Microlearning and Microtraining Techniques for Success

Do you need to train your team fast? As in, “my people needed to be client-facing yesterday,” fast? Then microlearning is here to save the day! Learn about microlearning and microtraining techniques for success to take your employee training to the next level.

 

Microlearning Meaning

Microlearning, or “microtraining,” is the process of breaking down employee training into small, bite-sized pieces. The goal is to use short courses that are easy for employees to quickly learn and apply. And when I say short, I don’t mean 30 minutes—I mean 5 minutes or less. No more than one objective is focused on per training course.

In general, corporate training exists to equip employees with practical skills to complete job-related tasks and proactively train them for the future. Microlearning provides employees with applicable knowledge and skills based on their immediate needs. Think of these 5-minute videos as chunks of “micro knowledge.”

If a sales rep is constantly on the move, they may not think to carve out a whole hour, or even half an hour, for training. Using bite sized modules, training sessions are no longer time consuming, but concise.

Let’s talk about why you need to incorporate microtraining into your blended learning program today.

 

Why Microlearning?

Microlearning breaks down complex topics into specific, actionable objectives. We’ve discussed before how, in an age of distraction, the attention span of most people is less than a goldfish. Tragic that we’re losing to a glass-bowl-bound fish, but I digress. We can’t create more time, but we can use the time we do have more efficiently.

If you want to read about some microlearning examples in action, read about our partnership with NextWorth. We helped them develop bite sized training videos and accomplish a double-digit increase in used, electronic trade-in accuracy.

In a previous blog, we listed some of the primary benefits of e learning. Now, it’s time to dive into why microtraining is such an impactful tool by exploring the benefits of microlearning.

Benefits of Microlearning

 

1. Mobile Access

With the digital age comes a wealth of opportunity and modes of communication. Microtraining uses a variety of modalities to communicate new material to employees on different devices. The mobility makes microlearning exceptionally effective. Employees are empowered to access training wherever they are, whenever they can—before a meeting, waiting for the bus, or in between phone calls. Training has never been so accessible and agile.

2. Limited Distractions

Technology is a catch 22—mobility is no doubt a significant strength, but it can also be a major weakness. Smartphones are one of the biggest productivity killers in the workplace according to a study by Careerbuilder. But, we have good news! Since microtraining only takes minutes to complete, there is less time for distraction. Think of all of the notifications you typically receive in 30-minutes vs 5-minutes. Laser-focused microlearning courses keep employees both concentrated and engaged.

3. Higher Engagement

Did you know that 65% of people learn best by watching? Even marketing experts use micro-videos in digital advertisements because they are more engaging. The same reasoning applies to employee training. Guo, Kim, & Rubin’s research shows that shorter videos are statistically more engaging than longer ones. They recommend segmenting longer learning videos into shorter chunks (less than 6 minutes). In fact, the shortest videos (0-3 minutes) resulted in the highest engagement. Sound familiar? That’s microlearning at it’s finest.

4. Just-in-time Learning

One of the primary advantages of microlearning is that learners can complete courses “just-in-time” without a moment’s notice. Employees are able to train on just what they need to know, right when they need it most. The benefits of microlearning for sales training are compelling. The just-in-time training provided by microlearning is particularly beneficial for the busy sales rep. They can easily start a new course and receive comprehensive knowledge minutes before a pitch or call.

5. Actionable Content

Microlearning fosters behavioral changes, as all learning should, with immediate application. Whether an employee faces a challenge in or out of the office, microtraining provides them with the necessary resources they need in a pinch. In addition, microlearning is personalized for a custom learner experience. A unique course path provides a more efficient training, so learners are ready to go, right after they complete it.

In short, start using bite sized learning to better inform and apply employees’ learning and development initiatives at work. Listen to our webinar, 25 training tips in 25 minutes, for a mix of training techniques.

 

Ready, Set, Train

At Unboxed Training and Technology, we developed ReadySet—an off-the-shelf eLearning system for the modern learner. Streamline your employee training by narrowing in on one key skill with microlearning. ReadySet courses are challenging enough to engage employees but short enough to support retention.

Use ReadySet as a just-in-time training for new employees, or equip your current employee with action-oriented course content.  Contact us to learn more about microlearning and microtraining techniques for success—ReadySet Sell, Lead, Secure, or Respect and adopt microlearning today!

2020 training trends webinar

The start of every new year is a chance to revisit training goals and aspirations for the coming 12 months. How do you know what’s worth your investment?

