As more businesses opt to continue managing remote teams or develop a hybrid schedule, the need for efficient employee training increases. Company executives and department heads must develop a strategy to effectively educate new and existing staff on everything from policy and procedure updates to using technological software and applications. Since everyone’s not under the same roof, using traditional training methods isn’t appropriate.
Fortunately, there are methods companies can use to ensure that their remote and in-person teams get the training they need.
Let’s start by evaluating the common issues with training remote teams. That way, you can develop an effective plan that prevents or reduces the obstacles for your staff.
Supervision – It’s kind of hard to determine if an employee is completing the training and comprehending the information if you’re not there to witness it yourself. Not to mention, there’s always the chance that an employee just skims the information or breezes through a video to complete the training. With everyone working from their home, trainers lose some level of control and the ability to identify employees that need assistance.
Distractions – Everyone can admit that working from home comes with a lot of distractions. Everything from the kids and pets to the doorbell and television can throw you off course. Unfortunately, there’s no way for trainers to eliminate distractions that can slow progress and reduce comprehension levels.
Technical Difficulties – Another major problem with training remote employees is technical difficulties. Everyone is working from different devices using a variety of internet services. Something as simple as the internet lagging or the software not being compatible could throw the entire training session off.
So, how do you create an effective training strategy to keep both remote and in-person employees on the same page? There’s more than one approach to consider, but here are some basic instructions to get you started.
Blended Learning – Your employees learn and comprehend things in different ways. Ultimately, you need to come up with a blended learning strategy. This is a concept in which you offer training that is both synchronous and asynchronous (group sessions where training is live and interactions are in real-time combined with options for self-learning at the user’s preferred pace.)
Sound Content – Whether you’re creating onboarding training for new employees or teaching your marketing team how to use new software, you need helpful content. You have to ultimately make manuals, guides, instructions, and modules that take complicated concepts and relay them in a way your employees can understand. And try to find a solid, simple to use, standardized software solution; if you’re a law firm, look for a complete law firm CRM package, and if you’re an accounting firm, look for one created specifically for accounting firms. In addition to alleviating complex workarounds to make a general-purpose solution meet the demands of your industry, these specialized solutions will most likely come with high-quality training materials.
Engage Employees – You may not be able to control your employee’s work environment or distractions, but you can ensure they get trained effectively by keeping them engaged. You can stream live lectures, encourage interaction through chat platforms, offer incentives, or even provide a certification of completion, which can be beneficial for future promotions. It also doesn’t hurt to ensure that you select a trainer with good people skills to keep everyone entertained.
Accessibility – Whatever platforms you plan to use for training your remote teams, ensure that it’s easily accessible. Opt for cloud-based software and applications to reduce the chances of technical difficulties. You should also provide proper instructions on how to access the materials in advance.
Offer Support – Online training isn’t always easy. While some employees will excel, others may have a difficult time keeping up. You can ensure that everyone is on the same page by offering various methods of support. Have the trainer provide a phone number or email for any questions or concerns, allow employees to work in small groups or pairs, and offer additional sessions for those who need more time.
There are many advantages to managing a remote workforce. If you have decided that a virtual or hybrid business setting is best for your company, you’ll need to develop an effective training strategy to keep your team up-to-date. Although there are some obstacles in training a remote or hybrid team, they can easily be overcome by using the suggestions provided above.