Learning Management Systems 101 is a weekly blog series exploring how employers can rethink traditional employee training and move toward e-learning solutions, which are faster, easier to access, and more cost effective. “Rethinking Your Approach to Employee Training” is the second post of the series.
LMS 101: Rethinking Your Approach to Employee Training
Employers who understand that training is a vital contributor to organizational growth are continuously challenged to deliver training that is practical for the company and beneficial to employees. Consequently, there is a need for employers to rethink how knowledge is delivered, accessed and shared across the organization. Here are six factors to consider.
Training Should Align with a Direct Business Need
Training will not solve job performance problems if the real issue lies elsewhere – such as employee motivation, compensation systems or job design. For training to work, there needs to be an association between the training itself and the reason for the training.
For example, a banking sales representative may have superb selling skills but poor product knowledge. Through appropriate product knowledge training, he or she may achieve a good balance of product knowledge and selling skills.
Therefore, it is important to perform a detailed analysis of the issue before leveraging training as the solution.
Organizations Are Progressively Adopting Online Training
Classroom-based (traditional) training can be impractical and expensive for employers to implement. Among other things, there are instructor costs, venue costs and course material costs to consider with traditional training. For these reasons, more and more employers are turning to e-learning (online learning) solutions.
- Workflow Friendly
According to a study by Brandon Hall Group, it typically takes employees 40 to 60 percent less time to study a particular material via e-learning than in a traditional classroom setting. This is due to employees being able to access training online whenever they need it, without interrupting their workflow.
- Boosts Retention
The Research Institute of America concluded that e-learning boosts retention rates by 25 to 60 percent, compared to retention rates of 8 to 10 percent with traditional training. This is because e-learning employees have more control over the learning process and are able to revisit training as needed.
The University of the Potomac stated that 67 percent of college instructors believe online media – such as blogs, video and podcasts – are necessary teaching tools.
On-Demand and Mobile Learning is Growing
On-demand training does not include an instructor. Instead, employees access training on their own, any time, from any device with an internet connection – such as a desktop computer, laptop, smartphone or tablet. According to Chief Learning Officer magazine, most organizations (58 percent) prefer to use on-demand learning for compliance training, compared to 12 percent who prefer in-person, instructor-led training. In addition, one out of three chief learning officers use mobile devices to deliver compliance training.
Globally, the mobile learning market is expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate of over 36 percent from 2015 to 2020 – and in 2014, the U.S. remained the leading purchaser of mobile learning technology.
Blended Training May Be More Fitting
Depending on your industry and employees’ roles, online training alone may not be sufficient. In this case, a blended approach, which combines traditional face-to-face learning with e-learning, may be ideal. According to a study published by the Journal of Medical Internet Research, blended learning for health professionals appears to be more effective than (or at least as effective as) traditional instruction.
Modern Learners are Visual with Short Attention Spans
Learners today tend to have packed schedules, short attention spans and an attachment to their mobile device. The majority are also visual learners. Studies estimate that visual learners make up approximately 65 percent of the U.S. population. These pupils need to see what they are absorbing, preferring bite-sized training – such as videos requiring no more than two to five minutes each – over lengthy training sessions.
Company-Wide Information Efficiently Disseminated
Dispersing information to employees across different departments and locations via the traditional training method can be time consuming and financially strenuous. A more feasible option may be an e-learning platform, such as a learning management system, capable of quickly delivering company-wide information to relevant employees, thereby keeping them on the same page while lowering training costs.
Be sure to check out the first Learning Management Systems 101 blog post about the evolution of corporate learning.