Offering an online training course does not guarantee that employees will complete it. They probably have no more interest in spending hours staring at a computer screen than they do in visiting the dentist for a root canal. The pain may not seem worth the result to the employee. Once they start a course, many problems could pull or push them away before they finish. The real challenge lies in getting them back and keeping them excited using online training solutions.
Interruptions and Cancellations
Before deciding to make any changes to your training program, you need to identify the types of problems that affect employees. In our blog post Why Employees Don’t Complete Their Online Training Courses we lay out several of the most common problems. These include:
Lack of Motivation
Poor Course Design
Meeting Each Challenge
Different issues require different online training solutions. Consider each of these problems individually before pointing the finger at your online course.
- Time Constraints. When employees feel that they do not have enough time to complete a training course, the problem is usually a top down issue. Why should employees prioritize the course if management does not? Be clear about the reasons why a course is important and build time in to every employee’s schedule for necessary training.
- Lack of Motivation. If an employee does not understand the reasons behind a specific course, they may not dedicate the time and attention necessary for success. For every course summarize in the training management software what employees can expect to learn and how it will help them in their daily job performance. If a course is mandatory, like many OSHA safety courses or continuing education requirements, be sure that employees know it is not optional. Success at the course ensures continued employment, in these cases. That should help improve motivation for tackling coursework.
- Provide Support. Support points right back to management. When an employee needs training to complete tasks, management must make that training available. No employee should feel penalized or marginalized for taking the time to complete training. Create systems that automate training processes, removing any negatives associated with continuing education or internal process changes.
- Work with IT. Technology issues crop up. Be sure to have flexible scheduling to allow employees more than one opportunity to attend a training course. It is also a good idea to test systems before asking employees to come in for training. Even with testing, sometimes networks stop working, causing delays and failures beyond the employee’s control. Track these issues to be sure that the problems are correctly attributed to technology failures, rather than the courses.
- Design more Engaging Courses. If all systems are go, and you still have serious performance issues, taking a look at the training itself. Non-engaging training material leaves room for boredom and distraction. Assess your current courses to be sure that the material is presented in the best and most energetic way. Utilize multimedia materials to keep employees excited and think about creating instructional videos. The more ways the information is presented, the more likely it is that each employee will actively absorb the information.
Tools for Training
Online training solutions can range from implementing different training programs to better tracking and support for employees. Automation tools help provide some of the needed support, and can also build in time for courses. Automating class scheduling ensures that needed employees receive training, and time is made in their work schedules to accommodate them. To improve motivation, consider adding some type of recognition programs. Those that complete training timely may be eligible for a prize or be posted on a recognition list. Hosting a breakfast for trainees may also be a great way to address that issue.
Prioritizing training is the single biggest way to improve completion rates for employees. Online training solutions that address implementation help, but ultimately, to improve completion, work with management to ensure that training comes first. This includes on-boarding information, policy changes and continuing education and certifications.
To learn more about how you can create online training that not only gets results but gets completed, download our free ebook Learn How To Create Performance Based Elearning.