by Unboxed Staff | April 20, 2020 | 5 Min Read

Virtual Training and The New Normal

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In the wake of COVID-19, some businesses and organizations have already shuttered their operations. Others are likely scrambling to get employees up and running online with virtual corporate training and collaboration solutions.

It would be a huge mistake to consider our current state of business in this time of the Coronavirus as merely a moment in time. Rather, we’re likely experiencing a watershed moment. A critical turning point. A crossing of the Rubicon.

Those anxious for things to get back to normal may instead have to adjust to a new normal, whatever that may be.

So what is the new normal?

Change is the New Normal

The way we all show up to work and relate to one another over the last few weeks has drastically changed and will continue to change.

Speaking of which, do you have a change enablement process in place?

As L&D professionals, we’re looking to evolve and adapt to meet the needs of a global workforce in the midst of a pandemic. As a result, many of our partners have asked us how to create more virtual corporate training solutions—quickly.

And while we have some ideas, we’d like to go one step further and declare that every organization should develop a long-term strategy for online employee training.

Here’s why.

Your Organization Needs a Back-Up Plan

It’s true. The last few weeks have proven that every organization needs a backup plan. So, as you’re developing your short-term solution to maintain team productivity, have one eye toward a sustainable future.

Companies that were prepared to go virtual for times like these are up and running with relative ease. Less prepared companies feel like they’re duct-taping and bubble-gumming solutions for learners and employees. Which of these do you relate more to?

To become more like the former company, look at your current solution and ask the following questions:

  • What kinks or bugs need to be worked out?
  • What are we doing now that’s working well?
    • What’s not working well?
  • If we had to, for whatever reason, work remotely again in the future, could we easily and confidently transition to a virtual space?
  • Do we need to invest in new technologies?
  • What training can easily be transitioned from in-person to virtual or eLearning?

Answering these questions, and being honest about the answers, will help you understand your company’s current capabilities and how you can adapt for the future.

Benefits of Virtual Corporate Training for Learners

The truth is, virtual training increases productivity and speed to competency. The employee benefits of virtual training show that learning is:

  • Self-directed
  • Personalized
  • Measurable
  • Engaging
  • Effective

You don’t have to take our word for it. Just look at the data. A Brandon Hall Group survey from 2017 reports that virtual learning can reduce employee training time by 40-60% and boost knowledge retention by 25-60%. According to a Karpicke and Blunt study, when you pair active learning via self-paced modalities, with collaborative learning, retention can increase by 146%.

If you want to learn more about virtual instructor-led training best practices and digital training in general, check out:

By converting certain types of training into a virtual environment, you’ll create a sustainable and repeatable framework. This will allow your team members to become better at their jobs in less time.

Virtual Training Benefits Your Future Employees

Over half of the current workforce consists of digital natives. Millennials and GenZ cut their teeth on the internet and social media. They are used to being in the driver’s seat when it comes to knowledge, information, and learning in general.

According to studies from the Training Journal, Millennials value skills acquisition and career enhancement opportunities most in jobs. Gallup and Forbes report that a significant percentage of Millennial and GenZ workers plan to change jobs this year for learning and growth opportunities.

It’s crucial to provide quick access, on-demand virtual solutions for employees. Solutions that will allow you not only to meet current business needs, but proactively transform employee development to support the next wave of the workforce.

Virtual Training Saves Resources

Pandemic or no pandemic, organizations are always looking for an opportunity to save expenses. Unfortunately, L&D budgets are often the first to be cut.

So why not invest in virtual? According to IBM, organizations earn $30 in productivity for every dollar invested in eLearning. How’s that for Kirkpatrick Level 4 data?

We know first-hand that Virtual Instructor-Led Training (VILT) can cost up to 70% less than in-person training (Training Industry). By simply reducing a three-day instructor-led training by one day and converting that content to multiple, blended, and digital modalities, we were able to create a sustainable training module and reduce the overall expenses of execution by $84,000 for one of our partners.

Monetary resources aren’t the only thing virtual training preserves. It’s environmentally friendly, to boot! Figures from an Open University study show how eLearning reduces energy consumption by 90% and CO2 emissions by more than 85% (Design Innovation Group).

Do your company (and the planet) a favor — create a virtual training environment. Your budget and employees will thank you.

Need Help Getting There?

We know how it feels to have a team of work-from-home warriors. And we know you’re doing all you can to equip them with the tools they need to get the job done. Chances are, you’re already in the midst of moving to virtual corporate training right now.

Prepare for the new normal by partnering with Unboxed Training & Technology. Think of our team as a lifeline to help you build out a more sustainable and long-term strategy. We’re pros at corporate training strategy and it’s what we love. Get in touch with our team to serve your team, today.

Take this opportunity to ask for advice from an industry expert about the best practices and potential pitfalls about transitioning to virtual training.

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