Employee Training: Software vs. Face-To-Face

It goes without saying that competent, hardworking employees are the backbone of any successful company, and no matter how good a job management might be doing, if the workforce is less than satisfactory, then there isn’t much anyone can really do.

This is why it is very important to have a good idea about just how competent your workers are and to regularly think of ways to improve their skills for the betterment of the entire corporation. One of the ways you can do this is to put both new and existing employees through a training protocol that will serve to teach them all they need to know about the job position they wish to fill.

Employee Training: Reasons and Benefits

If you notice that multiple employees are repeating the same mistake over and over again, no matter what it may be tied to, that’s a sure sign that you need to consider investing in some sort of employee training. This can cover pretty much any topic, from ethics at the workplace to developing one of the many skills that your employees have yet to pick up on their own.

When hiring new employees, one of the most desirable traits is the existing experience in the field that the employee is interested in, and unfortunately, this isn’t a commodity we can always count on. More often than not these days, your new employee will not have experience in doing the exact kind of work that will be expected of them, and employee training can be a great help there. For example, when hiring older individuals that do not have that much experience or skill with computers, and if that is something that they will have to do, it is a really, really good idea to have a training program in place that will show them the ropes beforehand.

In fact, many studies have proven that it is actually more effective to hire employees that do not have the existing experience and simply put them through a training program that will teach them everything they need to know. Group-based employee training is also a great way to develop your employee’s team-building skills and teach them the value of teamwork in the company, as well as increase their morale in general.

When it comes to developing a training program, there are generally two paths you can take; you can have the training face-to-face, in a classroom with a dedicated trainer, or you can opt out for a software solution. Both methods have their own pros and cons, and today we’d like to make a fair comparison of those two so you can make an informed choice for yourself and your company.

The Face-to-Face Method

The traditional method of teaching would have a group of students in a classroom or an amphitheater and listen to a single teacher elaborate on a lesson that they need to master to improve their respective skills and, in this case, become more proficient in the workplace in whatever aspect they deem necessary. E-learning is definitely catching up to the tried and true method of face-to-face training, and many of these advantages will quite possibly be obsolete in less than a decade, but we think that it is important to state and acknowledge them nonetheless.

One of the most obvious advantages is that face-to-face training has the potential to be more engaging than e-learning for the employee. It takes a great deal of self-discipline to pay maximum attention and not be tempted to multitask (check one’s Facebook/Twitter feed and the like while trying to pay attention to the lecture) when there’s an actual physical barrier between you and the instructor.

Additionally, should any kind of problem or inconsistency arise, it’s easy to ask a question and engage in a 1-on-1 interaction with the instructor (as long as they’re willing to respond to and answer such queries) and clear up anything that isn’t perfectly clear. It’s definitely a more engaging way to learn if the trainees do not have the required discipline.

And finally, one might argue that the face-to-face method allows for more discussion between the instructor and the trainee, and as long as you’re in the same room, there’s even potential for a debate, which is a great way for students to get more involved in the lecture and learn a lot more. Granted, you can still do this via an Internet protocol, but some would argue that it isn’t as effective.

The Software Method

When it comes to E-learning, there are quite a number of advantages that both the employees and the company itself can enjoy if you are opt-out of a software-based training program. First of all, we have to mention the obvious benefit of how easy it is to use multimedia to teach students; images, audio, video, and interactive virtual environments can help students learn in many different ways, not to mention that feedback and assistance can be given at the push of a button.

Also, because software-based training can be attended from the comfort of one’s home, you can have as many students participating in a lecture as you’d like – you aren’t limited by the amount of physical space, unlike with the face-to-face method.

The lower cost argument is also something that has to be mentioned; when going for the traditional teaching method of face-to-face, the company generally has to take care of employee’s accommodation and travel expenses (among other things), and if there are a lot of employees taking the training this can add up to quite a large number pretty quickly. There’s also the subject of environmental impact and reducing your company’s carbon footprint by switching to E-learning, and according to certain studies, this can add up to as much as 90 percent if the training program is implemented correctly.

In the end, which method you’ll end up using is up to the company and its particular needs and requirements, but it’s a good idea to have all the essential information about the pros and cons of each before you make such a decision. Many people might argue that E-learning is definitely the future and that software tools will become indispensable in education as they keep evolving, so that’s also something that needs to be considered. We wish you the best of luck in developing your training program and hope that the information we’ve put forward today will come in handy during the process.

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