Benefits of blended learning for effective corporate training
Who hasn’t sat through a mind-numbing, energy sapping, “what did I do to deserve this” meeting or training session, and not felt the urge to whip out their phone — just for a moment — to check their inbox or have a quick scroll through their Instagram?
(No one? I thought so)
With so much going on around us, there’s no doubt we find it difficult to focus. Lately, this has created a growing challenge for businesses who need to find effective training methods which grab, and maintain their staffs’ attention.
That said, the digital age has also created an opportunity if you’re willing to adapt. While old, slightly outdated and traditional face-to-face training is is still important, businesses are now combining it with online learning components as part of a blended curriculum which better caters to individual learning styles and preferences.
Here are some examples of blended learning activities, and how they can be used to better your training processes.
Turn our addiction to tech into an advantage
HR managers have always struggled to retain employee engagement. But with today’s workforce, it seems like the only thing that manages to sustain their attention is that tiny screen in their hands… One study showed that young people spend over four hours a day on their digital devices — and with more of this cohort now entering the workplace, it’s becoming more important for you to utilise the technology at their fingertips to keep their attention.
One way of achieving this is through education and training modules on the platforms your employees already use. Create bite-sized private training videos for Youtube or start a Facebook group to bridge the employee engagement gap and help to keep people involved in what they’re learning. Some businesses even ‘gamify’ the training process by creating interactive games for their employees to use, which help them learn along the way.
Provide greater flexibility in your staffs’ learning
To get the most out of blended learning in training and development, you should incorporate cloud-based platforms which give your employees access to training materials anytime, anywhere through their phone or computer. By offering the flexibility for people to learn at their own pace — in an environment that suits them — employees have a greater opportunity to focus on learning, without disrupting their day-to-day work schedule.
Cater to different personalities and learning styles
People absorb information through different modalities. For some, it might be visual, while others prefer a hands-on approach. This has big implications for group training because it highlights why a standardised approach won’t always work. Instead, by adopting blended learning in training and development, you can cater to various learning styles in your teams.
Blended learning can tailor to different personality types. For example, class-based group training can prove difficult for more introverted people, who may prefer to learn independently or through a self-paced eLearning platform.
Lower training costs
Online training is far more cost effective than class-based learning, where the expenses of venue hire, instructor fees, travel, and accommodation can really add up. Not to mention pulling employees away from work at times that may be far from ideal. For businesses who build a digital component into their learning program, the cost savings are significant.
Of course, using online training systems isn’t free and requires a license, but these costs in both time and money are typically far outweighed by getting the group together at the same time and place.
Track employee performance and progress
By using blended learning in corporate training and development, you can collect valuable information about the performance of your staff. This might involve assessing an individual’s ability to work with your team, demonstrating a practical skill in a workshop, or examining the results of online assessments to see where they’re performing well, or what areas still need work.
The ability to collect and analyse data helps employers evaluate the effectiveness of their blended learning programs. It provides insights into which formats are most successful in keeping people engaged, and which results in real life improvements and outcomes.
Happy, knowledgeable, and skilled staff are key to any successful business — which is why blended learning is becoming so important for anyone undertaking corporate training. Investing in the blended learning systems which your employees want to use is the best way to keep their focus next time you want to upskill your team.
For more tips on boosting engagement, check out our guide on grabbing attention with the right questions.