Share This Article

More Articles Like This One

Benefits of e Learning

The benefits of e Learning extend far past the desk of your employees. Learn why eLearning is an essential tool to train your organization’s modern learner in today’s fast-paced, digital work environment.

Traditional training methods, like classroom training, have their place in a blended training program. However, they can be expensive and time-consuming. The cost and logistics that go into organizing a face to face training add up: instructors, venue, learning material, etc.

Alternatively, eLearning provides a variety of training modalities that are both cost effective and mobile.

Let’s start with the definition before jumping into the data.

 

What is eLearning?

The eLearning definition, short for “electronic learning,” is any type of learning or training material that can be consumed digitally:

Online training provides significant flexibility considering the state of the modern learner. Even this blog is classified as a form of eLearning! At the same time you’re reading this content, you’re probably also writing an email, responding to a Slack from a coworker, prepping for a meeting, mentally responding to new text messages, and thinking about lunch.

Bombarded with constant, digital communication via notifications, text messages, entertainment, etc.—distraction is the greatest downfall for modern learners. If harnessed properly, online learning can streamline and support employee training and management development.

 

eLearning Trends

As eLearning continues to grow, so does its spelling variations. If you’re interested in any form of digital learning, you might search the terms: “eLearning,” “e learning,” “e-learning,” etc. According to Google Trends, keeping the term as one word — “eLearning” — is the most searched spelling over the past year.

google eLearning trends comparison

To conclude this short point, there will likely always be a dispute around which spelling is correct (especially among SEO experts). However you decide to spell it, using eLearning for employees is what matters most for your business.

At this point, you’re probably thinking, “Great, so a lot of people search for “eLearning” on Google. But why invest in eLearning? What makes it effective?”

Well, we’re glad you asked.

 

Why Invest in eLearning?

Global Market Insights, Inc. reports that the global eLearning market is projected to reach $300 billion by 2025. More and more businesses are investing in eLearning—not because it’s a trend—but because the benefits of e learning have proven results.

Mark Van Buren, director of research for ASTD, tells HR Magazine: “It is clear that a firm’s commitment to workplace learning is directly linked to its bottom line.” Not only do profits increase when eLearning becomes a priority, but so does efficiency and employee retention.

Benefits of e Learning

 

1. Improve Profits.

Industry data suggests that when employers invest $1,595 per employee each year on training, gross profit margins improve by 24%. Now that’s a statistic to take back to the boss! Every good investment produces an ROI to prove itself as a viable business endeavor.

2. Reduce Training Time.

A study conducted by the Brandon-Hall Group reports that eLearning significantly reduces training time compared to classroom learning—40-60% less time actually.

3. Increase Retention Rates.

eLearning can increase retention rates by up to 60%, compared to traditional training methods, which only boast a small 10% increase (The Research Institute of America).

 

When to Use eLearning

The corporate learning and development space is evolving every year with new technology and advancements. For instance, retraining employees will become just as important as onboarding new hires as a result of automation and AI.

Think of your opportunity cost—is it a better use of time and resources to rally employees together for in-person training (i.e. fly in remote workers, book a venue, pay an in-person trainer, print out all of the learning material, etc.)? Or, is it better to task everyone with completing the same training via a learning management system, then take a learning assessment once it’s complete, so everyone can get back to work?

At this point, when to use eLearning might be self-explanatory—ASAP—but here are a few use cases that may prompt your organization to start using eLearning today.

 

Training Remote Employees

Is a large part of your workforce remote? eLearning is a great way to provide consistent training across the organization—no matter an employee’s location. Mobile learning enables employees to fit in training “on-demand” as their schedule allows. On-demand training is especially helpful for sales reps with busy schedules who are always out of the office selling.

Sharing Company-Wide Information

Every company has standard procedures, processes, policies, etc. that everyone is expected to follow. Why have an in-person, company-wide meeting when the alternative is more affordable, effective, and convenient? ELearning provides a way to streamline sharing information at all levels of the organization with an LMS. Assign everyone the same material or updates to review and save yourself the scheduling headache.

Onboarding New Hires

Every business needs a comprehensive onboarding process. Save HR professionals time by jumpstarting entry-level employees with training as soon as they join the team. ELearning provides a consistent way for new employees to learn everything they need to know at the click of a mouse. Segment onboarding into organized, manageable sections such as organizational basics, human resources, role-specific training, etc.

