5 Signs Your Corporate Training Program is Failing

Remember that impending sense of doom when your corporate training deadlines are approaching? The inbox is piling up, you already have tasks pending, and now there’s mandatory training to do. No matter where you are in the world, the one thing universal about corporate training is how employees react when assigned a corporate exercise.  

Why does no one like compliance training? The answer lies in the way we approach and design the program. In 2022, corporate training expenditure in the US exceeded the USD 100 billion mark. Yet, research shows that employees forget approximately 90% of their training in just a month.

Most corporate training programs are structured today as something to get out of the way before real work can begin. Not only is such an approach causing corporations to lose ROI on their training investment but in some professions, such attitudes can also cause real harm.

On the upside, it is possible to create meaningful ways to train your employees. It begins with recognizing the ways in which your training program does not deliver. Let’s see what signs you need to be on the lookout for that point to a failing corporate training program.

1. The training is burdensome for your employees

If your employees treat corporate training programs as a thing to get off their to-do list, chances are they are not learning much from it. One reason why employees feel burdened by training is due to the lack of clarity when it comes to learning objectives. If they don’t understand how a particular course can help their professional development, there is very little motivation to get it done. 

On top of that, many training programs are not properly planned to factor in the audience they are meant to be for. Learners generally avoid text-heavy materials and respond more positively to visual aids. Many younger employees prefer a more hands-on approach to learning as compared to their older counterparts. In such cases, adding interactive or gamified elements can improve employee performance.

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2. Retention levels are low 

As we mentioned earlier, the forgetting curve for corporate training programs is steep. While it is impossible to obtain perfect retention levels, there is still much room for improvement. 

Many workplaces spend a lot of time creating courses but give little thought to evaluation. Admittedly, the idea of sitting for an exam can be quite unappealing to employees. To address this, it is important to do away with the traditional understanding of testing and create activities based on real-life scenarios that require your learners to put their knowledge to the test. 

Your employees would generally be more perceptive to small, intermittent exercises that help them put their recently acquired skills into practice. Reinforcing learning via microlearning can help employees retain what they learn without feeling overwhelmed.

Additionally, organizations must recognize that learning does not simply end with one course, rather it is a continuous process. It is imperative that courses come with a post-training plan or summary, which employees can refer to whenever they need to refresh their memory. 

3. A mismatch between training and on-the-job skills 

Organizations must also factor in the reality that a one-size-fits-all approach is detrimental to your employees. A company-wide uniform approach to training does not impart meaningful skills to employees across different departments. Creating customized training for respective departments is a much better approach instead.

On top of that, there can often be a disconnect between what you are training your employees for, and what skills they actually need to perform in their roles. This is where it is important to take in feedback from experienced employees who have many years of experience under their belt, and can provide insight into what on-the-job skills new employees must be taught.

Additionally, it is important to take stock of the must-haves and the nice-to-haves. The must-haves should dictate training that is mandatory, and this could vary from department to department. Other skills can be taught on an optional basis in order to ensure that the employees are spending their time and attention on learning the core skills first.

4. There is a disconnect between the trainees and their mentors

Not having the right support when going through corporate training can be detrimental to the learners’ morale and impact their training at the same time. Many organizations fail to connect trainees with the right mentor who could help guide them through the process based on their personal experiences. Despite connecting employees with their mentors, they can often hesitate to reach out.

Organizations must work to break down these barriers so that the flow of learning is smooth and uninterrupted. One great way of doing so is by making training a social exercise. With the help of discussion forums, trainees can connect with their mentors and peers without any hesitation. 

5. Lack of feedback and validation

One of the signs of a failing corporate training program is when trainees don’t receive personalized feedback on their performance. Receiving scores from an automated grader is not sufficient and cannot be a substitute for direct evaluation or feedback. Ideally, this feedback should be from mentors as well as peers. 

To add to that, feedback from the trainees on the overall quality and usefulness of the training is equally important. Corporations that fail on this end up with training programs that are out of touch with their target audience and end up having negative consequences for both the organization as well as the trainees.

Keeping Your Corporate Training Up with the Times

Creating an impactful corporate training program is no easy feat. Juggling a myriad of factors and keeping up with the latest workplace learning trends at the same time can be challenging. However you choose to pursue it, a good rule of thumb is to take a moment and put yourself in the learner’s place. Everything else will fall into place.

Don’t despair if you don’t have the time to do that! Edly is here to help. Our tried and true online learning tools are built for today’s workforce. Our corporate LMS comes equipped with all that you need to create a meaningful learning experience for your employees. To get more information about our corporate training solutions, feel free to get in touch and request a free demo!


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