Category: Performance Support

Personalized knowledge at the right time
Support employees in coping with complex work processes

LTR Oliver Kern (Bayer AG – Division Crop Science), Frank Siepmann (eLearning Journal) und Thomas Blume (MTAC GmbH)

The complexity of work processes is constantly increasing. Accordingly, the employees also regularly need new knowledge to meet the requirements. However, traditional formal continuing education formats are often no longer sufficient. What is more promising, on the other hand, is to provide access to the knowledge required in the respective context directly at the workplace.

Good performance support makes this possible and makes learning at the workplace easier for employees. Most companies respond to training needs with classic face-to-face training or web-based training, which, however, usually do not lead to a long-term increase in knowledge once only. Bayer AG was also confronted with this problem, but responded with a project for individualized performance support.

The SkillCamp of Bayer AG, Division Crop Science trains several thousand employees from marketing and sales worldwide. The SkillCamp is a training form based on both, formal learning in classroom training and eLearning with virtual trainers. In addition, however, Bayer AG employees will in future also have the opportunity to obtain context-related information in their daily work outside of traditional training courses. The Electronic Performance Support System (EPSS) “SkillCamp Online” of Bayer AG, built up with the help of MTAC GmbH and the Know-How! AG, is intended to remedy this situation.

Learning needs

The basis of every performance support are the so called “5 Moments of Need”. These are five different scenarios in which employees need new knowledge. This always happens as soon as something is learned for the first time (Moment of “New”), when one wants to go deeper into a content (Moment of “More”), when one has to apply or implement something learned directly (Moment of “Apply”), when one has to solve unforeseen problems (Moment of “Solve”) or when one encounters changed situations or applications (Moment of “Change”). The SkillCamp Performance Support should react to all of these situations. With the help of the EPSS tool, marketing and sales staff should be offered access to the required knowledge in the respective situation. This helps users to make the best possible use of available resources, also supports them with case studies and videos, and is also intended to promote sustainable learning. Performance support should meet the individual needs of each individual, for example in terms of learning speed, depth of knowledge or contextual understanding.

Project progression

Numerous interviews were conducted to develop a suitable project concept, in order to decipher the essential factors of successful learning and to integrate them into the project. In addition, managers, other marketing and sales leaders, Subject Matter Experts and potential users of SkillCamp Performance Support were interviewed, to identify internal company needs. Internal and external subject matter experts were consulted to create the learning content. To ensure that these are also perfectly adapted to the agricultural industry, success stories from the areas of marketing and sales have been collected and woven into the learning content. In the next step, the contents were then adapted to the five “Moments of Need”.

Project outcome

With the new individualized performance support of SkillCamp Online, the previous learning content could be restructured into a “12-step-go-to-market” approach. Each of these steps or areas was transformed into work tasks and these in turn into concrete actions. Tools, checklists and examples are made available to the employees for processing the tasks. In this way, the learning content is directly linked to the respective work context of Bayer employees, which promotes successful learning. Although the classic SkillCamp training courses, such as face-to-face training, will continue to exist, employees of Bayer AG, Division Crop Science will also have online access to the knowledge they need in their day-to-day work. Based on EPSS, the SkillCamp online platform was created.

Bayer has also defined additional functions in the areas of marketing and sales, to provide even more personalized content. Depending on the specific function an employee has, he now gets the appropriate content. The underlying EPSS works with different meters and algorithms in order to be able to offer contents, that are even more personalized, according to a personal learning environment, apart from functions and activities. In addition, the SkillCamp Online has a search function with various filter options, which can be used to quickly find relevant content for the respective situation. Performance support is also regularly expanded to include content. Furthermore, how-to videos will support employees in the individual work steps in the future.


With SkillCamp Online, Bayer AG and its project partners have succeeded in making knowledge available to employees when they really need it. Based on a personal learning environment, employees are now provided with content according to their respective work context and can search for the required knowledge at any time if required. This not only accelerates work processes, but also improves them. From now on, the system will be the first point of contact when it comes to immediate help with problems in the workflow or when insights into tools, concepts and methods are required. For this purpose, the eLearning Journal jury honors the three project partners Bayer AG, MTAC GmbH and Know How! AG with the eLearning AWARD 2018 in the category “Performance Support”.

Specifications & special features

Bayer AG employees were trained in marketing and sales in the form of face-to-face training and classic e-learning courses on the “12-Step-Go-To-Market” approach. At the same time, however, learning is integrated directly into everyday working life by making knowledge easily and quickly accessible through an appropriate Performance Support System.

Special features:

The basic innovation of SkillCamp Performance Support is the approach to break down comprehensive learning content into concrete tasks and actions.


Bayer AG, Division Crop Science

Oliver Kern
Academy Manager

Bayer AG,
Division Crop Science

D-40789 Monheim


Thomas Blume

Ritterstraße 12
D-50668 Cologne

Know How! AG

Martin Kundt

Know How! AG
Magellanstraße 1
D-70771 Leinfelden-Echterdingen