The Benefits of Online Training
Online training is here to stay and works for almost any industry. Most employees in larger organizations have already experienced some of the benefits of online training. Here are a few ways online training can be effective for most organizations.
Saves Time and Money
It costs far less, in both time and money, to offer training for employees right at their desks or on their laptops at home. Aside from the obvious savings of transportation, meals, and lodging, online training saves printing costs for materials that employees are likely to just throw in a drawer and forget. Not to mention it decreases planning and preparation time, travel time, and set-up time for all the audio-visual equipment. With online training, everything the employee needs to complete the training is already at their desk.
Asynchronous and Self-Scheduled
Employees like online training because they can choose when to take it. Most online training programs are available 24/7 with just the click of a link and a password. This reduces the stress of interrupting a pressing project to go to a live class. The employee can complete the training any time before a set deadline.
Privacy, Pacing and Portability
Many people don’t get the full benefit of a live training program because they are uncomfortable asking questions in a live class in front of others. Online training offers employees privacy and the opportunity to go at their own pace, repeating sections as necessary until they master the material, over several days or weeks. Others may find a slow pace excruciating and appreciate the opportunity to zip through the materials and demonstrate mastery quickly through online evaluations.
Online training is usually always available for review. Instead of throwing a printed manual in a desk drawer and forgetting about it, employees can refer back to and search the material online as needed—not just at their desks, but also on their phones and tablets.
Online training often comes in modules, like the levels in a video game, and to proceed to the next phase, the trainee must successfully complete an evaluation. If they don’t pass, they simply try again until they do. This way, they learn where they went wrong and gain an understanding of why the correct answer is “B” rather than “D.”
Multi-Media and Memorable
Most customized online training uses audio, video, infographics, simulations and/or animation, all of which are more memorable than a lecture in a classroom. Trainees can view or experience the material over and over again, and the repetition improves retention.
Consistent and Customizable
Large organizations can contract with online training specialists to customize training for specific roles within the company, and/or to produce more general modules that all employees should take. This way, everyone with the same role will get the same training, and all employees will get one definitive version of company policies and procedures. Scientific, industrial, service or non-profit organizations all take advantage of customizable online training; for example, if a lab employee requires accreditation, they have a variety of training courses available to them.
Socially responsible companies worry about their carbon footprint. Online training uses substantially less energy and produces far fewer emissions than live training. Think of all the added driving, flying, heating or air conditioning, and energy used for food prep and delivery that isn’t necessary with online training.
Measurable and Reportable
It won’t be a secret to trainees that their employer monitors their progress as they complete online training modules, but that’s a good thing. For the trainee, it’s a way to demonstrate commitment, mastery, and readiness for their next step up in the company. Plus, it provides near instant rewards by congratulating trainees on their success and helping them move forward to the next step.