How To Leverage Learning Management Systems For Effective Employee Training

As companies become more diverse and more cloud based, delivering training can be both more difficult and more necessary. With workers spread out, possibly around the globe, conducting traditional onboarding with one-on-one instruction can be complicated. Using presentations, online training sessions, and online resource documents can be much simpler and more effective.

Using a cloud based learning management system, or LMS, can be an effective way of organizing training segments, assigning sessions and testing, setting deadlines, and verifying completion. But how do you make an LMS work for your company?

Understand Current Training Levels

To start, you need to understand what your employees’ current level of training is. Brand new hires probably know very little about your company and almost nothing about operations. Hires who have been with the company for a few months may have a good basic understanding of the company and culture, but not yet have truly extensive knowledge.

And experienced employees may have focused so hard on one particular area that their knowledge in others has flagged or faded. By knowing where your training is currently, you can plan out training sessions your employees need to complete.

Understand What Your LMS Needs To Do

Once you understand your current training, you can start to draw out what sorts of training your learning management system needs to provide. For example, you could use it to facilitate most onboarding with sessions about the company formation, the basic policy and procedures, and training sessions around federal regulations. You could then manage more specific learning through one-on-one training.

A key detail with LMS is that it is not a one-size fits all solution for employees with more experience. If a manager notices a problem with an employee, the temptation is to have them take or retake a training session. But before a training session, the manager needs to understand what is causing the employee problem.

A training session won’t fix an employee frustration with the workplace, an interpersonal conflict, or a problem with the workflow. In those situations, forcing an employee to retake a training session can actual make frustrations worse.

Understand How To Measure Success

Many LMS training sessions end with an exam to demonstrate that the employee attended to and understood the information. But this is not the only way to measure success, and may not be the most effective. What an immediate exam shows is that the employee remembered the information immediately after the training. What you need to know is whether the employee retained the information in the days and weeks that followed.

Different companies may have different ways to track whether or not a particular training module was successful. Watching to see if an employee’s job performance improves may be beneficial; carefully monitoring their performance to ensure that they’re following new or updated protocols may also be useful.

Understand How To Develop Employees

Sharing company information is only one way to develop employees. For a manager to really help their employees excel within an organization, they need to understand what each individual employee wants for their employment future. Someone may be content with the position they have and simply want to continue to get better at their job. Someone else may be eyeing a corner office someday. And someone else may be working at a company to gather knowledge while they work on opening their own business down the road.

A huge portion of employee retention is helping your employees feel satisfied in their environment. Modern workers often change jobs, even industries, several times in their lives. Once employers see and acknowledge that, it’s easier to see how developing new skills, even skills that seem only tangential to the employee’s current position, can help an employee maintain their on the job happiness.

Understand Follow Up

Not all training can be conducted online; some conversations and trainings must happen in person. No matter how a training is delivered, it’s important for employers to follow up with the employee a period of time after the training is completed. They should ask some basic questions: how did you find the training? Did you learn from it? Did it help you do your job more efficiently? How? Is there a better way to offer the same information? Is there something we missed?

Gathering this information can help clear up any missed areas on the individual employee’s training, but it can also help to refine the training module over time. Certainly, redeveloping a training based on one experience is usually unnecessary – an obvious exception being if an oversight is found which could leave the company open to lawsuits due to harassment or federal law violation – but patterns of gaps should be addressed.

Learning management systems have the potential to be a powerful tool for employee training when used efficiently.