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How to Design eLearning Courses That Appeals to the Modern Workforce

The modern workforce is rapidly growing in these changing times. Employees have been shifting from business as usual to remote work and now hybrid models in the last few years. During this period, their schedules, abilities, and priorities have all changed. However, people don’t talk about their developing training needs due to the transition from traditional classrooms to eLearning and its divergent methods. Today’s organizations need to tweak their eLearning design to meet the needs and preferences of the modern workforce.

You might ask what modern employees want from their eLearning courses. And how can L&D teams workaround emerging changes to suit their eLearning design?

Let’s find out!

What the Modern Workforce Wants from eLearning Courses and Strategies

Regardless of the skills and concepts you’re trying to help employees learn, you need to ensure that your instructional design appeals to them. Modern learners are typically millennials or Gen Zs. So, they’ve grown up with the internet and are accustomed to high-quality websites and applications.

Therefore, the first thing you need to ensure is that you have a well-developed, tried and test course. Otherwise, learners take the course for granted no matter how good the content is. As far as the content, delivery, and training strategy goes, here’s a few factors the modern workforce desires from their eLearning course design:

Explore the real eLearning, its various avatars, essentials, and more. And find out how ready you are for it!

1. Empathy

Society programs modern employees to relate with one another and obtain a sense of belonging. Your employees are more likely to respond better to understanding and affection. You need to think like advertisers and leverage the power of empathy to ensure your training content speaks to your learners’ hearts and you should forecast their needs and wants.

Modern L&D professionals, including story boarders and eLearning developers, must strive to influence employees by creating a story-based narrative for eLearning courses. You can include a main character or avatar to guide them through their learning journey.

Adding these narrative elements gives employees the motivation to continue learning, especially if you design avatars they can identify with, such as managers, coaches, and experts. If you’ve never added avatars to your eLearning program before, then you can choose from tools such as Noah, Codebaby, Reallusion, and Media Semantics and design them.

You also want to make sure the narration is as natural as possible. The best way to do this is by using emotional responses and humor, so you don’t sound machinelike.

2. Collaboration Opportunities

For many years, the most significant disadvantage of eLearning has been isolation. However, with the growth of blended learning and social learning, trainers have used VILT sessions, microlearning videos, self-generated user material, and interactive elements to provide employees opportunities to collaborate.

Therefore, your eLearning design should consider that modern employees no longer just want quality training content. They want to collaborate with their peers.

3. DEI Content

With remote hiring and onboarding becoming the norm around the globe, employees want companies to include DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) into their learning strategy and avoid using references or terminologies that only a certain group of employees can understand. Therefore, you need to create training content that’s fit for a global audience.

Steer clear of anything that your learners of diverse races, religions, and cultures might consider offensive. You can use authoring tools, such as Lectora Inspire, Adobe Captivate, or Articulate Storyline, to further fuel your DEI initiatives and enable localized translations. This way, you also quicken your onboarding and your training processes.

4. Just-in-Time Information

Self-paced learning is a unique quality of eLearning enjoyed by the modern workforce. However, they’re not looking to go through arduous, detailed content to get the information they need. Therefore, they look at Google to access content swiftly. Watch out for employees picking up inaccurate information online and getting confused.

You need to address such issues in your eLearning design process. The best way to do this is by developing and updating microlearning videos, webcasts, and infographics and creating content that your learners can access anytime, anywhere.

5. Hands-On Learning

The modern workforce wants their organizations to make learning a part of the workflow. This way, they don’t have to set aside time to improve their abilities and performance at work. Considering the pace of operations in the post-pandemic landscape, today’s learners prioritize their work-life balance. Organizations need to understand this and enable transitional or hands-on learning.

If you want to train your staff on how to use a new software solution, then you need to host VILT sessions. You can also complement these sessions with self-regulated courses that employees can use to get answers and improve their digital literacy.

6. Material Rewards

The modern workforce no longer cares for extraneous rewards. Instead, they want their learning to provide tangible benefits and material rewards. According to Integrity-Data, nearly 70% of US workers are financially stressed and struggling with debt. Plus, the recent inflation crisis isn’t helping.

So, when employees get into a corporate training program, they expect it to have a manifest purpose. They expect their training to prepare them for a better-paying role and one that helps them improve their productivity so they can get a promotion. If you host a lengthy, boring session on policy updates, then your learners won’t be interested unless those changes affect their jobs.

The eLearning design process should answer the question “What’s in it for your learners?” because the modern workforce wants to be valued. Your program should help them see the big picture and it must motivate them to improve their abilities with attractive and achievable incentives.

7. Multiple Assessment Techniques

While some employees love quizzes there are others that might enjoy scenario-based sessions, such as mock trials. As no two learners are alike, you cannot rely on a single assessment strategy to determine learning outcomes or training effectiveness.

You need to segment your learners carefully and explore a variety of assessment tools to see which ones works best and that covers all learners. Ideally, your mix should contain both visual and audio components, such as games, branching scenarios, online group collaboration projects, and task-based simulations, to name a few. These qualitative assessment tools are easy to design as long as you have an effective authoring tool, like Articulate Storyline 360 and iSpring.

The Bottom Line

So, there you have it. Seven considerations L&D teams need to address and integrate with their eLearning course design to make sure corporate training is even more appealing to the modern workforce. With these valuable tips, you can drastically improve your training effectiveness and learning outcomes also your eLearning courses become highly sustainable.

With the business world rapidly advancing and changing, you need to ensure that your training strategies meet the needs of your workforce. Here’s an eBook that helps you learn about eLearning and what it can do for your organization. It walks you through the basics and presents evidence that can help you persuade your decision-makers to consider implementing eLearning in your organization. Grab your copy now!

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