In her review of the Fuse learning platform, Laura found a solution that “ignites performance” by facilitating learning “at the moment of need”. It encourages informal collaboration between employees and possesses a natural language AI-powered search engine with impressive multilingual functionality.
This is a platform designed to increase active learning engagement in a workforce, and through that engagement – deliver increased performance.
Active engagement drives higher performance
Fuse’s primary vision is that performance should be the end goal of workplace learning, and that performance drives productivity and helps people in specific roles. They believe that learning technology only really works if people use it, so have designed a platform that makes it easy to capture, curate, and share the knowledge of subject matter experts within a business.
It then enables employees to access it when, where, and how they work.
Fuse empowers learning at the moment of need, and as a vendor they understand that the technology required can be different for learning in the moment of need versus learning to develop your career. For example, they believe that the learning platform functionality required for career development (to enable someone to move from being an individual contributor to a manager) differs from the AI needed to power how to do your current job better.
The latter tends to have the biggest impact on driving performance within an organisation. It’s clear to me that Fuse is focused on empowering learning in the moment of need and driving that performance, enabling people to do their jobs better, faster and more efficiently.
However, it’s also a platform that can be set up with all the usual learning pathways to facilitate career development that you would expect. Albeit slightly less exciting than some of their particular USPs, Fuse also boasts other in-built functionality to facilitate increased employee performance, including scheduling of one-to-ones, creation of goals, and observation checklists.
These are worth mentioning as they are not necessarily core features of every LMS. Key to reporting on your organisational KPIs are the comprehensive analytics powered by Good Data, with an impressive array of data points and a self-serve report builder to cater for any out-of-the-box reporting requirements.
Strong focus on informal and collaborative learning that helps drive performance
Fuse was a market disruptor 10 years ago, being very much focused on the 70/20 components of the 70/20/10 model and informal and collaborative learning. This clear and distinctive move away from traditional SCORM courses was at the time quite radical in some ways – hence the “disruptor” tag.
One of the things that Fuse pride themselves on is that they consider their vision and philosophy to be one that differentiates them from their competitors. They believe that learning should drive performance in the business and this philosophy impacts their product roadmap and the services that they provide.
This philosophy helps drive the high engagement that is needed to ensure that performance increases, and gives them a much more holistic vision for their product development roadmap. Fuse’s recognition that social learning and peer to peer is the most mature learning intervention makes their platform a great choice for organisations that are digitally mature enough to do this already.
It also offers a future-proof option for those want to transition and move to that as part of their ongoing strategy.
Their sweet spot for a typical client tends to be organisations with 5,000 employees and up, and typically with geographically-dispersed workforces who need scalable, flexible, and innovative learning solutions where their multi-lingual functionality (more on that later) is a real draw.
They have a strong showing in the car manufacturing, retail, technology, and hospitality sectors with clients such as Lotus, Mazda, Jaguar Land Rover, Dropbox, Panasonic, IHG, and Avon among many others. Avon, their biggest client so far in terms of active users, has over 1 million users accessing the platform in over 50 languages.
Enabling businesses to create bite-size content and reduce skill gaps
Fuse’s approach to content is very much founded on the philosophy of micro-learning, bite-size learning, and informal learning, rather than your traditional SCORM and elearning content. Having said that, they recognise that more formal and compliance learning is fundamental to many organisations, so the platform is obviously SCORM compatible and facilitates the transferring of SCORM content into it.
However, in terms of authoring capability, it’s much more focused on enabling or facilitating the decentralised creation of user-generated short form content and micro bite-size learning content with in-built surveys, quizzing tools and video creation and editing tools.
Skills is the big topic that everyone in the learning sector is talking about at the moment, so it’s no surprise that Fuse want to draw attention to the great skills functionality that they can offer. Information from existing skills platforms like SkyHive, Gloat, and Fuel50 that might already be in situ – particularly for large corporates – can be used to feed the relevant skill gaps into their engine and provide recommended learning to users based on those particular skill gaps.
To help deliver this content to close skill gaps, they partner with a wide variety of content providers, like LinkedIn Learning, Udemy, and iAM Learning, and they integrate with many others. They also boast their own 25-30 strong in-house content team, including videographers, graphic designers, animators, and learning designers etc.
