Engage Your Remote Workforce Through eLearning
Thanks to technology, remote workforces have become an important part of the hiring landscape for growing companies. With the flexibility of this arrangement comes the challenge of keeping people feeling connected to the business regardless of their physical location. Training is a key element of the support infrastructure that enables workers to feel a part of the larger organization, keeping them engaged in the goals and objectives of the business. This means providing access to the same learning and online networking opportunities available to other employees - achievable through eLearning delivered via a Learning Management System (LMS)!
Given the initial costs associated with implementing an LMS, it’s important to know that content and courses delivered online have proven to be highly effective. For example, workers with on-demand access to tools and courses can reduce the time required to attain competency in needed skills while retaining up to 60% more information than with traditional training methods (The Research Institute of America, 2013). As a result, IBM has found that eLearning has the potential to increase productivity by up to 50 % and that for every $1 spent, the company estimates it will receive $30 worth of productivity.
Other reports and surveys are readily available, making the case for eLearning as part of an organization’s overall learning strategy. Here, we want to highlight why it is particularly suited to developing a remote workforce. Consider the following:
- Lower training costs. Producing learning content, whether for classroom or online delivery, is time consuming. With eLearning, your return on investment improves as fixed production costs are divided by number of uses, including access by remote workers. This remote access also reduces travel and printing costs as workers can log on to a training course from their own location and download learning materials onto their desktop or mobile device.
- Availability whenever, wherever. Learners can log on to courses when the time and place is convenient for them - at home, while commuting, or in their remote office.
- Consistency. eLearning allows you to create a standardized process and ensure consistency in the delivery of content and information to all employees regardless of location.
- Avoids learning overload. eLearning is self-paced. Content is most often delivered in ‘bite sized’ chunks that can be consumed in short bursts of activity, giving remote workers the flexibility to fit learning into their schedule when they can be most attentive and focused.
- Quick updates. eLearning makes it easy to reach remote workers and keep them up to date on products, changes to legislation, procedures, and other urgent information.
- On demand upskill training. Online learning makes it easy to upskill existing workers and to attract more workers, especially younger people.
- Instant tracking. An LMS will immediately track employee progress and testing of understanding. This is particularly important for the delivery of compliance training to remote workers.
An LMS does more than deliver content!
In addition to content and courses, eLearning delivered via LMS includes a variety of online technologies that can be leveraged to help remote workers establish relationships and build a connection with the organization. Chat capabilities for video calls enable face-to-face contact with peers. Creating an online community through discussion forums and blogs gives remote workers a place where they can find job-specific information, give and receive peer coaching, find information to answer their questions, and feel like they are part of the group.
The gamification capability of eLearning is another effective tool for bolstering communication and a sense of connection for remote workers. The ability to earn badges and points, and to track leaderboard rankings, involves them in competition and collaboration as a member of a team. This helps them feel as if they fit in and have a place within the company. Gamification can also help managers spot the potential strengths of a remote employee that might otherwise be overlooked.
The eLearning Solution
The challenge faced by organizations to involve and motivate remote workers is closely aligned with the need to provide them with training and learning opportunities. The right LMS and eLearning curriculum offer a practical solution for delivering courses and community-building platforms to help businesses develop and retain an informed and engaged remote workforce.