Blended learning has become the need of the hour today. In one of the studies by IBM, it was estimated that almost 40% of the classroom training cost is spent on traveling from one place to another. Also, in most work environment learning happens on the job through casual information sharing, experience sharing, observation and training from peers. This is called learning by performing or learning by doing.
Blended learning in training and development takes care of all these factors – it reduces the training cost and time and inculcates the concept of OJT (on-the-job training) and learning by doing. It streamlines resources, giving the best outcome from the available set of resources.
Blended learning is the mix of various learning methodologies such as online learning, recordings, videos, webinars, classroom learning, coaching, OJTs, assignments and projects, industry connect sessions etc. Training development turns out to be progressively successful when the right methodology merge with needs and learning styles of the learners.
Here are some of the benefits of a blending learning format in training and development:
- It helps to focus on the problem and find the best possible way to solve the problem considering participants and content in mind
- It boosts employee engagement and development
- It has a higher level of engagement by utilizing plenty of training techniques such as classroom, instructor led training, videos, audios etc.
- It is flexible as it allows employees to access the training at their pace using mobile phones or laptop devices anytime and anywhere
- It is financially savvy as it reduces training cost. It requires less but planned face to face interaction reducing the cost to travel. Obviously, web-based learning comes with its own costs; it requires different assets and skilled professions to structure high quality web-based learning module.
- It is quicker and more convenient to track the learning using LMS platforms
- It caters to the need and learning preferences of different types of learners
If learning experts simply start concentrating on improving individual’s performance than on only delivering the content, we can make a genuine blended learning model — one which will have higher impact.
Before implementing blended learning in training and development, it is very important to take nature of the work and preferences of your employees into consideration before designing any blended learning program. Conducting a survey within the people in order to figure out the requirements of the learners and the learning techniques they prefer is a suggested option.
In addition to that, it is essential to persuade your learners that the blended learning project will assist them to learn better and will ensure active participation. There needs to be proper communication with well-reasoned explanation (answering WIIFM – what’s in it for me) and motivating the learners which can play an important role in making the blended learning program successful.
Engage and empower your learners to become dynamic members in your organization’s success by putting them through well-structured learner-centric training program and a blended learning module.