When you implement online training solutions, you want to see results. If employees complete training and still show the same performance levels, something needs to change, right? The temptation is to blame the training program. According to a study by the American Society of Training and Development (ASTD), 70 percent of training failures occurred after the end of the training program, This means that most employees learned the information during training; it is on-the-job that the information is lost.
70% of training failures occurred after the end of the training program
Before restructuring your training program, take a look at the most common reasons why employees fail to improve performance after training.
Lack of practice
No matter how engaging and informative your online training solutions are, when employees never practice learned skills, they quickly forget. If you want real results from training, be sure to include many opportunities for employees to practice their new skills.
No supervised training
With a high percentage of skills lost between the training program and the work floor, practice is a critical component of training success. While using skills helps employees cement the information, they may not be immediate experts. Offering regular follow-up and practice opportunities with a skilled supervisor gives your employees the best chance to gain, and keep, new skills.
Poor preparation for training courses
Training programs often have a very accelerated pace. This can leave some employees struggling to keep up. In fact, 20 percent of training failures can be linked to poor preparation. Provide employees with information about the training ahead of time, allowing them to study up and start training with confidence.
No post-training evaluations
At the end of every training course, you should be tracking how well employees absorbed the presented information. This could come in the form of an exit exam or a skills demonstration at work. No matter how you track performance, it is important to ensure that every employee actually absorbed the information presented. Continue with evaluations over a period of time. Employees retain the most directly after the course. Perform follow-up evaluations on a regular schedule, so you can track who has retained the information and who might need a refresher.
Haphazard training schedules
When you only train half your workforce, you only see half the results. Your untrained staff may wind up negatively impacting your trained staff. After all, they will continue to reinforce the bad habits you started a training program to get rid of. If everyone receives the same training, each employee can turn to a peer for assistance with something they have forgotten or failed to understand.
Unclear guidance and expectations
Employees perform best when they have clear goals. Before sending any employee into training, let them know what you expect them to learn and how it will apply to their job performance. This will allow employees to focus on training with practical applications in mind. Training management solutions help deliver the courses, but it is up to management to ensure employees are committed to performing well.
Poorly designed training program
Although most learning failures are unrelated to training, it is still a good idea to take a look at the way information is presented. A dry lecture or hours spent reading long blocks of text probably will not engage your employees in anything but a nice nap. Make sure information is presented using a combination of verbal, written, graphic and video, for the best performance results.
After you identify the problem area for your training program, there are a variety of online training solutions that can help you restructure. Implementing automated reminders for post-training practice, evaluations and supervised practice time allows you to maximize the benefits of every training course. Sending out information packets before every course also improves responses. No training program creates instant experts, but if you approach things with the understanding that training is a process, you will see consistent results. Use the repeating cycle of prepare, implement, follow-up and assess for your training program.
To learn more about the what you can do to deliver the best online training, download our free ebook How To Avoid Elearning Failures.
Image Credit: Mr. T in DC