by Igor Efremov, Head of Talent Acquisition at Itransition
From work to leisure, the pandemic has thrown our lives into a state of confusion. In the era dominated by information technology, when our social lives have already largely gone online, abandoning chalkboard teaching for eLearning would seem a natural thing to do. However, many housebound learners will agree that this couldn’t be further from the truth.
The same can be said about corporate training. When lockdown struck, most businesses had to switch to the remote mode of operation almost overnight, which created a whole new host of difficulties. Now, when 74% of companies plan to allow employees to work from home post-pandemic, online training may become the new standard.
The eLearning transition can pose quite a challenge for workers and employers alike. Luckily, there’s at least one solution for every hurdle. Read on to see the six main barriers to remote training adoption as part of digital workplace solutions of the present day along with the ways to move forward unhindered.
1. A new learning environment.
Despite its prevalence in recent months, eLearning is still a relatively new trend. Even younger workers are used to a traditional classroom and direct contact with colleagues and instructors. It is then hardly surprising that many professionals find it difficult to wrap their heads around distance training. Ensuring a seamless shift should be your top priority.
From logging into the platform to navigating it, your learning management system (LMS) should provide an intuitive and inclusive user experience. To do it, incorporate informative tutorials and videos to teach your employees how the portal works and onboard them faster. You can also run a trial on a select group of workers before launching the LMS company-wide and ask this test group for feedback. This will be incredibly helpful in large businesses hiring a diverse staff of highly specialized professionals.
2. Scheduling issues.
Now that many households have to double up as workspace, nursery, and school simultaneously, effective time management has become notably harder. If your employees struggle to keep up with the workload, they may find home-based training overwhelming. This, in turn, may quickly deplete their motivation to learn.
To prevent it, avoid delivering your eLearning content in bulk; instead, opt for microlearning with bite-size pieces of information. Present material in the form of short videos and graphics that are easier to absorb, revise, and fit nicely into a busy schedule. Make sure that your LMS can be accessed on mobile devices so that your employees can attend courses anywhere, anytime. If the training requires students to be present at a particular time (e.g., for a face-to-face talk with the instructor), set it up during the core hours to allow for personal schedules and avoid forcing workers to stay overtime to attend their courses.
3. Missing feedback.
Mistakes and progress are two natural parts of the learning process. Knowing one’s strengths and weaknesses is necessary to improve, but they need to be acknowledged first. You can’t do it without feedback.
A learning management software can provide it in several different ways. For example, the platform may generate a quick on-the-spot commentary after a trainee completes a test based on his or her result. If participants prefer more personal and in-depth feedback, they can talk with the instructor or course manager directly via the system. Analysis and assessment features will come in handy here, as well as voice- or text-based chats.
Remember that you as employer, too, can benefit from feedback. Ask your workers to rate the quality of a finished course or write a short comment to determine how you can enhance your training program.
4. Generic Learning Management Systems.
There is a stunning diversity of corporate training courses. An LMS that fails to address a given business’s individual needs, profession, and specific users is less efficient than a customizable content distribution platform.
Flexible solutions support various content formats and arrange it into easily-accessible catalogs and folders. Each group’s and learner’s progress can be tracked and assessed separately, allowing instructors to adjust the learning program accordingly. These platforms also include social networking features that encourage trainees to exchange knowledge and build learning communities. Picking an LMS that can be tailored to your business and stakeholders’ unique requirements will help you make training relevant and truly useful.
5. Humdrum content.
Even the most innovative remote learning platforms mean very little if the content shared is dull and unengaging. Bored trainees are less likely to absorb knowledge and less enthusiastic about future courses.
Luckily, a capable LMS can provide you with a range of thrilling features to keep users involved. Gamification and rankings will instill some competitive spirit in your employees and give them an incentive to learn. Captivating infographics and videos make an engaging upgrade from tedious slides and handouts. Progress trackers will help users keep focused on their goals, boost motivation, and give them the sense of accomplishment.
6. Lack of assessment.
If you want all the solutions mentioned above to bring results, you’ll need to measure their efficiency. This needs to be done on many levels, starting with individual workers up to entire departments.
Robust learning management systems come with advanced analytics tools that allow tracking progress and other metrics, such as enrollment, course completions, and test results. This data can then be extracted and presented in an understandable visual form in reports.
Of course, assessment also includes tests. Many modern eLearning platforms allow instructors to adjust the form of examination to the particular course and group. A common practice is to check trainees’ knowledge twice — before the course and once they complete it. Comparing the results will make it clear how the training improved your staff’s skills.
Initially, setting up and coordinating remote training in your enterprise may seem to you like a nuisance. However, with the proper approach and an all-in-all customizable eLearning solution, you can turn online instruction into a powerful asset that will help your workers upgrade their skills quickly.
Igor Efremov is Head of Talent Acquisition at Itransition, a Denver-based software development company. He applies 5+ years of executive experience to optimize human resource processes, streamline workplace collaboration and empower employees. Now he shares his expertise in fields of implementing workplace technologies, bringing digital transformation into the office and improving enterprise-to-employee relationships.