Over the years, we’ve all been acclimatised to fast-changing times. It took thousands of years for technology to advance from the primitive wheel to the first car, yet just a handful to move from the car to the aeroplane. Change is, of course, inevitable, but our growth, and adaptability to it has increased exponentially over time.
The industrial revolution was a huge catalyst to this change. Practically overnight, old, cumbersome processes of work were rendered obsolete. It was a stark and sudden change, which was not received well at the time. But today, no one can deny that the seeds sown by inventors and visionaries during that time have grown into the fruit of convenience and efficiency that we are consuming today.
We could be nearing another such revolution now – and one could argue that education seems to be the prime focus of this one. Not just for children in classrooms, but also for employees in every organisation in every industry. More and more corporations are moving beyond “outdated” training methods for their employees, mainly because they simply don’t live up to the high requirements of jobs today. The advent of the internet made things easier – but the concept of “eLearning” is what really helped bridge that gap.
It has made the process of learning on the job faster, more efficient, and above all, more enjoyable. The whole premise of eLearning is to make sure that employees are motivated enough to seek learning for themselves, and to have full access to hundreds of resources when they do.
If you are a company aiming for an eLearning training program for your employees, here are a few steps for you to get moving. From how to pick the right eLearning digital tools to how to prepare your employees for your eLearning program, we will answer it all in this article.
Enlist Your Goals
In the words of Zig Ziglar, “a goal properly set is halfway reached”. While designing your training program, it is necessary to set a concrete goal you plan to accomplish with it. These goals can vary from making training convenient for employees, boosting knowledge retention, improving learning outcomes, and also saving training costs. It can be anything that works in favour of you and your employees.
One simple trick that helps decide these goals is identifying the weaknesses of your past training programs. Speak to your employees and encourage them to share feedback on your existing training program. Make a note of what did not work for them, and avoid repeating the same mistakes when designing the new one.
Once you have more context, you’d be in a better position to pick the right eLearning tools for your employees. For instance, if your employees suggest that your previous program was not engaging enough, your first goal could be to make it more interactive, or to change the medium of presentation. This is where Siminars excels – it enables you to easily create more engaging content by adding mix-media elements to your course, like videos, audio files, images, Youtube videos, and quizzes that employees can solve to check their progress.
Send Surveys To Determine Employee Requirements
The first step to creating an effective training plan is to first put yourself in the shoes of your employees.
Each employee has different learning requirements, and the only people who can help you design a program that caters to these needs, are the employees themselves.
Communicate with them so that they can share their expectations from the eLearning training. Sending out a survey (especially one which allows for anonymity), is a good first step. Based on the results, you can research the different eLearning tools that can satisfy their expectations. The survey will allow you to recognise patterns in their feedback, and will enable you to make a more concise judgment on the learning priorities for the entire team.
Create A Budget Plan
eLearning is considered to be the most cost-effective approach in the long term. It is not only cost-efficient, but also saves time, and effort, which are best reserved for more important goals. As an example, IBM saved approximately $200 million after switching to e-learning.
However, if poorly planned, it might end up burning a hole in your pocket. Think of it as a one-time investment, with consistent and recurring dividends in terms of convenience and ease of access.
The cost also scales according to your own requirements – you can choose to invest in only the tools that are relevant to your requirements. This requires a little prior research, but is assuredly worth it.
To plan your budget, first, analyze the cost of your previous training program. This includes the study materials, hiring of guest speakers and consultants, special equipment, and other supplies used.
Once you have these expenses listed, find the eLearning tools that can help you optimise them. For example, if the cost of study materials was a large chunk of your previous program, pick a digital tool that will allow you to share study materials online. This eliminates the cost of purchasing multiple copies, and will also save on printing costs.
Accentuate Benefits Of Your eLearning Program To Your Employees
It is important for employees to be aware of the benefits of their training so that they can engage with it more meaningfully. List down the set of skills that the employees will develop throughout their training. Also add the tasks that they will become better at as a direct result of it.
This provides a sense of fulfillment at the end of each session, and encourages employees to seek out more trainings, if they so wish. It becomes a form of motivation, and imparts a sense of confidence that boosts their morale.
Offer Tutorials On Your Training Tools
eLearning is designed to be intuitive. Over time, employees will have the confidence and the ability to use the provided tools by themselves. In the absence of an instructor, they should at least know the basics of the software, and have a general understanding of how it works. To avoid any roadblocks, technical or otherwise, you should consider setting up tutorials for the training tools you plan to use. You can offer demos to all employees, and one-on-one support for those that have difficulty grasping the specifics of it. Adding a Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) section will also address many of the basic questions that they may have, at any time.
With Siminars, you also have the option to add video tutorials in your training program for all the digital tools and their features. This will not only save time on your end but will be more convenient for your employees as well.
In The End
The ultimate objective of your training program should be to equip your employees with all the tools necessary to focus on their own learning and professional development. They will benefit much more from being able to learn freely, rather than be restricted by textbook methodologies.
However, one cannot take a hands-off approach and simply let the employees learn by themselves. As an employer, your responsibility is to make sure that all training is delivered properly and accurately – remember, it’s much more difficult to unlearn something once it’s already been taught.
Keep the feedback loop open for your employees to share points of appreciation for the training, or suggestions on how to improve it.
Create an environment that will equip a learner to help his or her teammates wherever needed. This internal support system will help to forge stronger bonds within your organization, and encourage teamwork between employees, regardless of department or designation.
Siminars provides you with the resources to create a training program tailor-made to your organization.