Workplace education has never been more important. Beyond the fact that training is crucial for everything from onboarding to cybersecurity, it’s also a way for companies to reduce turnover by investing in their workforces and improving talent mobility (which has a significant effect on employee retention). Despite these advantages, companies are still using defunct training strategies that fail to educate – and often frustrate – employees.
For example, many companies use one-size-fits-all training programs that treat diverse employees interchangeably. They send out mass emails and provide boilerplate training videos, many of which have been stale and out of date for years. Although over three-quarters of employees say they’re willing to learn new skills or completely retrain, companies are squandering this opportunity with perfunctory and ineffective educational content. As companies contend with widespread employee disengagement and turnover rates, they can’t afford to alienate employees with tedious training content that belongs in a different decade.
Our colleague at NINJIO, CEO Dr. Shaun McAlmont, explains that the solution to this problem is the development and implementation of personalized learning plans that account for different skill levels, learning styles, and roles within the company. Here are the key ways companies can personalize their approach to employee education:
- Provide dynamic training content that’s relevant to each employee. The biggest problem with one-size-fits-all training is the fact that employees tend to stop paying attention when content doesn’t seem immediately applicable to what they do. This is why training content should always be customized on the basis of employees’ roles, strengths, weaknesses, behaviors, and other unique characteristics.
- Keep all employees engaged. Companies should always remember that their employees have no shortage of obligations and concerns, which is why it’s necessary to provide content that will capture and hold their attention. NINJIO uses 3 to 4-minute, professionally acted, and narrative-driven episodes which are released on a regular basis to make sure employees are up to date on the latest cyberthreats.
- Frequently reinforce what employees are learning. As Dr. McAlmont has discussed previously, annual or biannual training isn’t enough for employees to retain what they’ve learned. Employees need consistent reinforcement, as well as updates when new developments arise (such as emerging attack vectors in cybersecurity). Some employees will need more reinforcement than others.
Your employees are all unique individuals, and this should be reflected in the training they receive. Companies need to keep employees engaged while providing them with the information they need to do their best work, and personalized learning plans give them a way to accomplish both goals at the same time.