March 25, 2020
The workplace is in a constant state of change. And as more companies adopt a distributed (remote) workforce model or hire more tech-fluent team members, analog training courses might not be the most effective method for getting your new team up to speed on your company, products and services.
Interactive online training (or gamified learning) has quickly become a popular alternative to the traditional classroom method. Beyond delivering consistent education and improving information retention for all types of employees, here are five reasons why you should consider switching to an online, interactive training program:
1. Teach any topic, any time.
New product introductions and demos, brand guidelines overviews, sales strategies and customer service — you can train your team on all of these topics (and more) with interactive online training courses. Plus, once a course is created, it can be shared, viewed and updated any time.
2. Cut training costs.
Making the move to remote learning with interactive online courses gives you the ability to eliminate time and travel expenses associated with in-person training. This is a big plus, especially if you have multiple trainees in multiple locations.
3. Make learning manageable.
Micro learning — or taking five to 10 minute training “breaks” — has become a popular method for tackling mandated training. With interactive courses, you can deliver information in short, digestible “bites” — allowing employees to learn at their own pace or during pockets of downtime.
4. Engage trainees.
The more employees are engaged in the learning, the more they retain. Interactive courses allow you to incorporate multimedia features like audio, video, downloadable pdfs and slide shows with gamified elements like knowledge checks, levels and badges — making training more enjoyable for your employees.
5. Motivate employees.
Learning about brands and products in static environments can be at best uninspiring and at worst ineffective. However, 83% of employees who received gamified training felt more motivated.
How to create an interactive training course.
Before jumping right into the development of your online courses, it's important to set clear training objectives up front. Be sure to ask yourself:
Once you’ve set your objectives, you’ll want to make sure you have the assets you need to make an A+ learning experience for your employees. These assets can include videos, audio, images, graphics, product sell sheets and other materials.
As for actual development of the course, we prefer to use Storyline 360 and Rise 360 — which are both products found within the Articulate 360 suite — although there are plenty of other tools and e-learning platforms available for most needs and budgets.
Storyline 360 is completely customizable while Rise 360 is clean, fast and templated — allowing you to quickly create your course using a predetermined set of content building blocks. Both tools also allow you to collaborate with others during the development of your online courses. There's even a robust community of users willing to share their how-tos and insights, which is great for crowdsourcing creative training solutions. But our favorite feature by far? When you’re ready to get your courses up and running, Storyline 360 and Rise 360 will generate packaged HTML files that can be incorporated on a pre-existing website or learning management system.
Think sales tools, too.
Besides offering you an interactive training solution to improve engagement and knowledge retention, Storyline 360 and Rise 360 can also be used to create interactive sales tools. We’ve seen success with this type of application in the creation of trade show touchscreen displays, interactive sales presentations and decision trees for helping customers navigate through their options — but your options are nearly limitless.
And to sum it all up, whether you choose to go digital with your training, your sales tools or both, you can’t go wrong with adding a bit of on-demand interactivity.