Often, when businesses implement training programs, they use tools like PowerPoint, shared binders, and spreadsheets, making it difficult to track and verify the results of training programs. Fortunately, creating a robust training program does not have to be an impossible, time-consuming task.
There are three major considerations you should take when you begin to vet training-software services:
- the company and the product;
- performance analytics;
- and hidden costs.
Know the Product
All your employees will be using the training system you choose, so it’s important not to thrust something on them that is incompatible with their existing workflows. Take advantage of any opportunity to test, test, test the product:
- Free trials: Take advantage of free trials, if they are offered.
- Live demos: Ask for live demonstrations, and, while you’re at it, ask to see real client examples.
- Use your content: Take any existing learning materials and apply them to the systems you are vetting.
- Practice: Build and share content in your test account, so that you can start to see how well reporting and management tools function.
Aside from enjoyable content, tracking and reporting are the crux of any stellar training process. Decide what metrics work best for your company; then, begin to map these metrics back to ROI. Always compare multiple software options, and get feedback from other stakeholders at your company before you pull the trigger.
Ask for testimonials or introductions to other clients to get third-party opinions on product performance. This will also give you the chance to glean tips and tricks from pro users! Case studies from your prospective vendors will provide benchmarks for results you can aspire to.
Decipher Hidden Costs
Are all the costs associated with vendor X evident? If not, ask for a complete list of expenses that will arise:
- What is the pricing model?
- Do you pay by number of lessons or users?
- What is limited (and what is unlimited)?
- What are the payment terms?
The true cost of an online platform also heavily depends on the return on investment. According to a report from the SHRM Foundation, companies that upgraded their employee training programs saw improved financials, increased productivity, and higher employee retention. New hires that received proper and thorough training were 69 percent more likely to stay at least three years.
Now is the time to start looking for more effective and efficient ways to train your employees. I suggest considering an online platform for building, sharing, and tracking your learning materials. As long as your company takes into consideration the hidden costs, the ease of the software, and proper performance analytics, the benefits of an online training platform should far outweigh those of any older methods.