Are you still training new hires with nothing but hands-on training? If so, you may be wasting your hard earned money. The majority of employees agree that training is an important factor in job satisfaction, but it’s also time consuming and expensive.
By employing a digital approach, recruits are able to do much of the learning on their own, freeing up in-person training time for questions and practice. Incorporating online learning courses into your on-boarding process can save precious time and money, but many companies aren’t sure how to develop a course that hits the mark. With these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to designing an effective corp training course!
1. Know Your Audience
For just a moment, think back on your early education. If teachers had given even the brightest of 8th grade bio students a curriculum designed for college students, the results would have been disastrous. A key step to designing an effective training course is to study your audience carefully. Get a clear picture of what they already know, their average level of education, and their existing skill level. Don’t make any assumptions! Communicate openly with your employees to understand their background and areas of expertise. This will help you avoid wasting resources designing a course that doesn’t match up with employee needs.
2. Know Your Company
Evaluating your own needs is just as important as learning those of your employees. Before you begin developing your course, define clearly what employees should know after completing training. Whether they need to have a solid understanding of company policies or they’re learning the details of their job expectations, having well-defined learning objectives is critical. You must also define who the course is designed for: Is it for everyone, or does the course need to be adapted to adequately train employees across multiple departments? Without this step, the course may effectively teach employees information they don’t need or worse - leave them lacking training in areas that matter.
3. Design a Course Structure that Works
If you’re thinking about copy and pasting your company’s policies into a training course for employees to struggle through, FREEZE. The biggest perk of online learning is the ability to break learning into small, easy to digest segments. This kind of microlearning has been proven to boost focus, motivation, and attention. Interactivity is the other major plus.
By including interactive assessments and simulations, employees can continually engage with the learning material rather than zoning out by page 3. Make sure the course layout is intuitive as well; main menus, review pages, and assessment scores should be easy to find. Adding media elements like videos, interactive games, and infographics to break up long strings of text that hold the readers’ attention. After all, no one will learn the material if it’s too dull to remember! Last but not least, optimize your training course for mobile devices to add convenience for busy adult learners.
4. Consider Adding a Personal Touch
No employee would enjoy taking a dry, impersonal course that could have been copied from any generic training manual. If you want your employees to love your company, use your course to emphasize how much their work is valued! Adding a little humor and appealing to the emotions of new employees is a good way to humanize a potentially intimidating training process. A serious corporate environment can come across as cold and unforgiving, so adding a little fun lightens the mood and provides a more welcoming experience.
Emotions also improve memory and comprehension. If possible, design the learning material to evoke emotion; instead of just giving the what, give the why! Explain why certain values and policies are important to the company to show you care. If you care, employees will too! Using storytelling and real-world examples is a great way to apply this. Customizing the course design with the company logo, motto, and mission statement are other ways to make the experience more authentic.
5. Don’t Forget to Evaluate!
Our final tip for creating an effective course actually applies after the course has been created: take it for a test spin! Put the new course into practice and follow up with an employee evaluation. Did the course serve its intended purpose? Were all learning objectives met? If not, where did the course fall short? It helps not only to see the cold hard data, but to personally ask employees what they liked and disliked about the course. This allows you to put yourself in their shoes and better understand what learning gaps need to be filled.
There are many boxes to check to ensure an optimally effective training program, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Set clear goals, analyze employee needs, and make the training process welcoming and enjoyable. If you follow these steps, you’ll be well on your way to developing a corp training course employees will remember for years.
Looking for a tool that helps you follow these 5 key steps? That's where we come in! We provide everything you need to design, build, test and assess corporate training courses that can be distributed to your employees online and through mobile apps.
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