So, now what?
You’ve finalized all the eLearning details for your organization, except one: How to get employee buy-in.
I’ve worked in offices where training was mandatory and accepted grudgingly and with plenty of grumbling in the classroom. You may be familiar with that mindset and don’t want to face it again with eLearning.
Managers must buy in first for any project like this to be successful. It’s not enough to get rubber stamp approval, but they must be convinced of the importance, value, time and money saving effects of eLearning. Have your facts and stats ready to make the case for eLearning and get your boss on side.
Once that pivotal step is complete, it’s time to break the news to the staff. The best way to do this is to be upfront with them.
Let the employees know that it’s coming and give them a timetable and deadline for any mandatory courses.
Promote the courses, give employees reasons why this training will be good for them. Describe the benefits of this training: skills development, the ability to do their jobs easier and better, and the potential for advancement with their newfound skills.
When you get staff on board, there is more that’s incumbent upon you to ensure this training is a success. They are simple steps and very important but easy to overlook: Give employees time to do courses but also have the courses available for them at any time. Also, and this goes back to when you are making your initial decision upon which LMS and courses to purchase, make sure the courses work properly and easily on multiple platforms and devices. Finally, have good content that’s relevant and engaging and maybe even includes a few games.
Sweeten the pot for employees, give them something to look forward to at the end of their training, even more than the knowledge and self-improvement they will gain. Consider giving out completion certificates for each course or perhaps digital badges that can be added to an e-portfolio.
Once they begin the courses, follow up with your employees to monitor progress and answer any questions.
Introducing eLearning to the workplace is a type of change, so change management techniques like these ones below are helpful to get employee buy-in.
A positive attitude is crucial when dealing with change.
Stay focused on the change itself and what you can do to manage it. Try not to worry about things that are out of your control.
Change will be much easier if you try to embrace it. Think of ways that you can adapt or things that you can do to make the change easier.
Put the changes in context with the rest of your schedule, and your approach to work. If you try to look at this change in logical fashion, it may become less personal and easier to handle.
If you anticipate change in the early stages and modify expectations accordingly, it will be much easier to deal with the change than it is in the later stages, when things are already underway and you have less opportunity to influence.
As a training coordinator or HR manager or whatever your position happens to be, the biggest thing you can do is be there for employees if they have concerns or complaints about eLearning. If they feel pushed sometimes all it takes to help them past their misgivings is a sympathetic ear and some understanding. It’s nice to know that someone’s listening.