Opinions expressed by entrepreneur contributors are their own.
Since the beginning of time, there have been methods for training employees to perform new or unfamiliar tasks. From facilitating mentoring among highly competent peers and other employees to developing user manuals for technical skills, most companies already have the resources needed to train their workforce.
But the question arises: Why are companies now choosing to develop new age training programs at work?
Adaptability is essential in the modern business world. New platforms, markets and technologies seem to emerge every quarter, making any new venture risky because the environment is susceptible to change at any moment.
The increase in the number of employees working remotely or through a hybrid model has necessitated these rapid changes in the workplace and in the industry. Even if a company can adjust its goals and strategy to accommodate these changes, it is an entirely different challenge to ensure that its employees have the necessary skills to adapt rapidly.
Related: 6 Ways to Keep Your Employees Learning on the Job
How are companies using technology to create innovative workplace training programs?
Companies incorporate technology into training programs in a variety of ways. Three of the most innovative include:
Opening future-oriented education to all:
Providing free online training is part of a larger movement to make information readily available and empower individuals to determine their own future. From Khan Academy to YouTube tutorials, it’s clear that the Internet is revolutionizing education, especially skill-based education.
Companies have noticed this change. They have started offering skill based training programs to talented individuals outside the organization.
TheSoul Publishing is an example of a company that has previously opened up its on-the-job training programs to provide educational experiences for all. It transformed its in-house Boost Academy into three future-focused camps open to the public. This allowed TheSoul to offer practical training methods that have helped individuals learn skills such as social media management, animation and video production.
Inclusive Training uses the power of next-generation technology to develop human-centered job training programs. They are individualized and do not assume that all employees learn in the same way and at the same pace.
Immersive technologies combine the physical and digital worlds, including virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). This technology augments elements of more effective forms of on-the-job training, such as gamified online platforms and demonstration videos that target specific skills.
Additionally, VR and AR experiences increase employee engagement to new heights. Employees participate in a practical and hands-on way by manipulating objects in a digital environment. Thus, employees can perform tasks independently while being allowed to make mistakes from which they can learn and improve their skills.
A 700-page training manual with a table of contents of miles may be exhaustive, but it is not attractive to employees.
Another complication is that it’s becoming increasingly common for new employees to be brought on board without ever setting foot in a company’s office—if the company even has a physical office space. Companies are beginning to reintegrate employees in response to the rapid technological change occurring in all industries to ensure that they can use the new technologies they have implemented.
Companies can make training significantly more engaging, exciting and digestible by leveraging the dynamic and integrated nature of the latest tools. Employers can ensure that employees are truly absorbing and contextualizing content by incorporating fun and informative videos and games into their programs.
Related: Gamified Training: A foolproof way to engage employees
How job training programs can benefit from new technologies
Workforces are becoming increasingly flexible:
New technology allows more effective training programs to be implemented throughout the company. Digital methods for upskilling employees are significantly less expensive than traditional methods before the pandemic.
A workforce can become flexible and adaptable to whatever the business world throws at it if training is facilitated at the level of the individual employee and the entire organization.
When you have well-trained employees, the “that’s not really part of my job” attitude will disappear. Although you don’t have to train every employee to do everything, training can expand an employee’s skills beyond the minimum requirements of their initial role. When it comes to unfamiliar tasks, the “can’t do” philosophy disappears. Instead, employees ask, “Where can I learn how to do this?”
Then a new issue arises: Employees ask themselves, “Will my boss be upset if I take the time to educate myself?” Therefore, companies should foster an environment in which employees are encouraged and empowered to attend additional on-the-job training so that employees feel comfortable in acquiring new skills. It produces long-term benefits for both the employer and the employee.
Assessing progress is simplified:
When it comes to ensuring employees understand complex technical procedures, adhere to essential guidelines, and adhere to health and safety protocols, companies must do more than simply provide lengthy documents and assume employees will comply. all information.
This information must be thoroughly assimilated. Companies need to determine if employees have fully understood the topic. Using the adaptability of technology, companies can assess an employee’s progress in real time using multimedia tools such as games, quizzes and videos. The company can then determine if the on-the-job training was effective or if modifications are required.
Related: Where to deploy innovative technology to create a more flexible and attractive organization
Employers should adopt the philosophy that if you continue to train, learn and develop your employees, you will always have the most qualified candidates in the roles – this is particularly useful if the company’s industry makes it challenging to recruit qualified workers.
On the other hand, this kind of philosophy is also attractive to potential employees who not only want to get paid, but also want to develop their skill sets through the on-the-job training opportunities the company offers. Improving and expanding access to skills-based training will always benefit both employers and employees.