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Enhance Remote Company Organization and Employee Learning Through These 9 Integrations

Do you need to change how you think about employee learning? Before 2020 and Covid-19 hit, there was a negativity around working from home. In fact, several businesses were moving away from remote work. To name just a few, Best Buy, Yahoo, IBM, Honeywell and Bank of America were all abandoning their remote work initiatives. These companies said they wanted to improve communication, collaboration and teamwork by coming back into the office setting. 

Compare this to 2020 and the impacts of COVID-19 and employee learning has really shifted. Forty-two percent of the U.S. labor force is now working from home full-time. This accounts for almost twice as many employees working from home versus in the office. And if you consider the U.S. gross domestic product based on earnings, the  “work-from-home employees” now account for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity.

As you can see, you need to reexamine how you think about employee learning given this new landscape. And it seems that both employees and employers see the benefits of remote work so much that it is here to stay. In fact,  many major companies are saying they will continue remote work even after the pandemic.

So how do you best support your employees when out of the office? And how do you best support your company when remote? We’ll give you some apps and integrations that will enhance employee productivity and learning as well as help your company work remotely more efficiently. 

Best practices for remote employee learning

Before we get into which products or services to invest in, let’s talk about best practices for remote employee learning. With employees working from home on different WIFI networks and with various distractions, what are the best ways to learn? Here are some tips to keep in mind.

  • Put yourself in your employees’ shoes

In an office, it’s easy to walk by and oversee training. Whether you use all in-classroom training, online training or a blended training environment, you can observe first-hand how the learning process is going. However, when your employees work from home, it’s hard to picture how they learn. So set them up for success. Make sure they have the necessary equipment and tools to take the training they need. Also survey every employee and ask what will help them learn from home.

  • Invest in remote training software

We’ll get into specifics a little later, but you’ll need a platform for employee training that works remotely. You need to take into consideration different employee time zones, Internet connectivity and built-in support, if questions arise.  If you don’t already have a virtual training platform, consider your company size, budget and what your specific needs are when selecting a provider. Many come with free trials so you can always try out a few before making your decision final. 

  • Mix up the delivery

Employees have different learning styles and certainly learn at various paces. So take into account different learning strategies when training virtually. For example, you may have some training modules that use video and you may develop others with text-based information. Mixing and matching different ways to learn will help employees better absorb the information when out of a brick and mortar office. 

  • Train on demand

When building a remote training program, it has to be flexible. Employees need to be able to log in and take the training when it works best for their schedules. However, by using a corporate learning management system, you can assign training and set parameters as to what dates the training needs to be completed. This process allows training to be fluid, but also managed. 

  • Include socialization

When employees learn at home, it takes away that element of socialization. So when building training remotely, find ways to build it back in. For example, you could use breakout sessions that get employees interacting or build a chatroom to discuss post lesson planning. Not only will you get employees socializing, but it will help employees better absorb the information and retain what’s being learned.

  • Centralize training

Over and over employees cite lack of career advancement as a reason for leaving a job. In fact, a strong learning culture led to 30 to 50 percent higher retention rates in companies. So by stating you have a main focus on company learning from the beginning is important. Start with onboarding and offer continuous learning throughout an employee’s lifecycle. And just because you are remote, doesn’t mean you can’t foster this same culture. Let employees know that even though they aren't in the office, they will still have access to a robust learning program from home.

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Key integrations for business organization and remote learning 

Now that you know how to make your remote learning platform successful, let’s talk about key integrations for remote learning. Many learning management systems offer these integrations, so it makes using these programs even easier. Here are our suggestions to get started.

1. Zoom

Whether you have a large business or smaller operation, Zoom is a great integration for employee learning. In fact, learning management company Continu has partnered with Zoom and created Zoom for Continu. With this program it’s easy to convert any elearning training session into a  Zoom session. Some of the other key features include automating your attendance tracking, capturing recordings, and leveraging the powerful video conferencing capabilities of Zoom.

The versatile part of this integration is learners will have access to training sessions within Continu, allowing them to reference information or relearn what they didn’t pick up the first time in training. 

2. LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn is more than a business social network. With companies and individuals sharing articles, blogs and other important industry information, it has become a robust learning network. LinkedIn Learning has partnered with Continu and learners can now access courses on business, leadership, writing, programming, Microsoft and Google business apps, social media, and a variety of other professional topics. These can be found directly in Continu so there is no need to manage multiple systems for your employees. 

