Many companies have already moved their training programs online and are discovering the myriad benefits of this format. For the holdouts, or businesses that perhaps need just a nudge, here are the top 10 reasons you should give online training a try.
1. Less Expensive
How much does your company spend on training? When you calculate this number, be sure to take into account all costs, including travel, printing costs, and employee time. Online training completely eliminates some of these costs (e.g., travel) and significantly reduces others (e.g., employee time).
2. Saves Time
Online training allows companies to get employees up to speed faster. By some estimates, online training confers time savings of 60% over instructor-led training.
3. Consistent Across the Organization
For companies that have multiple trainers working over multiple sites, consistency can be a concern. Online training guarantees that a course is delivered in the same way to all employees.
4. Can be Archived and Re-used
How often do you deliver your employee orientation training program? Does the content change significantly each time? With online courses, you can use the same content and materials over and over as long as they are relevant and useful. Plus, if a revision becomes necessary, it is easy to instantly alter one part of the course and have it immediately distributed to all learners.
Corporate training’s bad reputation comes from somewhere! The dominant instructor-led model of training is highly instructor-oriented, and thus not very engaging. Online training allows the learners to take charge of their education, learning at their own pace, on their own schedule, and according to their own needs.
6. Just-in-time Training
Instructor-led training is, by definition, just-in-case. This means that learners take courses in advance, and then may or may not be called upon to use the knowledge at some point in the future. No wonder employees forget the vast majority of what they learn in such courses. Online training is just-in-time: it provides access to information, tutorials, and other resources exactly at the point of need.
7. Superior Learner Tracking
Be honest, do you really know what your employees are learning in your instructor-led training programs? A lack of adequate learner assessment and tracking is one of the reasons most workforce education programs are ineffective. Online training allows you to track many aspects of the learner experience, including grades, time spent on task, and more.
Instructor-led training is not very scalable. To train more people, you usually need to add more course sessions (which takes more time and costs more money). With online training, you can have an unlimited number of participants—after the training is developed, the marginal cost of adding learners is practically zero.
9. Less Stressful
Training is highly stressful for many employees. They may be hesitant to ask questions or make a mistake, for fear that their job might be in danger if they show a lack of knowledge. Because it allows learners to move at their own pace and approach the material in the way they are most comfortable, online training is much less stressful, which means employees are more likely to engage in it.
When you think about online training experiences, you might not think of personalized learning, but that is exactly what they offer—students can customize the learning experience in the way that works best for them. Not only can learners work through the materials when and how they want to, but also they can revisit modules as many times as necessary. This is much different from an instructor-led course, in which often the goal is just to get through the required material in the time provided. In addition, with trainings that incorporate social learning tools, learners can easily connect with others, and with the instructor, to find answers to their questions.
Online training provides significant advantages in educating today’s workforce. Explore your options today for taking advantage of the technologies available.
Author Bio: David Miller is an educational researcher who has vast experience in the field of teaching, Learning management system and online training. He is associated with prestigious universities and many leading educational research organizations. He’s also an ed-tech veteran, currently pursuing research in new eLearning software, and is a contributing author with ProProfs.