Organisations are rapidly moving their in-person software training to virtual online delivery. In today’s climate where training budgets may be reduced and in-person training restricted, business leaders are quickly learning about VR’s potential to effectively and quickly upskill their employees. The evidence is clear: virtual training is re-shaping learning experiences and transforming teaching for good. Even VR training in ‘soft skills’ – such as skills in leadership and managing change – beats traditional training methods in effectiveness and cost-effectiveness.
Where’s it going wrong?
However. A consistent problem faced by organisations is their limited experience and expertise in virtual training. Often they may be tempted to just copy the content from traditional in-person training to a cloud server and try out Zoom (or some other standard Web conference application) to transmit the tutor’s screen. For presentation-only classes this may yield some success. But for hands-on training, where students need to move in parallel to the tutor and carry out exercises, this approach often hits problems and fails. Leading to ineffective learning and results, as well as a waste of time and money.
In a recent article, David Hand, Vice-President of Orasi, highlights the above and lists five useful top tips for those transferring software training online.
- Avoid using standard Web conferencing software like Zoom or Webex for hands-on training. They do not enable instructors to follow the student’s progress during practice exercises. Rather, replace or couple these systems with virtual training software that hosts specific training environments for all participants. Such as labs for instructors to teach and environments for students to practice exercises.
- Don’t depend on students to install the application software before the training. Delays often result at the start of the training because students do not have the right machine-level permissions to install the software, or – quite often – they forget to do it altogether! Rather, make use of a virtual training lab that students can easily log-on to remotely.
- Tailor the content and structure of the training to be virtual-friendly. Don’t attempt to just re-use existing training materials. Virtual training commonly does not cover the same scope of material to traditional in-house training; it also often requires a larger number of smaller sessions.
- Set up a training “Open House” before the training. It’s often assumed that students will immediately know what they’re doing in a new virtual training environment. This is a mistake. An “Open House” allows students to test out the new training environment, and remote connectivity, so you can confidently hit the ground running at the start of the actual training.
- Use virtual training software that promotes real-time interaction between trainer and student. For example, a software that enables both students to “raise their hand” electronically, and instructors to monitor students’ progress in real time. This makes up for the visual cues that are more easily seen in face-to-face training, and that are so essential to the success of any training session.
When transferring a hands-on training to a virtual online platform, do not treat it like a simple presentation. Factor in, and tailor, the training’s content, structure and platform to enable the all-important interaction between instructor and student. To maintain interest and achieve the knowledge transfer desired.
Read the full article here.
At Circus we pride ourselves on the virtual content we create. We revolutionise traditional training models using our team of content creation, UX (User Experience) and UI (User Interface). Turning real-world programmes into inclusive virtual experiences that are effective, scalable and fun.
Take a look at some of our most recent virtual training projects here.
If you’re looking for more information on virtual training, please contact our award-winning team today.