 

Your eLearning Experts

With all of the new corporate training trends each year, it can be hard to figure out which ones to invest in and how to implement them. Are you ready to invest in the future of your company? The potential of your employees is waiting to be developed. Start reaping the benefits of e learning (your employees will thank you).

At Unboxed Training & Technology, we provide award-winning tools and expertise to help you train, develop, sell, and succeed. Contact us today to learn more about employee training and custom management and leadership training programs.

2020 training trends webinar

The start of every new year is a chance to revisit training goals and aspirations for the coming 12 months. How do you know what’s worth your investment?

Share This Article

More Articles Like This One

How to Track Employee Training

Human capital is by far the most valuable asset to most any business. Although an intangible asset, people are a critical component to a business functioning at optimum capacity. People are part of the profit equation, and to make money, you have to spend money. Employees impact customer satisfaction, sales goals, ongoing innovation, company culture, etc. But, in most cases, employees are only as good as they are trained to be. Employee training is an opportunity for businesses to increase the value of their human capital. An employee training tracker is a key component to the training equation because it helps you identify if your employee training is directly increasing employee performance.

Furthermore, investing in employee training is important for the long term growth and success of a healthy business. So you’re probably thinking, “I agree, but how do I know if what I’m investing in is paying off?” We see where you’re coming from. Implementing an employee training plan usually starts with a learning management system (LMS).

Let’s talk about how an LMS transforms and tracks employee training today…

Employee Training Tracking Software

Training employees and tracking their progress is essential to properly evaluate what’s working, what information is not being retained, and what may need to change. To put things in perspective, up to 40% of employees who don’t receive adequate job training quit within the first year. Onboarding is no cheap investment, so when a new hire is made, that employee needs to be set up for success with well-defined job training.

Spoke® LMS

 

Spoke logo

Time for practical advice: The best way to track employee training is with an LMS.  Employee training tracking software, provided by an LMS, helps you collect, deliver, and track your company’s training content. Spoke® LMS is an award-winning, social LMS for the mobile workforce utilizing gamification to engage employees in training.

 

Assessment Builder

To understand the ROI of training, it needs to be accurately tracked. Tests, quizzes, and assessments are all ways for administrators and employees to identify areas for improvement. Spoke’s Assessment Builder is a useful, employee training tracker for both learners and admins to evaluate knowledge retention. 

Easily create assessments, track progress, and note trends to refine your training over time. Additionally, employees have the ability to test out of courses they have mastered to spend more time training on topics they don’t know as well. Gain insights on how effective your training is by retrieving granular data on specific questions or administer surveys for a broader view.

spoke assessment example questions

Assessments are fully customizable and can be required before or after a training. A pre-assessment is a good way to draw a baseline for comparing employees’ results, post-training. Using a tool like Assessment Builder as an employee training tracker is a great way to start evaluating your internal training efforts. The more you measure, the more you know.

Spoke® Reports

Keep track of your team’s overall results or review individual learner data with Spoke® Reports. Robust reporting helps you identify coaching opportunities for learners who have skill gaps and empower teams that need additional training resources. Filter reports by team, region, job code, and organizational hierarchy.

Spoke LMS reporting features

Dial in on course completions, user activity, and course activities. Practical, performance evaluations have never been so easy. Measure ROI with visual, interactive reports and go beyond the basics to discover metrics like social participation and learner engagement.

To grow your business you have to know your business. Access real-time, interactive dashboards, stunning user transcripts, and optional, business intelligence reports. Spoke is completely customizable to fit your business’ branding too, so you get all the credit for employee training satisfaction (don’t worry, we won’t Unbox your secret).

 

The Kirkpatrick Model

Dig a bit deeper into tracking employee training with the Kirkpatrick Model, which identifies four levels of learning evaluation:

kirkpatrick model four levels learning

At Unboxed Training & Technology, we use the Kirkpatrick Model to evaluate the effectiveness of employee training. Tracking employee training can be an elusive topic, but the four levels of learning can be used as guidelines to evaluate employees with some help from Spoke® LMS.

Reaction: Spoke® Surveys

The first level, “Reaction,” is meant to measure the learner’s experience with the training after they have completed a course. Practically speaking, this would look like administering a survey at the end of a training to gauge the employee’s experience. Some example questions could be:

  • How did you like the training? 
  • What did you like about it?
  • Did you enjoy the learning experience?
  • How do you feel post-training?
  • Were you satisfied with the virtual instructor?

