How do you motivate employees to complete online training?
Imagine this: Your manager mentions during a team meeting that some new eLearning courses will be rolled out shortly. Even those already proficient in the skills taught will need to complete it as refresher training. What is your reaction? Would you have to stifle an eye roll, or would you get excited at the learning opportunity?
Your level of enthusiasm could depend on a range of things, from the country you live in to the specific factors that motivate you as an individual. In fact, Education First’s latest global research report entitled “Decoding motivation: Global insight into motivational drivers of corporate training” found big differences between countries and their willingness to undertake corporate training. Reportedly, 62 percent of respondents in Brazil and 60 percent in China say employees are very willing to undertake training. This drops dramatically in European countries with Sweden, the UK, and France all coming in at 38%. Interesting stuff.
What this tells us is that when it comes to online training, a one-size-fits-all approach isn’t going to cut it. To truly motivate employees and engage them to take eLearning courses, we need to be able to allow them to be active in the experience.
Here are 5 top tips from PulseLearning to help motivate employees to complete eLearning courses.
- Emphasize the “what’s in it for me?” and on-the-job application.
Presenting the “what’s in it for me? (WIIFM)” is effective in gaining audience buy-in. To be motivated, employees need to know the real world benefits of the eLearning courses – in particular, how the training relates to them in their daily roles. Present clear learning objectives at the start of the training and reference these throughout. Using scenarios and case studies can be a great way to link content to on-the-job application. You can also provide learners with a set of take-away tools such as job aids or quick-reference guides.
- Link to skill development and career pathways.
A recent global study revealed that 66% of employees say opportunities for professional growth are limited within their organizations. Cultivate a learning culture within your organization and communicate the professional development benefits of completing training. Send out emails or post on your intranet about upcoming training, the benefits, and how it can help transition employees into other roles within the company.
- Make use of effective interactivity and creative devices.
So you’ve inspired your employees about the upcoming training. What you don’t want is your team of motivated employees sitting down to dull, boring eLearning courses. To maintain training motivation, you need to deliver quality eLearning. Effective training presents new skills and knowledge in exciting and engaging formats, which can include videos, podcasts, graphic narratives, and multiple-branching scenarios. Use a variety of mediums and interactivity that involve the learner to actively participate. Gamification, the use of game mechanics in online training, can rouse some healthy competition among learners.
- Offer opportunities to assess and reflect on what has been learned.
You might not initially see a test as a motivating factor; however, assessment tools allow learners to determine how much they have learned. When we do well, we feel good about ourselves and get excited that we have learned new skills. You might include interspersed formative self-reflection activities and learning checks and a summative assessment at the end of the training, if appropriate.
- Put your learners in control with BYOD and mobile learning.
Allow your learners to complete eLearning courses when and where it suits them, on the devices they enjoy using the most. eLearning courses can be designed for access on desktop computers, tablets, and smart phones. If your organization allows employees to “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD), training can be completed in a location where employee feels most comfortable.