For nearly every job, employee trainings are a common occurrence and help employees grow, learn about new products, and develop new skills. But too often, these trainings are an afterthought and become stale and uninspired.
These strategies will help you improve your virtual employee training curriculum and create a learning environment that your colleagues enjoy. With the right mindset, employee trainings can be fun!
The benefits of virtual employee trainings
Before we discuss strategies to improve your employee trainings, let’s evaluate why these trainings matter and the benefits of creating virtual courses.
Regular trainings are beneficial for both employers and employees because it helps participants stay up-to-date on current skills. They can also be a great way to onboard new employees and help them understand your brand or product. According to Management Help, the main benefits of employee trainings and development include:
- Increased job satisfaction and morale
- Increased employee motivation
- Increased efficiency
- Increased ability to adopt new technologies, processes, or methods
- Reduced employee turnover
- Enhanced company image
- HR benefits (risk management)
But not all companies can implement regular in-person trainings, either due to remote employees, scheduling conflicts, or other work-related priorities. Enter: virtual employee trainings. Here are some benefits of virtual training:
- Flexible scheduling
- Effective learning experience
- Opportunity for interactive portions
- Immediate feedback
- Increased participation and engagement
- Error reduction
Leading a successful virtual employee training is both an art and a science. These strategies can help you improve your training curriculum and keep employees engaged:
Incorporate Challenges or Games
Friendly competitions are a great, fun way to keep employees engaged during training and to test their knowledge against coworkers. Rather than sticking to a traditional lecture, incorporate fun things like trivia or polls to interact with your team. These active learning strategies can also be applied to employee trainings, offering a fun and unique training experience.
Create opportunities to interact
Another way to maintain the interest of your virtual team is to make the conversation a two-way street. The most engaging in-person trainings include audience participation, group chats, and face-to-face interactions. There’s no reason why you have to lose this engagement with virtual trainings. Use a software that allows participants to ask questions, such as a live chat, and provide time in your presentation for these questions. If you’re not doing live employee trainings, encourage the audience to come up with questions to present to their team after the training.
It’s even easier to get distracted while participating in a virtual employee training because it’s harder to stay engaged with a computer screen for a long time. To combat this, encourage participants to use their distractions to their advantage. Incorporating the use of smartphones into your presentation via audience response software, such as Poll Everywhere, is a great way to meet your team where they are.
Before you launch your employee training, run it by a few internal teams to make sure it’s up to par. Encourage feedback on things like the course material, the presentation length, and how engaging the training is. If your internal employees get bored, chances are that your participants will too when it comes time for the real thing. You can easily solicit anonymous feedback using a live polling software. This constructive information will only make your employee trainings more engaging and useful.
Include visual elements
Studies show that 65% of people are visual learners and that visual information is better retained in people’s long-term memory, helps transmit messages faster, and improves comprehension. Many teachers have seen the power of visuals work surprisingly well in virtual classrooms, and virtual employee trainings are no different. Make sure to include images, graphics, or trivia quizzes in your training and to discuss the key points, rather than filling your entire slide with words.
Stick to an agenda
Presenting an agenda of your talking points before diving into the training helps provide your team with a clear outline of what’s to come. Hubspot Academy does a great job of this. They have courses made up of a series of videos and clearly state what each video will cover, how long they are, and how long the whole course is. This is also a great strategy for trainings that employees may need to revisit. Your team can easily start where they left off or rewatch important material.
Employee trainings are a powerful way to sharpen your company’s skills, teach something new, or onboard new employees. These interactive strategies will help you make the most out of these trainings and keep your audience engaged from start to finish.