With rapid advancements in technology and limited face-to-face interaction due to the pandemic started in 2020, the use of e-learning tools has increased considerably. According to research, the e-learning market share is predicted to amount to 200 billion US dollars by 2024.
E-learning programs are not just a flexible means of learning, but they are also easy to implement and access. There are different types of learning management systems on the market that have made the learning process easy and well-structured. Here are some of the primary benefits of e-learning for your organization and its employees:
E-learning helps organizations save money on employee training. Unlike traditional employee training programs, these platforms are less expensive and allow you to save on various expenses, such as the cost of renting training rooms, traveling, catering, training materials, and so on. Your employees will need a reliable WiFi connection and a laptop to attend the training session.
Preferred Mode of Learning
Online learning is not considered a special activity anymore but is the norm in all aspects of work life. These learning and training tools are perfect for your tech-savvy employees who prefer digital learning platforms over traditional channels.
Compatible with the Work-from-Home Culture
Since COVID-19, social distancing and work from home have become the norm. Many employees started working remotely since 2020 due to the health risks associated with social interaction.
Hence, e-learning aligns with the new way of life as it enables employees to acquire training digitally. It’s safe to say the trend of e-learning is expected to continue. Even as the pandemic eases its grip on the world, organizations are likely to continue using e-learning as a primary method of training.
Your organization’s training programs should be designed in a way that your staff can accommodate them amidst their busy lives. E-learning is a convenient method that allows them to finish the training program at their own pace.
Employees can take on e-learning in short bursts as opposed to conventional training programs that may be time-consuming and hard to digest in one go. Studies suggest that learning in bite-sized portions improves efficiency by 17%.
A major benefit of e-learning is that you can customize it to fit your business needs. You can tweak the e-learning programs to complement your brand image.
Remember that not every employee learns new information the same way. A tailored e-learning program can ensure uniformity of the course content while allowing individual employees to regulate the pace at which they choose course materials and learn vital aspects.
A “cookie-cutter” approach to e-learning for your employees simply does not fare well in the modern day. Employees are likely to learn more effectively if they have the freedom to choose the assessments and activities they prefer.
E-learning is quite effective in enhancing the extent to which employees retain information. Making your content compelling and focused provides an environment conducive to learning.
Using audio, video, and gamification is known to considerably boost employee engagement and data retention. Gamification implies inculcating different game playing elements into your training program. It provides an enjoyable and interactive learning method to your employees, helping them absorb information more effectively.
Reduced Learning Time
E-learning not only saves your money, but also substantially saves your employees’ time. It can help you have your staff trained quickly so that they can become productive sooner. For example, it helps cut back on time spent on commuting to and from the training venue.
You can make e-learning materials available to your employees throughout the day. This allows your staff members to indulge in learning whenever it is convenient for them.
Unlike traditional training sessions, you can have international employees who work in different timezones to join online training sessions. Opting for an e-learning program enables you to provide your staff with comprehensive training without exhausting your resources.
With an e-learning program, you can gain access to expert trainers from different parts of the world to conduct the employee training and development programs.
You can also collaborate with staff members in different countries so they can take on problem-solving tasks in real-time. Your employees would be able to instantly connect with the training professionals in your respective field, no matter where they are located.
E-learning is not only affordable but also more environmentally-friendly. As it does not involve classroom-style learning and commuting, the method is much greener than conventional training.
If most organizations switch to the digital mode of employee training, it can help reduce paper consumption. This, in turn, will contribute towards fewer trees being cut. Moreover, as employees will not be commuting to the workplace, it is likely to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
If you are running a large multinational organization, it is likely to contain several departments, teams, offices, and remote workers. This may make it hard to link the entire workforce through a conventional training program.
One of the major benefits of e-learning for your employees is that employee training and development can be standardized across the board. The same content can be provided to all your employees across the world. Not only will your staff be able to watch the same training videos and live sessions, but they can also interact with those colleagues whom they do not meet physically in the office.
Measuring your training program’s progress and results becomes easier with e-learning. Having a system to determine each program’s progress is a smart way to make digital learning more effective.
You can gauge the participation and engagement of employees in order to analyze the value of the training. For this purpose, you can make use of specific digital learning solutions, such as analytical tools. This way, you can gain important statistics that will enable you to improve the employee training methods and meet your organization’s targets better.
