When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many businesses had to change how they did business on the fly, transitioning from a primarily in-person workplace to a largely virtual workforce. However, as drastic as these changes seemed, in reality, they were not so many inventions as they were dramatic accelerations of changes that were already underway.
According to McKinsey, most companies were already focusing on implementing digitization strategies in their workforce. While the pandemic put a great deal of stress on those companies, it also provided a working laboratory that allowed executives to study virtual workspaces in real time. The upshot is that many of the changes are here to stay.
This shift towards online, remote work has been happening for quite some time in training, too. Many platforms experienced tremendous growth during the pandemic. The CEO of edX told CNBC that the number of new learners registering with their service increased by 161% over the past year. And while some of this can be attributed to the sudden increase in unemployment, most of the learners felt they had an opportunity to build their skills base.
Online training programs are likely to only increase in popularity, with Forbes noting that the industry is expected to surpass $350 billion by 2025. These courses provide learners the opportunity to fill in knowledge and skills gaps and further strengthen their existing skills, all on their own time, and usually at less expense than in-person training.
If you’re considering adding online training programs for your company, there’s no reason why you should feel intimidated by the process. Creating online training content is not only a cost-effective way to provide professional development, but it gives you total control over the content of your courses, allowing you to target the specific needs of your company.
How to Create an Online Training Program
Creating your own online training courses can seem baffling and overwhelming. But the process is actually fairly straightforward, especially with a guide to follow. Here are six steps you can use to put together your own online training programs.
1. Define Your Training Objectives
Before you dive into creating a program, your first step should be to identify your training objectives as clearly as possible. For instance, your C-suite executives may have identified areas of growth that may require upskilling your staff or your evaluations might show you that your employees are deficient in skills like customer service or budget management. There are several ways to go about determining these needs.
First and foremost, your training program should focus on building skills that will best serve your company’s mission—and your bottom line. While it’s never a bad idea to involve your workforce in determining what skills they would be interested in developing further, those surveys must play a secondary role in the company’s best interest.
2. Choose the Right Platform
Once you’ve decided on your training objectives, the next task is to choose the best platform for your online training program. There are several different platforms available, each of which offers various packages and price points. While you could also build your own in-house education platform, this tends to be much more expensive, which is why most businesses tend to go with an established company.
When you’re choosing a platform, do your due diligence and investigate a range of companies, and you’ll be likely to find one that provides you almost exactly what you need.