Interactive whiteboards were big news when they arrived on the training scene because they replaced the old chalk and duster as a key tool for teaching and learning. In the 21st century, the importance of online learning tools might just be making traditional classroom training a thing of the past.
Today, the benefits of eLearning in the workplace are taking the world by storm. It’s no wonder, then, that this industry reached over $56 billion in 2015 and is expected to hit $200 billion by 2024. Keen to know more?
Well, you’re in luck! Because we’ve put together an all-inclusive list of the benefits of online learning that apply to all organizations and their employees.
There are many advantages of eLearning and online training programs that are relevant to every industry, business, and employee around the world. Here’s why you should consider online employee training:
1. Convenient and flexible access
2. Easy on the budget
3. Serving different learning styles
4. Self-driven and self-paced
5. Measurable results and reporting
6. Digital record-keeping and administration
7. Aligned to 21st-century business
8. Interactivity and gamification
9. Accessible support from experts
10. Collaboration and community building
11. Immediate feedback and recognition
12. Widespread connection and standardization
Let’s have a look at them one by one.
One of the key advantages of eLearning in the corporate training environment is the flexibility learners get. They can access courses anytime, from anywhere, and from any device, whether it’s a laptop, tablet, or desktop.
This means that employees can learn while they commute, during their lunch break, or on a comfy couch. It also means that not everyone has to learn at the same time. Everyone has their own busy schedules, so employees can access their learning when they have time, and when their energy levels and focus are maximized for retention.
The word “cost-effective” might not be first to mind when thinking about the benefits of eLearning. This is because setting up an online training program for the first time can be quite costly, depending on how complex it needs to be. But it’s an investment that saves you money down the line.
Online training means that you can cut out the costs of travel expenses, catering and venue hire — not to mention the costs of facilitators and physical training materials, like stationary. And it gets better. eLearning courses can be re-used and updated without much expense or time so that one online training program can reach far more learners than a classroom workshop.
Not every person learns the same way. Some might retain knowledge through videos, others might prefer written notes, and some might need realistic opportunities for practice before they truly grasp a new skill.
One of the greatest benefits of eLearning for employee training and development is that you have a world of content formats at your fingertips. Videos, notes, infographics, games, and other content types make eLearning engaging for everyone.
Plus, by having a variety of different types of assessments, like quizzes and case studies, you can engage learners as they progress through the training. And more engagement is a sure sign that employees will want to complete their course!
At the start of a training program, the chances are slim that everyone will have the same level of knowledge, skill, or experience. Some employees might learn quicker or slower than others. Some might already be familiar with certain parts of their training that they don’t want to waste time repeating, while others might be completely new to certain concepts.
The benefit of eLearning for a business is that employees can learn at their own pace, according to their own learning needs. This means that employees aren’t put under unnecessary pressure, or painted with the one-size-fits-all training brush.
Knowing how effective training has been, is the question that every organization should be asking. Because an investment is only well made if it helped to achieve business goals.
When training takes place online, it’s quick and easy to pull the data you need to measure its effectiveness. Information like course completion rates, forum engagement, assessment grades, and the time it takes to complete a course can all be gathered in the form of reports, directly from the Learning Management System (LMS).
This is one of the major benefits of online training when it comes to business value. Training, especially in large corporations, usually means hours of hair-grasping administrative work. Someone must keep track of which employee has been allocated to each training program, who has completed, who is still busy, who has even registered… and the list goes on.
With online training, employees register directly on the LMS, and everything is a breeze from there. No pens, papers, and bursting ring-back folders. At any time, admin staff can log on and pull reports to identify which employees have started or finished their training, and who still needs a little nudge.
The simple fact that eLearning is technology-based is one of the advantages of online training for employees. Why? People today spend the majority of their time on their phones, computers, or other technology. This is what they are comfortable with. And that’s particularly true for the younger generations that have entered the workplace, namely millennials and Gen Z employees.
Given that most jobs require employees to leverage technology, why should their training be any different? That’s why eLearning is relevant to modern day businesses and jobs, and placing training on the platforms that employees are already using is bound to increase user adoption.
Some new skills just need more than simple notes and videos. Sometimes, learning requires active participation from employees. Think pilots, machine operators, and senior decision-makers. Once again, eLearning has the solution.
A powerful, feature-rich LMS that supports gamification, branching scenarios, and simulations can provide the ultimate level of interactivity and practice.
Interactive eLearning courses allow employees to practice new skills in a safe place, so when it comes to real-life implementation, they’re set up for success.
Almost all training can be delivered digitally, but sometimes there is still a need for live facilitation and expert support. No problem! One of the benefits of online training for employees is that they can learn in their own time, at their own pace, while still having access to subject matter experts.
Question and answer features, chat forums, and webinars are just a few of the ways that employees can get access to the live, personable guidance that they need. Plus, features that allow recording webinars and live tutorials ensure that no one misses out.
Learning can be lonely, but it should be a social exercise. Because employees often learn more through interactions with their peers than they do from reading a book. Bringing employees together could lead to debates and discussions that, in turn, lead to innovation.
The good news is that eLearning doesn’t have to be an individual journey. Because community and collaboration are actually benefits of online training. Through features like discussion forums and live tutorials employees can have access to others in the learning community. Engagement with other employees fosters collaboration and team culture, which has benefits beyond the training environment.
When online training incorporates interactive elements like quizzes and scenario-based activities, employees have access to immediate feedback. Yet another one of the benefits of eLearning in the workplace.
Immediate results from online assessments help employees gauge how well they are doing, and what sections of learning material they might need to revise before they move on. In addition, gamification features that incorporate leaderboards, badges, and certificates provide employees with a sense of recognition and achievement that motivates them to learn.
Timely and automated feedback is valuable not just for employees, but for their managers and the business, too. This is because it reduces the need for manual feedback and grading.
Organizations with multiple teams, departments, and offices, geographically dispersed teams, or remote workers, often struggle to connect employees through a standardized training program. Luckily, this is one of the benefits of training and development through an online learning environment.
With an eLearning program, organizations can deliver the same content, in the same way, to all of their employees around the world. Not only will employees attend the same live sessions and watch the same videos, but they will be able to interact with other team members that they do not have access to in the physical office.
The benefits of eLearning in the workplace are more than enough to convince you to take your staff training online. Now, all you need to know is how to make your employee training and development work and watch your people and business thrive.