As business returns to “normal,” the way things operate will be altered in many ways — starting with corporate training. Here are some tips to help you and your workforce navigate through it:
One thing is clear during this challenging time: evolution is key. In the case of corporate training, the pandemic has brought a sudden, radical change — a shift from learning in a traditional classroom setting to new online formats.
After three months of working remotely, the demand for digital courses and LMS access has grown substantially. This has caused professionals across the globe to operate under similar circumstances, perhaps resembling somewhat of a normal routine.
However, many learning leaders still find themselves in uncharted territory, eager for guidance on leading their organizations through new challenges. The biggest question being “How can I help employees navigate through today’s evolving business landscape?” And rightly so!
In order to thrive, this is something that we should spend time exploring. It’s important to consider what the new normal might look like, how that will affect business, and how to help employees adjust to it.
So, here are three key tips to help you and your workforce adjust to the new normal:
Continue delivering training online
Before, the training paradigm was composed of 70% offline means and the rest was virtual. Now, however, the scenario has been reversed. Online training takes up 70% of training, while only 30% is offline.
Some have even taken their learning programs to a hundred percent digital at the onset of COVID-19. In fact, a recent LinkedIn Learning Report revealed that budgets will continue to shift from traditional ILT to online learning in 2020, helping L&D scale learning globally.
But let’s move away from digital being a necessity now and think long term. The business case for online training shouldn’t only be deemed as a reactive strategy to the pandemic. Instead, it should be viewed as a huge business benefit going forward.
With the mass movement to remote work, the acceptance of online learning delivery has become widespread. And from the way companies have responded to it, whether it’s their first time trying it or not, digital learning is here to stay since it has presented great opportunities for L&D to support organizational continuity.
Not to mention, it’s beneficial for a company’s learning strategy in two main ways: optimizing costs and fulfilling the need for personalized, relevant learning that’s accessible to people whenever and wherever they need it. Because unlike conventional methods that require face-to-face presence in scheduled periods, digital learning requires little to no ongoing upkeep, thus delivering content faster and more efficiently.
So, if you’re considering transitioning from face-to-face to online training or have already made the switch, know that developing a sustainable digital learning strategy is a great way to futureproof your corporate training initiatives from whatever challenge comes your way.
Provide relevant and reliable content
As travel times and costs are totally slashed, digital training is more in demand than ever. Today, we’re seeing many people investing their newfound wealth into developing themselves. But the modern working life has become even more fast-paced due to the COVID-19 pandemic, making continuous productivity a challenge.
Presented with a gold mine of information in the form of online courses, learners now have the freedom to choose what pieces of content they want to consume and when to access it.
However, they are also getting increasingly impatient and turned off by content and experiences that aren’t high value and relevant; thus, it’s imperative to create a personalized learning experience that addresses individual training needs and different learning styles.
On top of that, content can be designed to target specific topics that employees should learn such as new work policies as they head back to the office and other compliance-based matters.
The modern learner, as described by Josh Bersin, is ‘overwhelmed, distracted and impatient’.
And as easy as it is to say that employees now have more time to develop their skills, the case for learning remains the same — the average time people have put aside to learn for work, is around 20 minutes a week. That’s a mere 1%. No wonder people are begging for bite-sized learning content. Plus, shorter courses allow learners to complete multiple ones in the same stipulated amount of time.
But even better than that, when employees realize that what they’re studying is directly applicable to their everyday work experiences, the more likely they’ll be interested to learn; thus, learning becomes more engaging, efficient, and enjoyable.
Be readily available to support learners
In light of the global crisis that has affected how people work and learn, L&D leaders must take extra steps — from creating stable virtual learning environments to investing in long-term planning and care — to help their workforces succeed.
They have to lead with empathy in order to effectively motivate and reassure employees through change. And that starts with supporting learners should any doubts, questions or concerns arise.
Because of how business has changed, training managers have entirely new job descriptions. For instance, they have to help employees successfully transition to remote working and increase digital readiness.
What’s more is that they have to ensure the productivity of their workforce, which requires focusing on both their emotional, work-related, and professional development needs.
Additionally, managers can guide employees through change by delivering clear, consistent, and honest communications. This is also just as important because changes are bound to occur throughout the learning process. And it’s essential for L&D leaders, especially, to stay on top of things to keep employees adequately informed.
This may pose as a challenge for some, but it’s something that can be done with the right tools and resources. Right now, companies are relying on digital tools and platforms to conduct everyday work and interpersonal exchanges. In the same way, addressing learner concerns should also be held online, which is why it’s imperative to have enough manpower or LMS capability to handle all of them.
Good thing there are solution providers that have dedicated learning consultants that can help managers guide and monitor employees in their learning. This way, human connection is maintained even in the online space.
Is your company’s learning strategy future proof?
Going back to ‘normal’ and returning to pre-pandemic operations is no longer possible.
The way we work and learn has changed, thus, training managers to make necessary changes so that business keeps growing and learners are always satisfied with their experience. Whether it’s making the permanent switch to online learning, developing new and personalized learning content, or guiding employees through change by keeping communication lines open.
Now is the time to adapt and reinvent learning and development. Contact us to learn how to accelerate your company’s cooperation training!