Why Online Courses Are A Superior Training Platform for Business.
It is important for businesses to invest in the professional development and on-going training of staff, but it often comes at a cost; time taken away from business operations to attend classes is one factor, the other is the financial commitment to course fees.
Despite these costs, there are ten obvious benefits to investing in professional development and on-going training: higher employee productivity; innovation; higher staff morale; increased staff retention; enhanced work quality and performance; remain up-to-date with industry and technological advances; stay abreast of the competition; fill skill gaps as they arise; better customer service and risk management.
When it comes to considering the cost to business, it is important to note that the above are also factors that directly impact a business’s bottom line. However, as previously mentioned, professional development and a commitment to the on-going training of staff is expensive, not only in terms of education costs but also in lost work hours as employees make time for study. As such, it’s reasonable that management would have concerns about the recurring cost to the business. But businesses should never stand still, and neither should employees, as quality education and training are paramount to a business’s continued success. So, what’s the solution?
A growing number of quality online training platforms, or e-Learning initiatives, make it an excellent time to harness the power of technology to educate, inform and entertain employees at a fraction of the cost of a traditional learning environment. The benefits of online courses are numerous, but ten of the most important include variety; flexible delivery; unlimited access and support; credibility; exceptional value; all-inclusive fee structure; student satisfaction; easily accessible information; a personalised learning experience and a comfortable learning environment. Let’s look at these benefits and how they contribute to the success of business in more detail.
Why Invest in Staff Training
1. Higher employee productivity
Investing in employee development and training is essential to the long-term future growth of a business, as it promotes the delivery of higher quality products and services. A business can motivate its staff by investing in their career and professional development; when employees feel motivated they work harder. As a result, a business can expect to reap the benefits of an investment in training. For one thing, a productive and motivated employee has greater autonomy over their job, needing less support from supervisors and freeing up senior management for more important tasks.
2. Improved innovation
In today’s competitive business environment innovating is imperative. Businesses are more likely to innovate and stay abreast of change through the employment of an educated and highly skilled workforce. This is only possible through a commitment to continual staff training and development. Dan Auerbach, psychotherapist and Director of Employee Assistance, understands the importance of the on-going education and training of employees. “By acquiring skills, employees become more capable of performing new tasks and coming up with creative solutions. Staff are empowered to become innovators and productivity champions, benefiting your customers, your ability to develop new revenue streams and to develop internal efficiencies,” he says.
3. Higher staff morale
If staff morale is high a business will endure fewer episodes of absenteeism, which drag down profits, as employees are engaged. Engaged employees show up more often, stay at work longer and take fewer sick and personal leave days. One of the best ways to keep employees engaged is through investing in their professional development. “Investing in staff development demonstrates to staff that they are valued, improving loyalty and morale,” says Auerbach.
4. Increased staff retention
The cost of hiring new staff is notoriously expensive. A recent report in workplaceinfo.com.au states that if an employee on an average salary ($60,000) leaves an organisation within 12 months, the cost of hiring a new employee is upwards of 55 per cent of this annual salary. If this same employee leaves within 12 months, add $6,400. So, it makes sense to put an emphasis on training and retaining staff.
Auerbach says staff development leads to increased retention, lowering recruitment costs for a business. “A business may even attract new talent with a reputation for investing in staff,” he explains. A focus on the training and development of staff is particularly important to attract and retain millennials (those born between 1981 and 2000); new research suggests that this generation is more likely to switch jobs, request a salary increase and lose interest in their job faster than past generations. It’s worth noting that by 2025, 75 per cent of the workforce will be millennials, making retention strategies essential to engaging this large demographic going forward.
5. Enhanced work quality and performance
A business should encourage its employees to value their contribution to the business; by investing in their continued education, work quality will improve. “It goes without saying that professional development training will allow staff to develop skills that will improve the overall quality of their work. Beyond technical skills, staff may also acquire general workplace skills, such as: teamwork and collaboration; time management; leadership; communication; and how to recognise and manage stress,” says Auerbach.
6. Keep up with industry changes and technology advances
Industry and technological advancements are constantly shifting. A business should ensure its employees are up-to-speed with new technology and industry trends. A one-off training session will be important when an employee begins using a new system or program, but it is also essential to keep these skills current. This may involve the implementation of on-going training sessions so that all staff are competent and comfortable with programs necessary for their role in the business. This will, as a result, improve proficiency and efficiency of business operations.
7. Stay abreast of the competition
If a business is part of a highly competitive industry, and that’s most businesses, it pays to be aware of how to compete. One way is to ensure employees are equipped with the best training to stay competitive. As an example, if a competitor is using a new software program that improves productivity, this business will be at a competitive advantage. This new software will require initial and on-going training for staff and will come at a cost; however, long-term, the business that invests in training will have the most productive workforce and as a result profit margins increase.
