The first half of 2020 saw a sharp increase in remote work worldwide. Labor economics is undergoing a revolution, and now more than ever, business leaders are learning to manage newly-digitized workplaces.
For companies that didn’t have extensive remote-work infrastructure prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, this transition has posed many challenges. One of the most complex aspects of virtual workforce management is online training.
Learning and development play a vital role for growth-focused organizations. After all, training is the foundation upon which day-to-day work occurs. And if that foundation is not strong, sturdy, and sustainable, then daily operations cannot flow smoothly. This is especially true now that workforces have become decentralized.
The shift to remote training might seem daunting, especially if your business only began the transition as a result of social distancing restrictions. However, virtual employee training can yield significant benefits to your business. Plus, thanks to the growth in enterprise tech, it’s easier than ever for companies to join the work-from-home movement.
In this article, we’re covering the most important things to know about remote training in 2020. We’re providing you with facts and stats that will help you steer your business into the future with a successful remote work transition plan.
These are the three most important things to know about virtual training in 2020, and if you want to know why, keep reading!
- Remote training is not a fad, it’s the future.
- Virtual training technology is abundant and effective.
- It is possible to maintain company culture with remote training.
1. REMOTE TRAINING IS NOT A FAD, IT'S THE FUTURE
While it’s true that many businesses were forced to transition to remote operations due to social distancing requirements, all trends indicate that work-from-home policies are here to stay. This means that e-learning for employee training will only become more commonplace over time.
Our economy started to pivot away from brick-and-mortar offices long before COVID-19 broke out. The pandemic only accelerated a change that was already taking place. Large-scale business changes can be difficult to manage, but this one is well worth it.
This change has been underway for good reason. There are many benefits to remote work and virtual training that have driven these trends. For instance, 90% of respondents in one survey said they get more work done when working remotely (source). This means that expanding your business’ work-from-home policies can boost productivity in your workplace.
Another survey conducted by Indeed found that 50% of remote employees reduced their sick days as a result of working from home. Similarly, 56% of respondents said working from home reduced their absence rates. Fewer absences and sick days means healthier employees and more productive days for your business.
Working from home appears to be as beneficial to health as it is to happiness. In another survey, 80% of remote employees reported feeling less job stress during the work week. The same survey also found remote workers to be 57% more likely to be satisfied with their job than the average worker. By now, we all know that happy, healthy workers are more productive and less likely to leave their jobs. So increasing overall employee wellbeing and happiness can yield significant returns to your organization.
Altogether, these statistics indicate that remote work will remain the new normal, even after COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. Therefore, it is wise to invest in this aspect of business with a long-term scope.
2. VIRTUAL TRAINING TECHNOLOGY IS ABUNDANT AND EFFECTIVE
There is no shortage of software, platforms, and digital tools that can be used to implement employee training. If your organization is making the transition from in-person to virtual training, now is a good time to invest in some new technology–or, at least, re-assess the tools you currently use.
Sure, Powerpoint presentations can be delivered via Skype and Zoom to provide real-time digital training. Your organization can also independently record instructional videos that are routinely shown to employees. Organizations have used these tools for years now–decades, in some cases. But today, there is a wealth of new technology at our disposal that is much more accessible, engaging and effective.
The undisputed star of the virtual training world is the Learning Management System (LMS). If the term LMS rings a bell, it’s likely because they’ve skyrocketed in popularity in recent years. These digital instruction platforms are all the buzz for good reason.
A Learning Management System (LMS) is a digital platform that facilitates the delivery, implementation, and administration of online learning. It centralizes all aspects of training onto a single software, and delivers instruction in innovative and interactive ways.
LMS training programs allow employees to access training anytime, anywhere. They are the, therefore, the perfect tool for a company looking to increase workplace flexibility. In addition, LMS platforms offer the possibility of uniformity and consistency across training sessions.
LMS programs also easily lend themselves to high-volume training. Because they centralize and store all training materials, they can be easily deployed to train a virtually limitless number of employees at a comparatively low cost. LMS programs are the absolute cutting-edge virtual workforce investments. However, it can be difficult to know which program is right for your business, and learning management system implementation requires extensive planning. If you’re interested in LMS training but don’t know where to start, check out our article, How to Pick the Best LMS System: 7 Expert Tips.
3. IT IS POSSIBLE TO MAINTAIN COMPANY CULTURE IN REMOTE TRAINING
Successful businesses understand the importance of company culture. Remote training does not have to hamper your organization’s ability to foster and maintain a workplace culture. In fact, it can actually increase buy-in and promote employee engagement!
When was the last time your training materials went under a microscope? A training revamp can ensure that your company’s vision and goals are thoughtfully weaved into your instructional design.
The in-person-to-remote transition can also give you the opportunity to re-evaluate the overall efficacy of your training materials. Moreover, because digital training interfaces store, standardize, and integrate learning materials, they can be easily deployed on a regular basis.
This could allow your business to provide higher-quality training more frequently and to more employees – at a lower cost than in-person training. This is key to nurturing corporate culture in the work-from-home era. Stronger (and more plentiful!) training materials reinforce knowledge and build competencies. Talent development, in turn, fuels engagement and promotes a culture of continuous improvement.
What is more, digital tools like LMS training platforms can improve retention through evidence-based instruction methods. They can also assess employee performance as a function of training. Therefore, if you thoroughly select, test, and audit your LMS platform, it can work in tandem with your company’s messaging to support and even enhance workplace culture.
The transition to remote training has been a long time coming. Some businesses have wholeheartedly embraced e-learning, while others have been begrudgingly dragged down the innovation curve as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Whether your business has been delivering virtual training for years, or you’re just thinking about how to roll out a training program, these are the most important things to know about remote training in 2020.
RTG Solutions Group can guide and consult you through this momentous change in day-to-day operations. Contact us today to consult with our learning and development experts!