You know on some level your eLearning efforts provide real value to your company, but it can also be easy to lose sight of this fact when you’re in the day-to-day slog of making it happen. It’s always good to remind yourself of just how valuable your work is. One aspect many learning professionals don’t often consider is the vital role their efforts can play in workplace engagement and retention. This is important, so hear me out.
The Cost of Disengaged Employees
It’s no secret that low employee morale and disengagement are perennial problems in corporate America. Gallup polls have documented this issue with depressing precision, revealing that 70% of American workers are disengaged from their jobs (source). And it’s not because they don’t want to be engaged. Most employees want to be the best they can be for their employers, but they need a lot of support to make that happen. If they don’t get that support, then engagement, morale, and retention all suffer.
What do these problems cost businesses across the nation? Estimates vary, of course, but turnover is a serious drain on the country’s economic engine. After all, the US Department of Labor’s conservative estimate is that the cost of replacing exiting employees is something like 30% of their first-year earnings. On the larger scale, some believe that turnover siphons off as much as $5 trillion from the economy each year. That hurts.
Workplace Engagement Through eLearning
One of the best ways to keep employees engaged and thriving in your company is by providing them with the learning and training they need to excel in their positions. When workers feel like the company doesn’t care enough to provide top-notch learning and training for their success, you can bet they will soon become a part of the disengaged 70%, which makes your learning programs a vital component of workplace engagement. Let this inspire you to up your eLearning game. I’ve written about all kinds of ways to do this, and you can use these articles to refresh your ongoing mission to create learning and training programs that truly engage learners:
- Writing. It’s surprising how much eLearning content suffers from poor writing. Remember that eLearning Content Needs Great Writing, and there are lots of tips and strategies that can help you sharpen your writing skills for better learning content. Check out Writing for eLearning Part I: Concise and Compelling, Writing for eLearning Part II: Clarity, and Writing for eLearning Part III: 6 Tactical Tips.
- Gamification. Let’s face it – boring eLearning and training isn’t going to help engage anyone. Gamification is one way to add new and exciting aspects to your learning programs. You can even Gamify Your Basic Skills Training to make it more engaging.
- Humor. Everyone loves to laugh, and the use of humor in your eLearning content can help engage learners. But it can also be tricky to get it right. Learn more on how to handle this by reading Humor in eLearning: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
- Evaluation. The only way to know how effective and enjoyable your eLearning programs are is by engaging in robust evaluation. One of the best and most thorough ways to do this is using the Kirkpatrick Four-Level Evaluation Model. I did a whole series of articles about this, beginning with eLearning Evaluation: Kirkpatrick’s Four-Level Model. It continues with Level 1 Evaluation for eLearning: Reaction, More Questions for Level 1 eLearning Evaluation, Level 2 Evaluation for eLearning: Learning, Level 3 Evaluation for eLearning: Behavior, and concludes with Level 4 Evaluation for eLearning: Results.
- Analytics. Big data has an increasingly important role to play, not just to help document the ROI of eLearning, but to improve your eLearning programs. The Holy Grail in this regard is Predictive Analytics for eLearning.
- Design. Effective design is essential to your eLearning efforts, and it’s worth identifying and adopting A Model for Effective eLearning Design.
With the information provided in these articles, you’ll put yourself on a solid path to creating eLearning that boosts workplace engagement, improves morale, and retains the workers your company needs to achieve its business goals.