Learning: Spoke® Assessments

The second level, “Learning,” tests the employee’s new knowledge to determine the retention of what was learned. A pre-assessment and post-assessment should be administered to properly gauge the level of comprehension.

  • Pre-assessment: ask questions related to the training topic.
  • Post-assessment: ask topical or scenario-based questions directly after the training to test knowledge retention.
    • What new topics did they learn?
    • How well did they acquire this new knowledge?
    • Are they confident in their abilities to execute the job’s task.
  • Compare results.

Behavior: Practical Application

The third level, “Behavior,” is where the post-training application is played out. Interviews and scenario-based assessments are helpful tools when analyzing the effectiveness of training 3-6 months later. Tests and quizzes are not as effective at this level because behavior changes don’t play out on paper. Changes in behavior occur at different times for everyone and typically require a personal follow up at a later date. 

Results: Key Performance Indicators

Positive results are the goal of any employee training initiative. The success of training is seen over time by measuring company sales goals, team efficiency, individual task completion, customer satisfaction, product quality, faster turnaround times, etc. Identify specific, key performance indicators (KPI) to track, measure, and evaluate. Use those KPI’s to determine how successful the training proved to be over a particular time frame. Review the results at an appointed time or during the employee’s end-of-year evaluation.

 

Tell Me More About Spoke® LMS

Every business is unique, but so is every employee. Training should be custom fit to meet the needs of your business and the learning needs of employees. Do you have an employee training tracker to measure results? Is your training doing the job? Are you ready to start making employee training trackable and more impactful? Request a demo of Spoke® or attend an upcoming Spoke® webinar. Our Spokes-people are on standby to show you how Spoke® can help you train better teams today.

Sources: Kurt, S. “Kirkpatrick Model: Four Levels of Learning Evaluation,” in Educational Technology, October 24, 2016. Retrieved from https://educationaltechnology.net/kirkpatrick-model-four-levels-learning-evaluation/

Share This Article

Featured Resource

Free Step-by-Step LMS Buyers Guide

More Articles Like This One

5 Ways to Utilize E-Learning Games in Employee Training

In the ever-changing world of technology, the race to stay up to date is an exhausting feat. Modern learners are bombarded with texts, emails, phone calls, push notifications, and all kinds of digital distractions throughout the day. Simplifying the training experience is pinnacle to both effective learning and knowledge retention. Integrating eLearning games into your training increases training interactions by 3x, improves knowledge from beginning to end by 64%, and boosts employee engagement (who doesn’t love a good competition?).

Gamification in Business

Gamification is a buzzword these days as one of the most popular learning styles for both learners and educators. Gamification is the application of game mechanics in non-gaming contexts, such as employee training, to increase engagement. Examples of game mechanics include badges, points, levels, and leaderboards. 

corporate university meister learning retention triangle data

Statistically speaking, people only retain about 10% of what they read and 20% of what they hear/see. Corporate Universities author, Jeanne Meister, notes compelling evidence for incorporating gamification in business today:

“Interactive learning games can increase long-term retention rates by up to 10 times.”

5 eLearning Games

In a previous blog, we talked about some questions to consider before introducing games in training. The question isn’t if your organization should introduce games, but how. To understand how you can start utilizing eLearning games in employee training, consider the following.

1. Jeopardy!®

Documenting all of the ins and outs of company products, policies, and best practices could quickly fill a 50-page manual; thankfully, those are long gone! Use the traditional Jeopardy!® format to train employees and reinforce specific topics, relevant to various job descriptions. Assess both hard skills and soft skills with customizable categories to fit your company’s needs.

Jeopardy!® for training includes all of the same rules as the top-rated quiz show on TV with wagers, Double Jeopardy!®, Final Jeopardy!®, and “Daily Doubles.” For cybersecurity training, the categories might be “Passwords,” “Don’t Do This,” and “Crack The Code.” The possibilities are endless and employees will most likely be familiar with the game rules making adoption easy.

2. Recall

Everyone learns differently, so using a mix of training games supports a range of employee learning styles. Recall uses visual learning to test employees’ ability to memorize using videos and images. 

For instance, the game will display a picture, such as a work environment, without giving the player any hint as to what they need to remember. The player is then challenged to recall specific details about what they just saw during a series of questions testing memorization and retention.

3. Trivia

Not a good test taker? No problem. Trivia transforms the negative sentiments around assessments into an exciting, competitive game using points, timers, and leaderboards. Employees are more engaged when tests are gamified into trivia questions. 