Although content only represents some 10% of their annual revenue, with their platform their main product, having a content team is just one example of how they help clients drive that performance through learning because they are on hand to help co-design content with clients to help them transition to that bite-size learning world.
Natural language, AI-powered search
Fuse provides a “Google like” search experience that uses a natural language search (it actually uses Google AI to power it), which allows you to search just as you would if you were searching using Google. It trawls through paragraphs within PDF training manuals and all the content in the platform to pull out the snippets or extracts that are relevant to your search, which I thought was really impressive and something that is quite unusual for learning platforms.
They also offer Fuse Flow, a browser extension which can be installed as a button on your browser. Now, let’s say you’re an employee in an organisation and you’re in a particular piece of software – say Salesforce – and you need to search on how to do something in the software.
You could open Fuse Flow and because it recognises the software you’re in, it will supply the relevant predictions as you start typing your search. The Knowledge Intelligence engine that’s being used surfaces relevant dynamic content to learners, providing recommendations of relevant learning content based on either people’s skill gaps or content that will keep them up to date and drive their curiosity.
This links into Fuse’s strategy in that you can use these AI-powered micro-feeds to pull users back into the platform and drive that engagement and activation. A really good stat to highlight this is that for Seasalt who have 87% monthly active engagement with an average of 3 return visits per week per user, which is brilliant and a worthy goal for any ambitious organisation to aspire to.
A new addition to this search tool is generative answers. It uses generative AI to generate answers from multiple sources, process them, and synthesize them. So, you could ask a specific question related to your role and it will consult all the relevant sources that it has access to, then pull those together, using natural language provide you with an answer.
The example of a good use case here would be enabling the reduction of call centre handling times by half, which plays into the productivity ethos that Fuse promotes.
Impressive multi-lingual capabilities
Fuse’s multi-lingual functionality offers 50+ languages (I think it’s also worth pointing out that these are all included as standard and not charged as extras) and provides dynamic content translation, including the transcription both from and to those 50+ languages. This means that you can create a video in English for example, and it will be auto-transcribed and auto-translated into as many of those languages as required.
Users in other countries with a different profile would be able to view those videos with the translated captioning on them. I think this is amazing functionality for organisations that have that need.
It can auto-transcribe a variety of different content, like video, articles, and questions, and enables you to have one learning object but as many different versions of that learning object in those multiple different languages as you want. So, you might have a welcome video as part of staff onboarding and you can have twenty different versions of that in 20 different languages, but it’s still just one object, which is obviously better for reporting.
It also facilitates auto-translations of the comments and social interaction with that content, so if a learner wants to ask a question to the trainer or SME they can do so in their own language. They can write their comment like you’d write a comment on Facebook or other social media, and when the SME sees it they can use a translate button to translate it into their own language. This is a great tool to enable cross-lingual communication and learning.
A great example of this is where content in Fuse School (Fuse’s social enterprise to educate children globally on secondary science and maths curriculum topics, which is used for free by over 10 million children globally) was translated for Ukrainian refugees.
On hand to help you launch your first learning experience with confidence
It’s not just Fuse’s platform that impressed me, but also the services they deliver to clients to complement it. They believe it’s essential to be at the client’s side, helping them to create their learning culture, create their content strategy, and provide consultancy to hold the client’s hand along the way.
This is because they recognise that performance is achieved through more than just the platform itself. Their Lx Accelerator service has been developed specifically to support this by helping clients create their initial MVP content or first learning experience, giving them that important initial boost that they can launch with the confidence that they’ll be offering some real value.
If you’re looking for a learning platform that links training to tangible improvements in business performance, then Fuse is one of the best solutions out there.
For large organisations looking to reach a global workforce across multiple languages, Fuse is particularly powerful, making translations and multilingual content extremely easy.
Bite-size learning content can be created and rolled out quickly at scale, and analysed with rich, intuitive dashboards – no wonder so many of the world’s best-known brands already use Fuse.
As the company is embracing and already leveraging the transformational powers of AI and natural language search, it looks set to get even more interesting and useful over the coming months and years.
Learn more on the Fuse website.