Posted December 17, 2019
Virtual training is a learning methodology that enables organizations to access interactive, instructor-led training online. Virtual training may not be a perfect fit for every company in all circumstances; other training formats like workshops, boot camps, webinars, and more still have their place. But for some employers, virtual training can make critical skills development accessible in a convenient, budget-friendly format. And it’s a training option that’s rapidly evolving and improving. So, what’s big in virtual training today?
Virtual training is particularly popular with organizations that need to reach dispersed workers. With flexible working options like telecommuting more common today, more and more companies must contend with this logistical issue when planning training programs. As a result, options like virtual training have taken off. The Global Synchronous E-learning Market Report 2018 estimates the global market for virtual training will grow by over 28% over the next five years – an astounding growth rate in such a short time.
Virtual training as an employee benefit
The National Research Business Institute says that 23% of employees will leave their employer over a lack of skills development opportunities. Workers want to be able to grow in their roles and advance in their careers, and training is a key part of that. Virtual training options can serve as an important employee benefit to recruit and retain top talent – and it can do double duty by helping them become more effective workers.
Incorporating advanced technologies
Some online training formats, like webinars, have been around for a while. Virtual training, by contrast, stands out in its modern ability to leverage advanced technologies to actively involve students in the learning process. Many virtual classrooms use interactive activities and exercises that turn students from passive observers of the lesson into active participants in their own learning. In some cases, virtual training even incorporates “virtual reality” (VR) simulations that can recreate complex scenarios. Think flight simulators, or simulating surgical procedures. Note, however, that “virtual training” and “virtual reality (VR) training” are not identical. VR training is simply a potential component of virtual training options.
Focus on ROI
Sometimes training-related travel expenses make sense, particularly for advanced or in-depth skills development; but in other scenarios virtual and online training formats can yield fantastic cost savings. In fact, online, web-based, virtual training has seen tremendous ROI in many organizations. Consider:
- IBM found that every $1 spent on online training resulted in a $30 productivity boost;
- Ernst & Young saved 35% through online learning formats; and
- Microsoft reduced per-learner costs by $303 through eLearning options.
For more information on online learning, see our article “What is Virtual Training and Why Should Companies Take It Seriously?”
About Hurley Write, Inc.
Hurley Write, Inc., a certified women-owned small business (WBENC and WOSB), Historically Underutilized (HUB), and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE), has been designing and teaching customized onsite and online technical, business, and scientific writing courses for over 30 years. We also develop and teach specialty courses, such as how to write proposals and standard operating procedures (SOPs) and deviation and investigation reports, and how to prepare and give great presentations. Links: MarketWatch.com, IBM, Google Books, Microsoft, Internal