Trivia helps learners make the right decisions, faster. Use Trivia to test product knowledge, terminology, encourage asymmetrical thinking (i.e. Think Outside™ the box) and improve retention.

4. Scenarios

Product knowledge and negotiations can be difficult to practice when there is no application for on-the-job instances. Virtual scenarios provide employees the opportunity to learn in a fail-safe setting before being in the “real world.” 

Scenarios are a great training type for customer service representatives, salespeople, and management. Gamified scenarios allow employees to step into the shoes of a virtual character and engage in different conversation paths to test soft skills. Realistic, contextual simulations also help to assess cause and effect decision making.

5. Scramble

New job, new everything. A new employee can feel like they just walked into a foreign country as they begin integrating into the workplace. Colleagues may seem to be speaking another language if new hires are not well prepared with training. Onboarding is an important process to effectively equip new hires, but it doesn’t have to be all mundane.

Scramble is a great resource for terminology and can be played in two ways: Word Scramble and Sentence Scramble. Sentences are either written with a word missing or laid out in a word bank where players are challenged to correctly reorganize them. Learners are tested on knowledge retention whether they are new or seasoned employees.

Game On

Gamified learning management systems (LMS) motivate learners to excel, progress, and achieve final outcomes with anticipation. Each game is easily tracked for robust reporting on an individual or team data. Identify knowledge gaps, improve retention, and empower employees with more effective training experiences. 

When gamification is implemented into eLearning, companies increase employee engagement by 60% and improve productivity by 50% (eLearning Learning). Who’s ready for a performance review now? At Unboxed Training & Technology, we offer a full list of customizable employee training games. Learn more about how to level up your training with eLearning games by watching our Beyond Gamification webinar!

Share This Article

Featured Resource

Free Step-by-Step LMS Buyers Guide

More Articles Like This One

Unboxed Training & Technology Wins Gold and Silver Brandon Hall Group Awards

We’re proud to announce that Unboxed Training & Technology has won two esteemed Brandon Hall Group Excellence Awards for our work with Hilton Worldwide to develop the Hilton Core Sales Skills program.

Unboxed received a Gold award in Excellence in Learning for Best Advance in Competencies and Skill Development, and a Silver award in Excellence in Sales Performance for Best Sales Onboarding Program.

Brandon Hall Group has long been viewed as the industry experts when it comes to recognizing learning excellence,” said Unboxed CEO Brian Leach. “We are thrilled to receive these two prestigious awards with our partners at Hilton. We’re delighted to see the positive impact that the Hilton Core Sales Skills HCCS program is having around the globe!”

The Hilton Core Sales Skills program is a comprehensive sales training curriculum developed by Unboxed and Hilton to unify their Hilton Global Sales Team around proven sales skills and behaviors. The Core Sales Skills program standardized the sales training process across Hilton’s 17 unique brands and many operating regions.

Hilton Team Members participated in an eight-week blended learning program that used microlearning techniques and in-depth learning sessions to maximize engagement and retention. Learners completed a mix of live-action videos, reflection activities, simulations, and virtual instructor-led training sessions to practice and hone their skills. Hilton’s internal assessment of core sales competencies found that the first wave of participants in the program saw a 37% increase in their scores on critical metrics.

“The HCM Excellence Awards recognize programs that measurably benefit organizations,” said Mike Cooke, Brandon Hall Group CEO. “Many human capital management departments are unable to confirm that their initiatives help the business’s bottom line. Because we focus on measurable benefits, our awards program is universally recognized and highly prestigious.”

Award entries were evaluated by a panel of independent industry experts, Brandon Hall Group analysts, and executives. Each entry was evaluated based upon the following criteria:

·     Fit the need: How well did the competency/skill model effectively align with business needs and situation?

·     Design of the program: Was the program designed to address competency/skill gaps?

·     Delivery: Was the learning program delivered effectively, in a manner easy to access and apply?

·     Measurable Benefits: Did the program produce measurable benefits and outcomes?

·     Overall: Did the program demonstrate a positive impact for the learners and the organization?

“The Brandon Hall Group Excellence Awards Program has recognized leading organizations for the past twenty-plus years for the latest trends in Human Capital Management,” said Rachel Cooke, Brandon Hall Group COO and leader of the HCM Excellence Awards Program. “The initiatives that were honored are not only innovative but fit the unique needs of the business and create truly remarkable success stories.”

Share This Article

Featured Resource

Download the B2C Sales
Training Checklist

More Articles Like This One