One way virtual meetings serve businesses of all sizes is with better employee training.
In-person training events successfully engage employees but cost time and money. Passive online training (such as emails, slideshows and online documents) offers flexibility but limits interaction.
Today’s online training tools offer the best of both worlds, including interaction and efficiency. Here’s how virtual meetings solve both problems.
Interaction: Face-to-Face Online Training
The nuances of communication — gestures, tone, body language — are not lost in virtual meetings. When used for employee training, attendees experience the same personal connection as in-person events.
Online training software provides a variety of ways for attendees to interact, like real-time and streaming video, screen sharing, public and private chat, polls and surveys. With ample opportunities for employees to ask questions and participate, they engage more, and this increased engagement leads to higher knowledge retention.
That interaction also offers companies the means to get feedback to improve training programs, as well as easily analyze the ROI of online training events. In addition to seeing who joined and how long they attended, post-event reports sum up levels of engagement.
Efficiency: Convenient, Cost-Effective Training
Moving training online means companies don’t have to stop the engine to transfer new information to workers. In fact, virtual meetings accelerate training with quicker deliveries of information.
Because no one has to leave their work location to attend, they can quickly return to work once training’s over, resulting in less downtime and increased productivity. This also makes training more flexible and convenient for mobile employees like telecommuters and professionals in the field.
By offering anywhere, anytime access to online training, virtual meetings save companies money on travel, venues and print collateral for training events. Instead of booking flights and conference rooms, over 100 people meet at once online, and these live sessions can be recorded and repurposed for on-demand viewing or intranet archives.
Virtual meetings are easy enough for anyone outside of IT to host themselves: human resources can onboard employees, sales managers can update entire sales teams and marketing can share new campaigns with sales professionals in the field.
Plus, security features ensure that training documents, videos and sensitive internal information are accessed by only the appropriate people.
Capturing Engagement Online
Some business educators argue that online training can’t hold attention as well as meeting in person. However, just like all virtual and in-person meetings, the level of engagement isn’t entirely determined by the method of delivery but also by the event structure.
Since employees in online trainings are less visible, they have more freedom to multitask. Just like when minds wander during in-person events, however, it is the host’s role to employ all the tools and tactics available to demand full attention. No matter where employees meet to learn, they always need constant activities to stay engaged, as well as content with a narrow focus to retain information.