If your business is transitioning training and orientation practices to online training and eLearning, you’ve probably done some research into how to keep learners engaged. One of the best ways to incorporate information in an easy-to-digest, straightforward manner is to incorporate videos in your eLearning. This is especially important for how-to demonstrations, as well as illustrating complex processes and procedures. At the same time, it’s important to use videos wisely so that users don’t tune out if they are long and boring.
Best Practices for Including Videos in eLearning
Here are 5 Best Practices for Including Videos in eLearning to help you get started.
1. Do your homework
Putting together videos for training and eLearning modules can be expensive, so be sure that you’ve researched and developed a strategy before you begin. Start with an outline of the course content, key points, and where in the course you feel videos are appropriate for enhancing information retention. When you have an idea of what you want to do, think about your needs and your abilities. If you have someone on staff that can help you produce and publish training videos, that’s fantastic. Most small companies will need to hire a professional to help guide them through the process. If contacting a major production group is outside your budget, try sources like Gumtree to locate an affordable independent contractor to get the job done.
Make sure that everyone involved in the video production is working together as a team. Simply turning over a basic plan to the person creating the video will probably fail and end up costing more time and money in the end. From the beginning, have the input of the training manager, the department head for the target audience, and a few people that will be using the learning platform. This way, you will ensure that it meets the goals of the training objectives, presents the information in an easy-to-use way, and is produced appropriately.
3. Check your authoring platform
Before you begin any video recording, you need to make sure that the video format is compatible with the program you are using to create your eLearning content. Some platforms have video capabilities included in the program, others allow you to import videos, and some exclude adding videos. Make sure you don’t waste any time or money creating videos that you won’t be able to use. Also, some of the eLearning authoring programs have built-in programs that help you edit training videos and add music or other images and tools to make the content more engaging. You may wish to spend more for a program that incorporates video editing.
4. Make sure your videos are accessible
If your video is in an uncommon format or the format is incompatible with your company software, you’re going to have a hard time getting people to view it. In addition to making sure that your authoring platform is good to go, you also need to make sure that your audience can access it. Will they be logging in from home, watching on their desktops, or watching it in a group class? If you can, make sure that there is also a link to the video that they can access again if they need to. Also make sure that you aren’t using proprietary software such as Apple products; your learners may be trying to view the videos on an Android tablet or their home PC.
5. Have reasonable expectations
A well-produced video can certainly enhance the learning experience for your audience and motivate employees to engage with the eLearning content. At the same time, video production is not a simple matter of recording and pressing play when you’re done. It can take several hours and many hands to make just a few minutes of high-quality video. Many people begin this process without realizing the extent of the work involved in creating a well-rounded video or set of videos. Planning, scripting, lighting, sound, recording, editing, and rendering are just a few of the processes needed to create a video. Don’t be surprised if the video you want costs more than you budgeted for or if it takes longer than expected. Just remember that a well-produced video is worth the time and money you will invest.
Adding videos to your eLearning courses is a great way to ensure higher retention, more interactivity, and better understanding of the information being provided. You just need to be sure that you’re producing high-quality, engaging videos that will help your business meet its training objectives by relying on the tips outlined above.