Today, most businesses have gone virtual at least to some degree, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. We don’t know how long we’ll be living our lives and conducting business in this new normal. But here’s the thing… even under normal circumstances, there are some huge benefits to onboarding and training new employees virtually rather than in person.
As industry professionals, we’re here to give you all the information you need to know about training and onboarding virtually versus in-person, plus some actionable ideas on how to take this part of your business virtual (hint: it involves videos!).
Before we jump into how you can onboard and train employees virtually, we should probably answer one very important question: why should you onboard and train your employees virtually?
The fact is, training and onboarding new employees can be a huge financial drain on a business. In fact, research has shown that the average cost per hire is currently about $4,000. And training is typically a huge part of that cost. That’s why many companies are starting to buck the traditional training structure.
Take Guild Mortgage, for example. They were spending $200,000 annually flying employees to training centers around the country (plus paying for their room and board once they arrived). That cost was what finally prompted them to convert their classroom training framework for new sales hires entirely over to virtual training.
Microsoft is another company that has taken their training virtual. The company reported that implementing their new video learning program resulted in a total of costs saved/avoided totaling around $13.9 million dollars per year with an ROI of 569%.
And it’s not just money you’re saving. Virtual training and onboarding save your company (and your new hires) tons of time. In fact, Ernst and Young reduced their training time by over 50% when they switched to virtual training.
So if you want to save your company time and money, onboarding and training virtually is obviously the way to go. But how do you do it? Let’s jump in…
Most elements of your actual training program will stay the same in a virtual format. What will change is the environment. And that’s what you have to spend some time planning for. First, you want to make sure that you have a detailed agenda for new employees to follow. When the training environment is virtual, you want to ensure that every new hire knows what to expect going into the training. Always provide a solid outline of the training course and a timeline of what information will be covered on which days.
You also want to ensure that new employees are able to participate and/or ask questions as needed. If you choose to do some live sessions in your training, that’s a great time to encourage employees to be actively engaged. Provide polling questions, ask attendees to “raise their hands”, encourage questions in the chat function of your meeting software, etc.
And finally, you want to take advantage of the unique opportunity that you have when you onboard and train employees virtually…
Research has shown that visual information is better retained in long-term memory and helps improve comprehension, among other benefits. That’s why video is the perfect format for virtual training and onboarding. Sure, you could go with slideshows filled with written content. But video content packs more of a punch and will help your new employees remain more engaged and retain more of the information you provide them.
The great thing about choosing to onboard and train your employees using video is that it’s a one-time, up-front money and time investment that pays dividends. You take some time and spend a little money creating your training videos, and then you have a catalog of video content that you can use again and again with every new hire.
It may sound overwhelming to transfer all of your training programs to video content. But when you hire us, we make it easy! See, creating training videos is one of our specialties. We can help you create a professional, quality catalog of training videos that will serve your company, expedite your onboarding process, and save you money for years to come.
We’d love to work with you! For more information on our services, get in touch with us today!