Once you have developed an e-learning program, it can be scaled to cater to a large number of employees in multiple languages. It will save you the effort to find an appropriate venue for the training sessions and coordinate with a number of instructors.
A digital platform allows you to handle a large amount of data and enable workers across the globe to access it. No matter how many people are employed, an e-learning program can withstand a large number of workers accessing it at the same time.
Appealing to Millennials
E-learning is particularly suitable for the millennial workforce. Employees today do not just work to earn money but also to enhance their knowledge and expand their skillset.
In a conventional learning environment, your employees can only benefit from a certain number of training programs in a given time. On the other hand, with e-learning, learning is usually at the employee’s disposal, allowing them to prioritize according to their interests.
In order to boost employee participation, you can use online platforms that your employees are familiar with.
You can introduce the option of coaching, where older professionals can train those who are in the initial stages of their careers. Team-based learning is also a productive e-learning method, where employees with similar jobs can learn from each other and engage in productive discussions.
Better Engagement and Retention
Research shows that a majority of people forget most of what they learn in a few hours. With e-learning, the content is not just easily available, but it can also be accessed several times on the job.
With gamification and interactive content, you can make dry content much more interesting for your audience and boost employee engagement and retention.
This may be true for reference guides and specific topics, such as compliance procedures or new software training. Employees are sure to feel more confident about their skills when they know they have access to relevant material on the go.
Feedback and Recognition
Adding interactive elements, such as quizzes to a training program, can make it more interactive for your employees. It can give you immediate feedback from them, while they can gauge their own performance and identify the areas they need to improve on.
Adding gamification to your e-learning program, including elements like badges, leaderboards and certificates, offers a sense of achievement and recognition to your employees. Automated feedback is useful for managers as well. It eliminates the need to grade and give feedback manually.
Earlier, staff members from the human resource department would hold in-person orientation sessions with new employees to welcome them to the organization and inform them about company policies and their particular roles. However, many organizations have now switched to online orientations after the COVID-19 pandemic.
You can customize your orientation program by adding audios, images and videos, according to the new employees’ departments and duties.
In today’s fast-paced age, employees need immediate access to information. They don’t have time to sit through long lectures for that. Just-in-time learning helps them gain the knowledge they need to perform their tasks.
It is best to carry out workplace evaluations to figure out problematic aspects. Use this information to form focused digital training support materials for your team. For instance, if you find several employees finding a particular procedure difficult, introduce a task-based online training simulation.
How to Optimize E-Learning
Here is a list of some tried and tested e-learning tips that can improve your training for employees:
1. Identify Your Goals
When creating an e-learning program, many businesses start with identifying the courses. However, your first step should be to identify your program’s objectives and base the courses around them. Not only will this approach streamline your program but also provide you with a way to measure your efforts.
2. List Important Stakeholders
When introducing your employees to e-learning, you will be dealing with different kinds of people. It is important to take into account exactly whom to include, their duties, and what difference they would make to your e-learning plan. Vital players may include project managers, tech teams, content creators, and so on.
3. Form a Content Plan
Before you actually start creating an e-learning plan, chalk up a content plan that considers the essentials of your e-learning strategy, such as your target learner, content ideas, and means of content delivery. Once they are in place, you can designate course ideas to different team members to make the plan easier to execute.
4. Create a Schedule
E-learning should be well-organized so that your employees can efficiently perform their tasks and meet deadlines. When creating an e-learning program for your team, prioritize tasks, add to-do lists and significant dates in the schedule, such as start and end.
5. Have a Goal Per Module
While it is wise to have an overall goal for online training, it is important to have a goal for each module you create. Multiple learning goals in one module pose the danger of becoming counterproductive. Each module should have a simple goal that the learner would know they would accomplish upon finishing it.
Making e-learning rich and interactive is the key to ensuring your employees continue to learn effectively. You can form scenarios, stories, videos, and simulations that are tailored to meet your training requirements and realistically reflect situations that employees may encounter at work.
The online learning platform is risk-free, allowing you to simulate common problems in the workplace, including health and safety issues. The key is to create a program that is not just instructive but also immersive and enjoyable.