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8 Of The Most Effective Employee Training Methods

Posted by Joe Moriarty on October 23, 2020

In employees, Corporate Training

When tasked with devising and delivering corporate training, there’s always a lot to consider.

However, the most important consideration should always be which methods will benefit both your employees and your business.

Getting the right balance of impact, understanding, and ease of implementation is important too.

This means understanding your teams’ training preferences, as well the learning objectives being set, the overall cost, and the perceived performance benefits for staff once training is complete.

There are a lot of different training methods to choose from. Here we’re going to cover our pick of the 8 most effective ones available today. 

1. E-Learning

Computers have been used to create and deliver content for many years now.

As technology evolves, the depth of customization we can create increases – and the ways in which trainees can interact with training also grows.

E-learning courses are now most commonly accessed by logging in to an online portal or corporate LMS where a training course is broken down into sections that the trainee must complete.

E-learning courses are extremely popular for a number of reasons.

At the top are both cost and scalability. Without the need for dedicated physical environments the training can be offered at any time and in any place that has a computer. A large amount of e-learning can also be automated, lowering overhead and decreasing the instructor's need to constantly be involved in the student's experience. 

But is that enough?

While many might think that training in this way could leave learners feeling distanced from their peers and tutors, or unable to fully participate in ‘classroom’ discussions, given dramatic growth in online learning’s popularity in recent months; the experience will continue to get better and better.

2. Classroom Training

When it comes to good old fashioned learning, classroom training remains incredibly popular – due in part to the familiarity both trainers and trainees have with it.

This setup involves the trainer presenting to a classroom – just like a lecture – often supported by a presentation which contains the content covered in view of the whole class.

The major benefit of this classroom-based setting is that they provide direct, in-person communication between instructor and trainee.

Questions that arise during the course can be brought up and responded to quickly and effectively. They can also be used as wider talking points – creating group discussion around topics to help cement learning.

However, one issue that classroom training has is its lack of scalability. The classroom environment can only house so many students at once.

Depending on the size of your facility it is unlikely that you will have a suite of rooms solely dedicated to training.

Also, as companies implement remote working, coordinating large groups of people to meet at a central location isn’t possible right now – which may be the case for some time yet.

3. On-The-Job Training

On-the-job training is another classic approach to providing employee education.

It is typically aimed at equipping staff with the skills to take on new roles or to help them tackle specific tasks. An employee will start working in a new function straight away and will often shadow someone already in the role.

Aimed at simpler tasks due to the lack of content control, on-the-job training is a great way to give employees a sense of accomplishment, as they know that their role is also providing them with a learning opportunity.

One drawback of this method is that even if they are shadowing someone as part of the training, this person is unlikely to be a dedicated trainer. This can mean often that the training and advice that they provide or the methods the trainee picks up on their own, may not be the exact way the company would like a process handled.

4. Mentoring

Mentorship programs have been a staple of training environments for a very long time and for good reason. Mentoring gives trainees access to a dedicated person within a business who guides them in their role and in the company.

A trainee will learn not only about a role but also about the culture of the company – with the added benefit of developing their relationship with a member of the team.

The process is also two-way – with a mentor getting to see their role and others from a different perspective; as well as learning skills through working with a new member of the team.

Training through mentoring, however, is often far less structured than other methods. This is because mentors support a trainee in a more personal capacity as opposed to guaranteeing that they learn specific content.

5. Simulations

Simulations are training scenarios that give trainees the opportunity to practice tasks that mimic the actual work they will do in their role. A simulation can be created for the purpose of offering ‘dry runs’ – where a task is done without a key component.

Simulations are typically used in environments where the risk of failure is high. This could include risk to the trainee, or to other people, or materials involved in the activity.

Using simulations is an excellent way to practice tasks that are also difficult to isolate. For example, the use of flight simulators – in which trainees can prepare for particular events such as technical issues without having to actually have them.

The issue with most simulations is price. The cost of creating a simulation must be less than the risk of failure in a real environment.

Also, most jobs do not have such great risk attached to them and so can be practiced without the need for expensive simulators.

6. Job Rotation

This training method focuses on moving employees between multiple roles within the company to increase the skillsets of those employees. 

Many of the skills learned can often be transferred to other roles – giving people in an organization the opportunity to experience different jobs and the specific tasks associated with those roles.

Job rotation is an excellent way of motivating your teams – as you’re essentially giving your employees the opportunity to take on new tasks that also bolster their professional resumes. It also gives employees the chance to try new things that they may be more suited to or more interested in. This has a two fold benefit in that it motivates that person, but also potentially gives you someone who will do a better job at a particular post.

The obvious disadvantage with this system, is that it’s under constant rotation – and a great deal of time is dedicated to learning new roles. 

While many skills are transferable there are immutable differences between roles in a business. Overcoming this takes time. The other major disadvantage is that during rotation some of employees may find themselves in a role that they do not enjoy which can be demotivating.

7. Video Content

With its roots in classroom-based training, traditional video training started with video cassettes tapes which groups of employees would watch as part of their courses.

It has come a long way since then, with videos being tailored specifically to their audience and being accessible from the cloud at any time. Videos now are typically created using animation or actors to help engage with the audience.

Video content is a large part of how we consume content in our personal lives from the use of TVs through to social media. This means that people typically are far more receptive to this style of teaching rather than static presentations. 

Compared with some other methods, video content strikes a good balance between cost and efficacy. It is created by a training team so it will cover all the points required and there are even free video creation services online that companies can now use.

The main drawback is that videos are notoriously difficult to edit if information changes. This means that they are not always up to date, otherwise the video content will become dated and inaccurate.

8. Game-Based Training

Gamification in employee training has become far more popular in recent years as a result of improvements in computing technology.

A subset of e-learning, it delivers training course content through an environment that rewards successful completion of milestones within the training.

Being able to give trainees in-game achievements, enables them to quickly connect their learning to a reward system. This solidifies the idea that the training is beneficial to them by creating benefits outside of the training itself. The confidence and motivation that this instills in a trainee is considered the strongest aspect of this system.

However, as a refined version of e-learning. it has the ability to alienate people in age groups who don’t have an experience with gamified environments – which can lead to them feeling disconnected from the content.

Streamlined Learning Management

Whatever methods you choose, managing your learning systems is key to delivering effective training. That’s where Raven360’s Learning Management System comes into its own. 

Our comprehensive enterprise LMS helps learning professionals in all kinds of organizations handle all of their content from one place. 

Not only that, but it also offers numerous employees training methods – including video coaching, gamification, and hands-on e-learning.

All things considered, your organization’s culture and size, along with your teams’ working environment, be it remote or office-based, is going to influence your training choices heavily. But if one method isn’t enough, finding a way to broaden employees’ horizons means tailoring learning to their needs. 

Thankfully, making resonant, lasting change no longer means working with different platforms and partners.

 

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