Employee Learning and Development Systems: Traditional vs. Technological
In today’s ever evolving market, proper employee training is essential to successful business practices. With so many training programs, seminars, and software, choosing what is right for your organization can be difficult. Although cost effectiveness is generally the bottom line, a responsible organization should also value a training program that is durable, reusable, easily accessible, and above all a system of interoperability.
Many organizations devote resources to on-site training led by instructors. These sessions tend to be more engaging for employees, and the instructors can differentiate the content of the course based on needs and skill levels. Although such sessions may be created to focus employees on particular standards of the organization’s operations, or on their specific core competencies, not all employees require similar training. Therefore, organizations are required to hire more instructors to train specific courses, which can be a more expensive and lengthy undertaking depending on the size of your organization and training needs.
As a money-saving alternative, organizations may opt for web-based training, sometimes referred to as the virtual classroom. Such programs can be ordered and created for an organization’s specific requirements. Allowing for synchronous and asynchronous training of groups as well as individuals, the e-learning setting provides a reusable medium that can be easily managed and implemented by human resource departments. Unfortunately, removing the instructor element from the training equation can lower the level of employee engagement, which lessens the quality of the training. Additionally, both technical support and maintenance are required to operate such training tools, assurance that your IT departments have suitable experience to perform these functions is necessary.
Combining Learning & Development Methods: A Powerful Formula
Neither of these two methods can fulfill all the needs of an organization, and in fact the synergy of the two is needed for optimal training results. Where it can be costly to hire individual instructors to train employees at separate locations across the nation and in some cases across the globe; having one instructor conducting a training webinar that is broadcast as a live feed will save both valuable time and money. These interactive sessions can allow for real-time interaction, via a conference call model or through instant messaging. While live sessions will allow for the most interaction, recording each broadcast for future use illustrates how this training method is a durable and reusable commodity for small businesses, large global for-profits and non-profits and every size organization in between.
Instructor teaching in a web-based environment must utilize innovative and engaging lesson plans to meet the needs of growing organizations. Training sessions must be especially designed for employees from entry-level to top executives in order to incorporate a standard for training that will satisfy the learning needs of the company as a whole. Using traditional instructor-led training in tandem with technological web-based training optimizes the quality and quantity of trained employees. Organizations that recognize this trend and act on it immediately will see a positive change in the level of skilled employees, as well as, a higher caliber of work that can only be produced by a well trained staff.