video learningVideo is exploding as a medium of training delivery. In fact, 95% of companies use some video for learning, according to the Brandon Hall Group 2015 Video for Learning Pulse Survey. When we consider the types of training available, video has the potential to be some of the most engaging, if used properly.

Someone recently asked a question in our membership community about the validity of mandatory training, and the response was pretty simple on its surface: mandatory training isn’t going away, but that doesn’t mean the organization has to deliver it in an unappealing way.

I can still remember the first supervisor training session I sat through. It involved approximately 12 hours of watching videotapes where lawyers told us all of the things on the “do not” list for managers. At the end of the session I remember thinking to myself, “Why in the world would anyone voluntarily participate in this?”

It all ties together—the training, the video, and the engagement factor. I was putting together a report and ran into some interesting data on engagement that surprised me.

Training for Engagement?

In our 2015 Training Survey, the number one reason for a change in the quantity of learning delivered was to improve employee engagement. But the question we must ask is this: is your training truly engaging your employees? Are they walking out of those training sessions feeling buoyed by the learning opportunity and content? Or, if we’re going to be honest, are they having a less-than-satisfactory experience with the training?

In our 2015 Employee Engagement Pulse Survey, 66% of respondents said their LMS was important to the organization’s engagement strategy. However, if we are simply using it as a way to track course completions, then we’re certainly not making full use of the technology.

This is a problem, and it isn’t going to get better without effort. But there is hope. Let’s look at video as a potential solution.

Video’s Role in Learning

Consider this: when most people are working on a manual task and need guidance, they pull up a search engine and head to YouTube for instant support. People crave that same type of guidance in the workplace, whether you provide it or not. Sure, they can find some generic information online, but for specifics about your customers, your policies, or even your culture and values, do your employees have a way to learn about those using internal resources?

One of my long-time friends used to work in a dual learning/HR role for a large technology company. Employees were consistently asking questions about career paths, mentoring, and other similar topics. So one day he grabbed his cell phone and started shooting high definition video with managers, a minute at a time. He published each of those videos on the internal network so employees could learn about various growth opportunities, “meet” key influencers, and grow their awareness of the organization.

How much did that cost? He used his company-provided phone. He took one-minute videos. The upload process took less than 10 minutes per session. So for far less than what one would think at first glance, he helped to develop an internal resource that was viewed by, and helped, thousands of his coworkers around the world.

Video can be that simple. Or it can be incredibly complex, complete with animations, logic branching, and full production-quality shoots. Either way, it’s available at a moment’s notice to improve performance, and possibly engagement, for your employees.

Ben Eubanks, Learning AnalystBrandon Hall Group
@beneubanks

Ben Eubanks

Ben Eubanks, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is an HR professional and industry influencer. His experience working as a leader in the human resources field has provided him with a broad range of experience encompassing smaller organizations, government contracting firms, and the nonprofit sector. He has hands-on experience with various HR disciplines, including recruiting, benefits, employee relations, and compensation.

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