There are over 9,000 courses offered by  professionals, industry leaders, trainers, and other experienced teachers on LinkedIn Learning. These courses range in topic and level of expertise so whether you are training managers or entry-level employees, LinkedIn Learning offers robust employee training which is why it makes our list for top integrations for employee learning.

3. Slack

Slack is another employee learning integration tool to help remote teams. If your company already uses Slack for project management, then linking it to a supported learning management system is very seamless. That way everything your team is working on shows up in Slack. For example, say you want to assign four training modules. If you have linked Slack with a supporter learning management system, then those four training modules will show up within that team members tasks.

When working remotely, communication can sometimes lack, but by using Slack, you can keep track of who is working on projects, where these stand in the process as well as who has taken the assigned training. It works as an overall project management system to manage workflow and training together.

4. Figma

If you aren’t familiar with Figma, it’s a cloud-based design and prototyping tool for digital projects. Specifically, it is a UI and UX design application that you can create websites, apps or smaller user interface components to compliment existing projects. It’s ideal for remote teams to collaborate on projects no matter where they are physically. Unlike other prototyping tools, with Figma you can work with teams on projects. 

5. Hubstaff

Sometimes you may need a contractor or a freelancer to help on a short-term basis. That’s why Hubstaff makes a great addition for remote teams. They offer a free network of freelancers and a robust search tool to find the right addition to your team. While it’s important to upskill your current team members, at times your current team may not have the work capacity to get a project over the finish line on time. 

The nice part about using a freelance network like Hubstaff, is they are a remote company and their freelancers are used to working remotely. So the process for bringing these team members up to speed no matter where they are physically located will be easy. That way, you can spend less time onboarding a project and more time getting the project to completion.

6. TransparentBusiness

TransparentBusiness is a fairly new company in response to the large increase of remote companies. Sometimes given the size or nature of your business, it may be hard to manage remotely. That’s where TransparentBusiness comes in. This is a tool that companies can use to learn how much time they are investing in projects, in contractors and how efficiently they are running their businesses.

TransparentBusiness is a Cloud solution that solves three challenges associated with remote work: trust, collaboration and responsibility. By solving these, companies receive increased productivity, less overbilling, better coordination and increased monitoring. Plus, there is real-time information on cost and status of all tasks and projects so companies can better adjust given the findings.

7. Salesforce

Salesforce is an important cloud-based computing service as a software (SaaS) company that specializes in customer relationship management (CRM). Some of the key features that make it ideal for sales team members is it helps track customer activity, market to potential customers and offers analytics. In addition, it’s a great system for remote teams. Since it’s cloud-based, any sales team member can log in and make updates for other team members to see. This keeps communication flowing regardless of different time zones.

When you pair Salesforce with a learning management system, you raise the bar on employee learning through this integration. Some of the features include accessing relevant training information from Continu about your sales and success teams, receiving up to date information about content completion, workshop attendance, assessment results and more. Plus, you’ll have a learning dashboard along with your Salesforce dashboard for all team members to see. 

8. BambooHR

BambooHR is a cloud-based human resources management software solution for smaller business operations. . BambooHR offers a human resource information system (HRIS) that features an applicant tracking system (ATS), time tracking, payroll processing, benefits administration, employee engagement, employee satisfaction tools, automated reminders, and workforce data analytics. 

BambooHR is great when working remotely to improve the hiring process, onboarding new employees, managing compensation, maintaining and analyzing employee data, and developing a strong company culture.The nice part is BambooHR can be connected to a learning management system. This helps integrate employees in your training program from the start. It really puts an emphasis on training from the start.

9. Workday

Workday is a cloud-based human resource management solution that helps businesses with workforce planning, analysis and execution. Some of the tools include financials, HR, planning, talent, payroll and analytics. It’s ideal for several industries such as healthcare, higher education, manufacturing, finance, technology, and retail. And when running a remote company, Workday can keep all these functions running seamlessly behind the scenes.

When you integrate Workday with a learning management system, you can provide your employees with learning tools in a personalized manner. In other words, content can be curated by specific skills and you can use training modules to deliver learning content directly to specific employees, departments or teams. 

How can your company thrive in a remote environment?

Whether you started out remote or have moved into this environment due to current circumstances, having a few go-to integrations is important. It can help streamline your business and offer checks and balances when you aren’t operating out of a brick and mortar building. Plus, many integrations can sync to your learning management system, making employee learning both trackable and scalable over time. It also organizes your learning by department such as sales training or by employee lifecycle such as onboarding. All of these capabilities become important for upskilling your employees no matter where they physically work. 

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