More students are enrolling in online courses than ever before. And for businesses, the prospect of online training is equally appealing. Instead of trapping employees in a room for an hour or more, you can deliver training whenever it’s convenient for your employees.
But is it the right fit for your business?
Here, we’re taking a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of online safety training to help you make the right call for your business.
Online safety training used to be a privilege of the specialized few. Nowadays, online safety training is exploding in popularity, and for good reason.
From a teaching perspective, one of the biggest advantages of online safety training is the dramatic reduction in downtime. Unfortunately, when your workers are in a classroom for safety training, they’re unable to do their jobs. Plus, it may be difficult to get all of your employees in one room at the same time, which means your EHS team has to take time out of their schedules to offer training in shifts.
Online safety training removes these barriers. EHS teams can set the curriculum and deadline and allow workers to complete the training as it’s convenient. That way, they can focus on productivity during their shifts and complete training when they have time to pay attention.
Plus, online safety training allows for greater accountability for learning performance. In a huge room of employees, it’s easy for employees in the back row to goof off or tune out. In online training, every employee is individually assessed on their learning, which means there’s no classroom to hide behind.
That said, online training does come with a few key disadvantages as well.
For one thing, it’s victim to the five downsides of virtual working:
- Lack of social interaction
- Lack of in-person verbal communication
- Lack of established trust through personal interaction
- Cultural mishaps
- Weakened team spirit through reduced communication
Basically, what online learning gains in productivity, it loses in interpersonal engagement. It’s hard to recreate the effect of working together in a classroom, establishing trust and rapport through face-to-face conversations.
In addition, not all businesses are technologically equipped to offer online safety training – or at least, not effectively. And even if your business is equipped to offer it, you have to ensure that employees at home have the technological access necessary to complete the training on their own time.
Also, there are some learning experiences that online learning simply cannot recreate. You can offer videos of hands-on learning, but it isn’t quite the same as having employees practice a procedure with their own two hands. This leaves hands-on workers at a critical disadvantage in a digital learning environment.
Is Online Safety Training the Right Fit?
Is online safety training the right fit for your business? At the end of the day, that depends on your business. If you’re ready to truly invest in a quality learning environment and make the most of your resources to ensure employees learn effectively, online safety training may be a worthwhile investment.
If you’re in the market for training software to see if it fits your business needs, you’ve come to the right place. Make sure to check out our industry-leading training software to see how we can assist your EHS team. And if you want to see our software in action, get in touch today to let us know how we can help.