The modern workplace changes rapidly due to technological advancements, globalization, and shifting business models. As a result, there is an increasing need for employees to upskill and adapt to new and emerging trends. The traditional approach to employee training is no longer sufficient, and organizations need to embrace a more dynamic and continuous learning culture. Blended learning has emerged as a game-changer for companies seeking to enhance their training outcomes.
By integrating online training with traditional in-person instruction, this training methodology has proven to be highly effective and is gaining popularity at an exponential rate. Digits conducted a survey revealing that the preferred learning method for adults aged between 16 and 54 is watching online videos, with approximately one-third of respondents in each age group selecting this option.
The Changing Employee Training Landscape and Rising Need for Upskilling
Previously, employee training mainly focused on enhancing technical skills and knowledge associated with particular job positions. However, with the rise of automation, digitalization, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, there has been a significant shift in the types of skills that employees need to have to remain relevant and competitive in the job market. Here are the key drivers of this change:
1. Rapid pace of technological change
New technologies are constantly emerging, and organizations must ensure that their employees have the skills and knowledge to work with them effectively. For example, the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation is transforming how work is done across industries, and employees need to be trained to work alongside these technologies.
2. Rise of remote work and distributed teams
Organizations are increasingly embracing flexible work arrangements, accelerating the adoption of remote and hybrid work. According to a study conducted by Buffer, an overwhelming majority of 90% of the participants expressed positive views regarding working remotely or adopting a hybrid work model. This has created new challenges for employee training, as traditional classroom-based training is no longer practical. As a result, organizations are turning to digital learning solutions such as online courses, webinars, and virtual classrooms to provide training to their employees.
3. Changing employee expectations
Today’s employees value continuous learning and development opportunities and are likelier to stay with an organization that invests in their professional development. Organizations are adopting a more personalized approach to employee training, offering customized learning paths catering to each employee’s needs and preferences.
Benefits of Blended Learning for Employee Upskilling: 4 Reasons to Consider
Blended learning is considered the optimal approach for upskilling employees. The scope of these activities includes a range of methods such as workshops, classroom sessions, webinars, surveys, practical learning opportunities, and guidance through coaching and mentoring. The content types that are most commonly used in blended learning include eLearning, video, audio, workbooks, and documents.
Blended learning is the perfect method for enhancing employees’ skills, and here are five reasons why.
1. Empowering employees with on-the-go access
Employees who favor online learning prioritize the flexibility of accessing their learning materials on demand. With mobile learning, employees can conveniently access their training using a handheld device and a stable internet connection at their preferred time, eliminating the need for additional resources. Individuals who prefer visual or self-paced learning can benefit from online video-based learning through their smartphones. On the other hand, social and auditory learners can benefit from live instructor-led classrooms.
2. Gives more control to learners
Individuals learn most effectively when they can regulate their learning pace. This holds particular significance for corporate training, given that employees differ from typical students and may face significant time constraints while juggling heavy workloads and personal commitments. Adhering to the company’s rigid learning schedule can lead to lower-quality learning outcomes, or employees may drop out of the training altogether. Blended learning allows learners to progress through online learning at a pace that suits them rather than being dictated by the fastest or slowest learner in a group.
3. Reduces expenses and enhances ROI
By utilizing the blended learning approach, the expenses in enhancing employees’ skills can be greatly decreased as it involves fewer instructors and eliminates the need for physical space, unlike other forms of learning. This can result in optimized ROI by reducing instructor fees, travel expenses, and training materials costs. Additionally, it facilitates distance learning on a global scale, which can minimize the disruption of training on daily operations and employees, leading to cost savings.
4. Improves the learning process
Integrating multimedia and instructional design in eLearning provides a highly immersive learning experience that can be repeated multiple times. This repeatable aspect benefits employees looking to learn and retain new skills. The blended learning system enhances employee engagement and involvement in the learning process with a wide range of training modes available, such as multimedia, presentations, instructor-led training, classroom workshops, real-life projects, and gamification.
Creating a Successful Blended Learning Model: Five Key Strategies
Improving the delivery of your blended learning program is essential to future-proof your training programs and enhance your employees’ learning experience. Here are the strategies L&D leaders can follow:
- Find the ideal balance between face-to-face and online interactions
- Consider ‘learning transfer, which refers to applying newly acquired skills in practical or real-world scenarios
- Prevent overwhelming employees with excessive information
- Focus on catering to personalized learning
- Invest in the appropriate technologies
Blended learning has proven to be an effective and efficient approach to upskilling employees in today’s fast-paced and ever-changing work environment. It equips employees with new knowledge and skills and allows them to practice their learning in real-life situations, resulting in improved job performance and productivity. Organizations that invest in blended learning to upskill their employees will likely reap significant benefits in employee engagement, retention, and overall business success.
If you’re searching for a blended learning solutions provider, Infopro Learning is your perfect partner. With a team of experienced eLearning enthusiasts, Infopro Learning provides end-to-end blended learning solutions, including content development, learning management system implementation, training delivery, and more.