Corporate Training: Now, More than Ever
By Melanie Turek, Industry Director, Frost & Sullivan
When I ask C-level executives about their biggest concerns when it comes to deploying new technology, one topic always tops the list: training. That’s a bit of a head scratcher, really. Training is, after all, something completely under a manager’s control. But in fact, with the increasingly virtual nature of the workplace, it’s harder than ever to make sure employees get the training they need—whether it’s related to technology itself, or broader business processes and corporate policies and regulations.
Organizations today are managing a growing number of remote workers, partners, suppliers and customers—all in the face of increased competition, pressure to keep costs down, and rapidly changing markets. These companies know they must continually train their employees and constituents, as quickly as possible, to ensure that they are up to speed on the latest company and product information; in-house technology; and business processes. But even as corporate training is becoming more important, it’s also more difficult, with trainers and their students spread out across vast geographic regions and time zones, and even across cultures.
- On-demand, rather than scheduled, training. It’s no longer enough to plan a series of training sessions and expect employees to “show up” at the given time. With people working in different time zones, from various locations, and juggling multiple job roles, they can’t be expected to prioritize training ahead of business-critical projects or their own work schedules.
- Insightful, relevant content that engages attendees while ensuring their training needs are met. It’s critical to be able to cut through the multi-media clutter, while making sure that the information imparted is understood and retained. And as with all learning, corporate training greatly benefits from participant collaboration. Video, too, can add value to the experience and make it more interactive.
- Ongoing learning as needed. It’s important that corporate trainers be able to offer refresher courses and follow-up classes on an as-need basis, to ensure employees remain up to date on the latest information, and that they can refresh their memories on certain elements of a program or process days, weeks or even months after the initial training took place.
- Keeping costs and travel in check, while reaching more people more often. This is the age of innovation, in which employees must work with colleagues, partners and customers to develop content and ideas quickly and decisively. Training is critical to prepare all employees for this new way of working. But as more of those employees are located in remote locations and home-based offices, reaching them with training becomes more difficult and costly. Managers need solutions that can extend across the boundaries in the most cost-effective manner.
The good news is, web conferencing can help corporate trainers meet all these needs—easily, and cost effectively—and sometimes better than real-world events. For information on how companies are delivering effective online training through web conferencing, join Melanie for “Effective Online Training: Tips from the Experts,” a free webinar on Wednesday, February 23 at 2 p.m. EST.
Melanie is a renowned expert in unified communications, collaboration, social networking and content-management technologies in the enterprise. For 15 years, Ms. Turek has worked closely with hundreds of vendors and senior IT executives across a range of industries to track and capture the changes and growth in the fast-moving unified communications market. Melanie writes often on the business value and cultural challenges surrounding real-time communications, collaboration and Voice over IP, and she speaks frequently at leading customer and industry events.