Continuous learning is a big deal in today’s corporate world. More companies have discovered the value of ongoing education in the workforce. Access to better training resources helps organizations build versatile, knowledgeable workers who become subject matter experts. This leads to a better product, service, and customer experience.
That sounds great, but a company cannot make learning a part of corporate culture without an investment. That means employees must have access to quality training courses and be allotted the time to attend them. As any professional knows, time is money.
One way to help offset the cost of a training program is by reducing the hours it takes to get employees through the material. That doesn’t mean learners should be forced to work at an uncomfortable speed. What it means is finding ways to streamline the process without sacrificing the depth and quality of your training program.
It is possible to keep knowledge retention rates up while trimming the time it takes to learn the material down. What can you do to get more workers through courses and on to their next career development milestone faster?
Use the Internet for Maximum Scheduling Flexibility
One of the biggest benefits of using eLearning is that it offers greater scheduling flexibility thanks to the internet. You can publish classes online, which makes them accessible to anyone in any location.
Your LMS will provide a portal for employees to log into when they want to learn. Self-paced courses are usually available 24 hours a day, so workers can train any time that it’s convenient. You won’t have to worry about scheduling around peak business hours or finding a time when everyone is available.
If you plan to host scheduled classes, consider doing so on the web. One class can be held for all employees, even those who are in different regions or working from home. You will significantly cut down on travel time and expenses so that all minutes invested are spent in the virtual classroom or working through online modules.
Keep All Text Content as Concise as Possible
Use conversational text that is concise. Cut anything extraneous, like useless modifiers. Use short, punchy sentences. These will work better for knowledge retention and avoid confusing learners with unnecessary fluff.
If you need to present a wall of words to your class, it may be time to consider whether the topic needs to be broken down into multiple courses. Overloading your training class with too much information at once can reduce knowledge retention and extend the time it takes for them to become proficient in a task or skill.
Make Sure Your Course Material Includes Visuals
Text is important, but it shouldn’t be the only thing you use to train employees. Make sure your course material includes plenty of visual aids. Charts, graphics, photographs, and videos are extremely valuable in the classroom.
LMS platforms usually include ways to upload, store, and present multimedia. Some even include authoring tools for interactive videos, which are far more engaging for learners. Using visuals helps reduce cognitive load and makes it easier to digest and remember the material.
Only Include Relevant Information in Each Course
Make sure each course covers a specific topic or activity. Going off on too many tangents can make it hard for trainees to understand the material. Avoid including anything unnecessary. Only discuss need-to-know information in each course.
If a job role requires a deeper dive into a skill or subject, then this can be provided as an advanced course that trainees can enroll in if they want to go in that direction. Don’t overexplain a topic and avoid duplicating content that is available elsewhere. You can always include a link to an online resource or a related course that trainees can click if needed.
Establish Clear Learning Paths for Workers to Follow
Make sure your employees have training goals and a roadmap to follow to achieve them. Your LMS may include a learning path feature that lets you compile different resources into one group. These can be set up with a specific order that must be followed to access the next step or with no order required.
Learning paths should be created for different job roles and goals. Workers will be more likely to develop their careers within the company if they can see a well-defined path to follow to earn a promotion or get a new position that they want. It’s also a great way to increase employee satisfaction and retention.
Pair Learners Up with a Mentor Who Will Guide Them
If you don’t know who your subject matter experts are, now is the time to find them. Use these individuals and others within your company to serve as mentors for trainees.
Mentors should have completed similar training and have experience in the job role or skill that’s being learned. They can serve as an additional resource that learners can turn to with questions. Having someone to support them through the training process will help learners get up to speed faster so that they transition into productive employees sooner.
Provide Self-Serve Support Options Like Online Tutorials
Have self-serve support resources available online. These can include demonstrations, tutorials, and knowledgebases. Most LMS platforms include a library or repository for documents, links, and more. This can be used as a centralized hub for self-serve assistance.
Rather than taking the time to find or email someone else, learners can search for help with a task or skill. Being able to search themselves cuts down on the time spent waiting for an answer. It also makes them more independent learners who will know where to go if they forget how to do something later.
Use Skill-Based Games and Simulations for Better Engagement
According to FinancesOnline.com, 80% of U.S workers surveyed felt that game-based learning is more engaging than traditional methods. Gamification increased engagement by about 60% and improved productivity by about 50%. The gamification market had a global value of over $9 billion in 2020.
Gamification is proven to be effective. Many LMS platforms include built-in gamification tools like leaderboards, profile badges, and activities. If you aren’t using these resources, you are missing out on a big boost to your training program.
Create an Online Community for Guidance and Feedback
Many LMSs also include an online community feature. This is usually in the form of a forum or chat. Some also include virtual whiteboards for collaboration. Create communities for your trainees to help them share ideas and ask questions.
Online interactions are fast and accessible from anywhere. Trainees can get answers sooner or share ideas and explain concepts to help others gain a better understanding of the material discussed in a class. More perspectives can help others grasp the information sooner, especially when a trainer is involved to help guide the conversation.
There are many ways to reduce the time it takes for the average employee to complete a training course. Try one or more of these methods to increase the value of your training program without taking away from the learner experience. Check the LMS.org blog to learn more about optimizing your eLearning efforts.