With the rapid growth of technology, even the impossible seems possible now. The advancement of technology has enabled easy access to media for various purposes, such as learning and entertainment. In May 2015, about 74 percent companies were reported using technology to train their employees. Majority (91 percent) companies found online training to be very useful when combined with other methods. On the same study, three-quarters respondents said that online training is essential for learning purposes.
For the last few years, online training has taken over the traditional learning approach that requires face-to-face meeting, offline training. While some companies believe that offline training remains the most effective method to help employees grow, online training is proven to have more advantages. For that reason, if you plan to choose online training for your employees, you should first know its benefits and drawbacks so you will not waste your time for nothing.
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Low budget – Online training is much cheaper as you don’t need to spend expenses for employee commute cost, lunch, equipment, or meeting room. Moreover, if your company has thousands of employees and is on tight budget, then online training is the best choice as it can reduce the cost invested for each employee.
Flexible and global – Nowadays, you can connect to WiFi everywhere for 24/7. This means that your employees can access the learning media anytime, anywhere they want to. If your company wants to train the same content or material to your employee regardless of their location, online training can bridge that. Consequently, you can reach as wide and many employee as you want to use the same methodology in learning.
Ease of resources – This can be one of the biggest advantages of online training. Unlike offline training that offers limited sources, online training will ease employees to access any kind of resources they need from across boundaries. As a result, employees can do self-learning with or without instructor as long as they have necessary materials.
Less interaction – When doing an online training, face-to-face interaction cannot be done all the time as employees might prefer to learn during their free time – which is usually outside the working hours. Moreover, employees’ tendency to underestimate the impact of not meeting their instructor directly will lead to monologue learning and eventually demotivate them. Employees also have different learning styles which will be difficult to manage when you choose online training. Consequently, it will reduce employees’ interest in learning certain subjects.
Lack of control – Employees with low motivation tend to fall behind because there is no specific allocation of time for learning process. A lack of routine and fixed schedule can be hard for employees who find it difficult to be committed in the learning process. Not to mention, you do not have a control over whether they attend the online class or not.
Isolated – As you do remote online training, instructor cannot answer questions directly. Online learning often doesn’t allow the instructor to answer bunch of questions at the same time outside the working hours, while many employees might prefer to learn after they get home. Consequently, the feeling of isolation will decrease employees’ motivation to learn.
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