Affordable eLearning Options a Click A0way
Find online training that best suits your business and budget
It’s estimated that small and mid-sized U.S. companies spend, on average, more than $69,000 on outsourced training services. The skills gap is widening as digital transformation and automation become more commonplace in organizations of every size, and as older workers retire while younger generations take their place. That has made employee development initiatives and corporate training programs a necessity in a time when training dollars might not be readily available.
After suffering several economic setbacks throughout 2020, very few small or mid-sized organizations have tens of thousands of dollars to invest in employee “upskilling.” Luckily, online and virtual training options abound. A vast array of eLearning content is available online—how-to videos, eBooks, blogs, webinars—making it easier than ever to find affordable content you can use to curate a more robust employee development training program.
Exploring your online options
When considering how to incorporate eLearning into your company’s employee training program or initiatives, you should start by identifying what kind of scale you want your program to have, as well as how much control you want to have in terms of assigning training and tracking progress. Are you looking for resources that employees can use for one-off training as needed on their own? Or are you looking for a platform that will allow you to assign and track the progress of professional development across your entire company?
If you fall into the first category of wanting to create a more hands-off approach to employee training, there are a variety of free and inexpensive online platforms available to meet your needs such as YouTube videos, TED Talks, industry association webinars, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) from top universities, and even low-cost subscription services like LinkedIn Learning (formerly Lynda.com) that provide tutorials on how to do almost anything. Most organizations that offer specialized services will also have free webinars recorded and archived on their websites. For example, G&A Partners offers several years’ worth of educational webinars covering important HR and compliance topics.
If you’re looking for more of a systematic and formal approach to employee training and development, you should consider investing in a Learning Management System (LMS) that allows you to assign, track, and report on employees’ learning and professional development progress. LMS applications typically have established partnerships with content publishers and therefore include access to hundreds or thousands of training videos and programs. Many also allow companies to upload their own custom content.
What to look for in an LMS
When hunting for the best LMS for your organization, don’t be swayed by a fancy interface or media write-up. Not all LMS providers are created equal. If you want to get the most bang for your buck with your LMS, look for the following:
- Is the content mobile friendly? Not all employees have easy access to a desktop computer and will appreciate having the freedom to access content across multiple devices, including tablets and smartphones. You should also ensure your chosen LMS is accessible on both Macs and PCs to guarantee that every employee can take the training.
- What kind of assessment features are available? It’s not enough to know that an employee simply watched or clicked through training. You need to ensure employees are truly engaged with the training content, so finding an LMS with some sort of assessment feature is critical. It should offer a simple questionnaire, a short quiz, or an end-of-course exam to verify that the lesson was learned.
- Is there any certification or licensing programs available? While a course on effective listening and communication techniques has value, courses that offer tangible benefits like certifications or licenses upon completion often provide considerably more value for both employees and employers. Receiving a digital certificate is often a source of pride for the trainee and may provide positive social media recognition that reflects well on the trainee employee and the organization that goes the extra mile to educate its employees.
- Is the program easy to use? In order to ensure your company gets the highest adoption rate amongst employees, your LMS needs to be easy to use and navigate.
- What kind of reporting features does the program offer? Measurable results are often the most important aspect of any human capital management technology. Before making your selection, ensure that you’re going to be able to run the kind of reports you’ll need to track individual performance, company performance, usage, and any other metrics or goals you have for your employee development training program.
Encouragement and engagement are essential
Employee satisfaction and engagement are critical to building and maintaining a strong performing company. Nothing is more fundamental to generating feelings of satisfaction and engagement than providing your employees with opportunities for professional development.
Employee development training programs and a plethora of online learning opportunities available on the Web offer those development opportunities. Whatever training you opt to provide, be sure to get buy-in from your leadership team. In order to be successful, you’ll need your leaders on the same page and ready to reinforce the messaging. Your employees will feel more confident when their training is encouraged, celebrated, and acknowledged by their leaders.
G&A Partners has a successful track record of providing scalable technology solutions, including a comprehensive Learning Management System, that meets clients’ organizational needs as well as the individual needs of their employees. Learn how we can help you train and develop your employees by calling 866-634-6713 to speak with an expert or schedule a free consultation today.