Ensuring continuing training for your company's human capital is a sure way to maintain its leading edge and even its talents. But what types of training yield the best results? On-line or in-person training, at lunch hour? Here's a brief overview.
Various types of training can be suitable, depending on the skill you wish an employee to develop. Refresher technical skills, such as mastering a software for example, are increasingly taught with video tutorials, that is, by way of on-line learning. The latter are more economical because they can be disseminated to a great number of employees.
However, employees wanting to improve their interpersonal and communication skills continue to favor classroom training because nothing can replace human contact. "Participants find it easier to draw on their field experience and group exchanges are facilitated. They can therefore learn a lot from other participants," explained Éric Delisle, the Human Resources Adviser and Program Director at Technologia, a firm specializing in company training.
According to Éric Delisle, combining both methods, on-line and in person training, is the latest trend. Virtual classrooms, where you are taught by a trainer in real time, but remotely, are gaining in popularity. Indeed attendance to these provides the benefits of social interaction without the downsides of travelling, which can be lengthy and costly at times. Éric Delisle noted that it's the preferred solution for many companies having antenna regional offices.
The latter also noted that more and more employees prefer tutorials they can find on-line. This enables them to receive quick training on certain technical aspects of their job, especially in office automation. This also benefits employers since they can devote more training hours to interpersonal skills, which are longer and more costly to develop. According to the Conference Board of Canada, in 2014-2015, Canadian companies spent an average of $800 to train one employee, who devoted 31 hours to this during the year.
The Keys to Success
Letting employees set their own pace of learning is beneficial for information retention, yet only 16% of companies allow this, according to a study involving 340 companies carried out by the Association for Talent Development. From this standpoint, on-line learning is more advantageous, because it enables learners to take control of their learning time. According to a 2015 study by the Harvard Business School, those who took a moment to reflect on what they had just learned showed more improvement than those who simply repeated an instruction,.
Whatever the choice of training, what matters most is to quickly apply the theory and to frequently practice it. "When we have completed our training, we leave with a box of tools. Practice enables us to learn. The more we practice, the better it is," believes Éric Delisle.