Why Your Employees Need Mobile Training
Many training courses assume that employees are sitting at a desk. Here’s why that mindset is holding you back.
Many companies are invested in developing online training for their employees. However, if those companies are failing to consider how their training materials work on a mobile device, they could be under-delivering training materials. A mobile training website can deliver training videos and other materials that lets you reach learners wherever there are. Mobile training gives learners the freedom to access new and completed material at home, on the bus, or in a coffee shop.
When you use mobile training, learners can receive automated emails and push notifications reminding them to access or complete modules. It’s also a great tool to get the word out about similar topics that may interest the learner.
How Mobile Training Innovates the Learning Process
Mobile training provides flexibility, especially for learners who don’t have desk jobs. With this technology, you can make content available anytime, anywhere, as follows.
1. Accommodate All Working Environments
Whether learners work in a factory, an industrial kitchen, or at customer sites, mobile training can work for them. It allows employees to consume training materials on their break, during downtime, or while waiting for their next job.
Not every learner has access to a computer at work or during convenient learning times. Mobile training works well on tablets and smartphones that users can access whether they work in manufacturing, transportation, retail, or other service industries. Employees who aren’t at a desk may not be able to access training — unless it is mobile.
2. Use Microtraining to Make Learning More Efficient
Microtraining describes short content that learners can experience or review a little bit at a time. Through mobile training, microtraining reminders can pop up on devices throughout the day or week.
Video micro lessons make it faster and cheaper to develop and update course materials than offline or longer digital content. This methodology allows you to break up skills into subskills for a deeper understanding of each concept. For example, for a module covering kitchen safety, subskills might break out the safe operation of a meat slicer and how to clean a grill without getting burned.
Cutting up the material also negates the need for extraneous filler material between topics.
Tips for successful microtraining:
- Stick to short intervals of one to 15 minutes
- Exercises should test learners’ knowledge without being too hard
- Include a feedback loop for comments and questions between learners and a coach or mentor
3. Increase Employee Motivation
Some learners won’t like training because it takes too much time out of an already packed workday. Mobile learning lets employees finish training where and when they can. This could help improve their willingness to engage in critical training courses.
The flexible format of mobile training makes it easy to replace instructor-led training or complement traditional classroom learning.
4. Engage a Range of Content Formats
We’ve discussed before that learning styles are a myth, but what is true is that all learners prefer variety in their learning content. Mobile learning lets you combine content to appeal to learners of all backgrounds and preferences.
Examples of mixed media content that can easily be adapted for mobile use include:
- Reading modules
- Learning videos
- Internet research
- Collaborative chats
The only thing you need to be prepared to do is rigorously test the materials on a phone or tablet to ensure they function correctly.
5. Increase Productivity and Accessibility of Course Materials
The accessibility of mobile training gives learners an unlimited opportunity to access materials. By allowing employees to access mobile training on their own devices (BYOD), training teams expand the classroom to the commute home on the train or standing in line at a concert. Some learners retain information longer when digesting it in small chunks.
All this makes mobile training ideal for employers looking for effective ways to keep employees up to date on safety codes, new concepts in the industry or how to use new equipment.
6. Encourage Collaboration
When learners can interact, training can be more engaging. Mobile training websites include individual learning modules coupled with the ability to collaborate with other learners. Also, on tablets and smartphones, learners are one click away from sharing insights and knowledge with their peers on social media. When people talk about what they’re learning, it’s easier to retain the knowledge.
7. Align Mobile Training with Other Technology Trends
For many people, mobile devices are the primary tool to access the internet. It makes sense to shift technology from a desktop-only format to a mobile-friendly one by using responsive technology. This frees learners to access material across multiple platforms seamlessly.
Pre-Train Using Mobile Training
Classroom training is more productive when learners have exposure to topics prior to coming to class. If you work in a technical field that involves a lot of training, mobile preparation can give learners and edge before attending a rigorous courses.
By creating short introductory material, you can allow learners to absorb the material before they come to classroom training—part of the blended learning model of training. One of the benefits includes familiarity with the content. The more students know about the topic, the more time you can spend collaborating in the face-to-face sessions. Instructor-led sessions can then concentrate on demonstrations, questions, hands-on activities and feedback — all things that are easier in person than online.
Implement Post-Training via Spaced Practice
Mobile training enhances spaced practice of learned concepts. This approach spaces out training, giving workers time to gain exposure to concepts and put them in practice before moving on to the next topic. By retrieving the information and using the skills covered in a spaced practice module, learners can internalize the information over time. This improves retention rates and allows learners to refer back to mobile training material while they are mastering each skill.
Evaluate Field-Based Skills
Field training takes mobile training to where knowledge is needed the most — where work is performed. For example, consider training in a warehouse to use heavy equipment. While teaching someone to properly use the equipment, the trainer can refer to instruction videos that demonstrate the actions.
This also gives trainees a way to retrieve information learned on the jobs without asking and re-asking the same questions whenever they forget a few details.
Mobile training turns smartphones and tablets into training tools. Use mobile devices in your training strategy to:
- Show videos of complicated procedures
- List job performance criteria to allow supervisors to quickly evaluate a worker’s skill level
- Update evaluated tasks with comments in real-time
- Document instruction provided
- Note steps that still need work
- Document the employee’s performance so they can understand where they need the most improvement
- Commend workers for demonstrating proper execution of training tasks
By having learners and trainers sign off on training tasks and performance, you can create a digital record of new employees’ progress that can enhance future training sessions.
It’s easy to imagine how mobile training can revolutionize the way you design course curriculum for the greatest impact.
Mobile training lets employees access courses when and where it is convenient for them.
Mobile training makes it possible for learners to get to their courses anywhere at any time. Remote workers can attend training at their own pace and keep up with coworkers in the office without missing a beat. As you adopt effective ways to create meaningful content, make sure you provide them the support they need to complete their lessons.
Training can be a tremendous boon to employees, helping them build confidence by growing their capabilities. But most will not be able to achieve these goals without check-ins and encouragement from their supervisors. Even in this case, however, mobile can make it easier for managers to check in and make sure employees have what they need. By making training more readily available, you make support more available as well.