The main objective of your training should help be to enable your employees or customers to achieve their full potential. But the way to achieve that objective is changing, just as the world of work is evolving to meet the needs of Millennials and Gen Z.
In the past, instructor-led training made sense, and in some scenarios it still does, such as if you’re handling sensitive material or taking a more consultative approach to training. Now, self-paced training, for the most part, can deliver the learning results and learning experience that most training teams want.
Below we’ll dive into one of the major benefits that self-paced training delivers: efficiency.
Easily Adapt and Personalize Training
Self-paced training helps you deliver content that works for different learning styles. We’re now used to accessing content on demand (thanks to Netflix!), rather than on a fixed schedule; with self-paced training, users can learn at a time and pace that best fits with their work responsibilities and their learning style.
When you deliver instructor-led training, it normally follows a one-and-done approach; companies assume that learners are fully up to speed with the topic after the session. Learners also often end up at training sessions that have nothing to do with their role.
With self-paced training, learners can revisit the content as often as they like for it to fully sink in. If they find a particular module difficult, they can spend more time on it. If they find other modules easy or not relevant to their role, they can speed through them or skip them altogether. With instructor-led training, revisiting, spending more time, or skipping course materials is not possible — students have to sit through the entire course with little flexibility available.
Instead of taking a one-size-fits-all approach, you can create personalized learning paths that are tailored around specific roles, product features, or career paths. This is a research-backed approach, as Gen Z highly values learning that is personalized to their role and career goals. This makes training more effective as users fully engage with the content.
Save Time With Scalable and Reusable Content
Instructor led training is hard to scale and fit into everyone’s schedules. For example, if you or one of your customers needs to attend an instructor-led training session, they have to wait for the next instructor-led session before they can receive training. Now imagine if a new hire is made (or a new customer is onboarded) the day after a monthly, instructor-led session is completed. That’s a 1 month wait before the new hire or customer can take the next instructor-led course.
When you deliver self-paced training, once you’ve created the content, you can easily scale and reuse it and then deliver it to an unlimited number of users who can learn at their own pace. You can quickly make changes to content yourself in a few clicks rather than having to brief instructors to change their PowerPoint presentations. Your courses are delivered when your learners need them and helps to reduce the costs associated with ongoing course updates.
Improve Completion Rates By Monitoring Performance
One of the benefits that we often hear people talking about when it comes to instructor-led training is that you know which people have completed the modules. But it’s also easy to measure completion rate with self-paced training, particularly with business intelligence tools such as Appsembler Figures.
When you deliver an instructor-led course, completion often simply refers to an employee or customer having attended the training. With self-paced training, you can actually track which modules each learner has completed, as well as how much time they spent on each course. If you add interactive content such as quizzes at the end of each module, you can also track whether they have engaged with the content rather than speeding through it just to complete it.
You can also work out which courses and modules are most popular and useful by measuring enrollment rates and drop-off rates. As you can access individual learner’s metrics, you are able to easily identify any users who aren’t progressing through the course and who need additional support to complete the training.
Having access to these metrics allows you to optimize your course by improving areas where learners are struggling or further developing popular courses. Regularly making improvements helps you to keep content fresh and relevant and boosts enrollment, engagement, and completion. You can also use this data to make a business case for extending and expanding your most successful courses, or as a place where you can go to identify additional courses you should build.
Better Use of Time and Resources
Learners often face technical challenges when receiving software training, spending valuable time in the session setting up computers, downloading programs. They may also come up against firewalls and restrictions of privileges, which means that learners aren’t able to get hands-on software experience they need, and have to unfortunately learn from watching PowerPoint slides or videos. (Imagine learning how to fish with photos!)
With self-paced training, learners can launch hands-on software environments directly from their browser without having to install software. They can launch the software environment wherever they are, with whatever Internet browser they prefer, and log into an immersive software learning experience.
As Millennials and Gen Z are used to working things out themselves and are generally tech-savvy, this provides the same kind of learning experience they have in their personal lives. This not only boosts learner satisfaction and curriculum retention, but also makes them more likely to engage with the training.
Transform Your Learning Experience
When you pair self-paced training with an interactive learning experience (called virtual training labs) then you’re putting yourself in a position to develop more effective and scalable software training courses that will better engage users and make the most of your training budget.