How To Master The Art Of Application Learning
All companies, ranging from small businesses to large corporations, utilize a variety of web and desktop applications on a daily basis. However, problems arise every time companies want to incorporate new applications into regular use, as employees may require extensive training to learn all the functions and features.
With more applications being released every day, it’s only becoming more important to fine tune training methods. By 2017, Gartner, Inc. says 25 percent of organizations will own an app store for desktop and mobile applications. Despite this, many companies are still using traditional methods for application learning. Not only does is this waste of resources, old practices can require hours of training, which has exactly the opposite effect on productivity as is intended.
Support pages, corporate articles, and long training videos all have one thing in common: They expect users to learn how to use an application without giving learners any opportunity for practice. This makes web and desktop application learning almost impossible. Learners have no chance to retain knowledge unless they utilize their new skills soon after training. However, traditional methods often don’t require learners to recall material until weeks or months later.
Other problems with traditional methods are time and resources. For example, in 2013, organizations spent $1,208 on each employee for 31.5 hours of training time, according to Association for Talent Development. This was a 15 percent increase from the previous year and the highest in seven years, according to statistics from Forbes. The good news is that by switching to more modern methods, it is possible to reduce expenditures and time spent training; especially for application learning.
Old Methods Vs. eLearning For Application Learning
As corporate eLearning continues to grow, ever more businesses are discovering the potential to train employees in web and desktop applications using online practices. Around 77 percent of organizations in the U.S. now use online corporate training, and this number is expected to grow by 13 percent per year in 2016 and 2017. Here’s why:
With eLearning application training, attendees of a course can learn material at any time and in any place. There is no need to dedicate an entire conference room to training nor for a group of learners to all take time out of their schedules at the same moment. This can be a huge cost-saver for companies with a global workforce, where numerous workers require the same application skills. Plus, as learners can take a course anywhere, including at home, they can fit training into their day at convenient times, even taking breaks from the course and returning later.
With eLearning, there is no need for a trainer to be present. Once you’ve set up the course, all that’s necessary is for someone to be available via email to answer any questions learners may have. Eliminating the need to send trainers to various locations is another way to reduce expenses.
- Refresher courses.
You’ll never need to schedule refresher courses, which can be a waste of time for those regularly using an application. The original course and practice tests will remain around for learners to use as needed to refresh their memory.
It’s easy to adapt your training program to include changes in new versions of applications, which keeps material relevant for new learners. Plus, you can send updated sections of the course to past learners to keep them up to date.
- Delivery speed.
Studies suggest that eLearning reduces training time by 25 to 60 percent compared to traditional methods. This is due to several causes, including: A lack of opening introductions and a wrap up, the opportunity for learners to skip information they already know, and the chance for fast learners to move through material quickly. On the flip side of the third point, learners who find material more difficult can take their time without slowing down the rest of the group, which ensures that everyone learns how to use applications to their full advantage.
One of the best ways to learn is by using VisualJet, a tool that allows you to design application learning yourself. Based around screenshot technology, you won’t need to install any plugins or programs to create simulations for any application.
To gain the most out of VisualJet, you need to create application simulations to demonstrate application features. The process is quite straight forward, start by inputting a question that describes what you want users to learn, then select the product (application), add appropriate tags to help with search, and add screenshots to guide users through the actions they need to take. You can also use tools crop out and blur unnecessary features in screenshots to make processes more obvious.
Once you’ve created several instructions for the same application, learners can take interactive, in-application tests to practice. Simulations allow users to learn much faster than traditional methods through the use of repetition, which has been found in recent studies to strengthen neural connections and build memories.