and 40% experiential. Thanks to modern technology, the 70:20:10 framework can flexible.

THE 70-20-10 MODEL:


  1. Virtual Reality - Virtual reality is an ideal solution for corporate training. With VR, individuals can practice their skills until they are confident in them, and then start the job with confidence. Students face more realistic scenario

  2. Augmented Reality - Augmented reality can drive employee engagement just as much as virtual reality but it is much more affordable. For example learners can scan certain areas of an engine with their mobile devices to see overlaid content, such as video, images, and text explanations on how to conduct simple maintenance procedures.

  3. Game-based learning - Games are a good tool for learning. They present a person with a challenge and make them develop their skills.

  4. Interactive video - This approach provides open situations for the learner to make decisions and reflect on the process. The interaction comes from places in the video where there is a choice to be made. The learner’s prior knowledge and decisions result in meaningful consequences.

  5. Social media - People use social media not only for personal communication, but also for professional and pedagogical purposes. For example, with Facebook, you can, create discussion groups for sharing information about a project, carry out surveys to get feedback and suggestions on training courses;, create closed or secret groups and upload course material and assignments.

  6. eLearning - eLearning technology is making traditional corporate learning a thing of the past. Compared to instructor-led training, online learning is more beneficial - it saves your company money, allows you to personalize the learning process, and boosts employee morale. Access to up-to-date information is assured.

  7. Blended learning - Blended learning is a formal educational program that combines traditional teaching methods with digital learning.

  8. Webinars - Web video conferencing is a powerful way to promote blended social learning. Many webinar platforms support live video, text chat interactive whiteboards, note-taking, real-time voting/surveys/quizzes, and PowerPoint slides. Sessions can be recorded.

  9. Mobile learning - training doesn’t have to stop after working hours. Employees value the ability to learn anytime and anywhere.

In conclusion, the model helps us to understand that employees are always learning. Regardless of where they are picking up skills and in what percentage, the model explains that it is important to get a mixture of learning opportunities because employees can learn different things from different sources.

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