8. Fill skill gaps in the workforce as they arise
A business may not always make the correct hiring decision, as recruiting is an inherently complex process. If a business hires an employee only to discover they have a skill gap that will impact negatively on the operation of a business, it can be costly. Unless, the same business has an easily accessible education and training platform, such as eLearning, which enables this skill gap can be closed quickly and cost-effectively.
Skill gaps can arise for several other reasons, including the introduction of new technology, systems or processes, and the same eLearning initiative can help a business recover.
9. Better Customer Service
Customer satisfaction can make or break a business. As such, staff training across all areas of business operation is paramount to better customer relations. “Customers are more satisfied with their experience when served by motivated, confident and knowledgeable staff. Greater customer satisfaction enhances a firm’s reputation and improves customer retention,” says Auerbach.
10. Risk Management
It’s important to protect a business from financial harm. Auerbach recommends training and development to reduce the likelihood of compensation and staff turnover. “Improving staff knowledge and awareness in areas like mental health, bullying and harassment, and other occupational health and safety topics reduces the likelihood of an incident as well as ensuring the safety and wellbeing of employees.”
10 Advantages of Online Courses for Employee Training
When a business selects an eLearning platform to train and educate staff, the range of online courses and industry choices are many. Australian Online Courses offer a wide range of highly specialised courses and industry content to help with almost any business-training requirement.
2. Flexible Delivery
Online courses are delivered via an innovative eLearning platform that enables students to work outside of business hours; so a business doesn’t incur disruption to operation. This is also of value to staff as they can complete the course at their own pace and when it is convenient for them.
3. Unlimited Access and Support
There are no timeframes and no due dates when a business enrols their employees in an online course with Australian Online Courses. Plus, access to tutor support is available seven days a week. Students study at their own pace with no limitations on when or how often they access to course materials online.
Australian Online Courses has been delivering quality education to business since 2008. When a business engages with Australian Online Courses for the professional development and training of its staff, management can rest assured that all courses are industry-relevant. This means course materials are both current and relevant to the business’s industry.
5. Exceptional Value
As a business-to-business service, Australian Online Courses operate to provide the best value to business customers. Payment plans start from as little as $25 a week or there are significant discounts for upfront payment. In addition, businesses save on travel and accommodation costs when choosing online courses; employees will not need to attend a physical learning environment.
6. All-Inclusive Fees
There are no hidden costs when a business enrols its employees in an online, professional development program with Australian Online Courses. Printed materials are not necessary for the completion of courses as all learning materials are online. Student services, unlimited tutor support, all learning materials and assessment are all-inclusive, so a business can be confident that the upfront cost is the total cost.
7. Student Satisfaction
Australian Online Courses has an excellent reputation with current and past students. Through the collection of student satisfaction surveys, it is evident that the delivery and support students receive via the innovative eLearning platform is excellent.
“Hi to all my tutors! I just want to thank you for all your assistance with my course. I have loved it and am hoping to do another course in future. Thank you, again! – A. Worley, NSW.
“I just finished the Certificate of Medical Reception and Office Administration. I really enjoyed it! I now have the confidence to apply for jobs after being out of the workforce. Thanks, Liz for all your support.” – F. Hayden, QLD.
8. Easy Access to Information
A dedicated student support team give clear instructions on how to access all course materials, so a business has no need to become involved in the online learning process – it’s all taken care of. Australian Online Courses understand business customers are time-poor and training staff shouldn’t take away from business operations.
9. Personalised Training Experience
A business-centric focus means Australian Online Courses can tailor online course materials to meet the learning needs of a business’s employees. This is an important aspect in choosing an education provider, as course materials and support requirements need to be as individual as the business it serves to achieve the best possible learning outcome.
10. Comfortable Learning Environment
Online courses are also the preferred delivery to ensure all personality-types are accommodated in the learning environment; it doesn’t matter whether an employee identifies as extroverted or introverted, the eLearning platform delivers. Plus, there’s no dress code for online courses, so if employees are most comfortable learning at home in their pyjamas, that’s fine too.
The Right Choice for Your Business
We’re passionate about education at Australian Online Courses and pride ourselves on delivering quality training that’s highly employer-centric. We do this by offering a strong and engaged support network of dedicated tutors and customer service staff who directly support a business and its staff to achieve the right learning outcomes.
When you chose our online courses to invest in the professional development and on-going training of staff you can rest assured that we equip your employees with the knowledge and skills to enhance your business’s productivity and future success.
Contact one of our friendly customer service staff to create a plan for your business’s professional development and training requirements via an innovate, industry-approved eLearning platform today. You’ll be glad you did: and so will your staff!