Why User Experience Design Is Important For Training Your Employees

Why User Experience Design Is Important For Training Your Employees
Summary: Design and User Experience (UX) are extremely important for employee development. One of the core principles of designing custom eLearning programs for your employees is the user experience. User experience design affects the level of user engagement and the accessibility of the eLearning experience for the user.

Training Your Employees: Why User Experience Design Is Important 

Corporate training is becoming more and more important in today’s business environment. Why? Because it has a direct impact on employee work engagement as well as retention, especially during the employee onboarding. According to a recent survey by BambooHR, one-third of 1,000 respondents said they had quit a job within six months of starting it – meaning the average company is losing 1 in 6 of their new hires each month throughout the first three months. Furthermore, those that left within the first six months said “receiving clear guidelines to what my responsibilities were” and “more effective training” would have helped them stay committed to the job position. As such, it’s important that corporate training programs are not only informative, but engaging for the user so they can better learn their roles and growth within their careers. So, how successful is your corporate training program and how can you improve? The answer lies in better user experience design.

Let’s take a deeper look into how design and user experience can greatly impact your corporate training programs and how you can best implement them into your training strategies.

The Importance Of Design

Good design in eLearning-based training methods is extremely important for properly engaging the user and correctly conveying important information in the case of employee training programs. Consider implementing rich media, that can range from graphics to audio and video, into your training methods. This can help with employee engagement and information retained. In today’s given work environment, rich media have become a must for organizational training.

Furthermore, when it comes to design, a good eLearning course should be split into multiple sections, each dealing with a specific topic. Microlearning is a good example of this, as this technique teaches and delivers content to employees in small, specific bursts. It not only keeps employees engaged, but helps them achieve a specific behavior and/or objective. More importantly, better design through microlearning can open the door to personalization and autonomy, which can help the employee feel valued in the organization. Ron Zamir, President of AllenComm, explains:

“Microlearning can empower learners and drive productivity by expanding access to focused, relevant content. With the large amount of information employees are expected to know to be effective at work, microlearning helps by letting learners memorize only what they need to and easily look up the rest.” Furthermore, empowering an employee not only helps with the work they produce, but retention rates and the organization’s bottom line.

Another example is a training course for a graphic design program split into sections for setting up the program, using the interface, using the simpler tools, using the advanced tools, and troubleshooting problems.

As seen in the example above, a good design for an employee eLearning program would start by introducing the employee to the tools or other items they'll be learning about. Then, it will introduce them to basic functionality, advanced functionality, and procedures for any problems they might encounter. This will ensure that they know how to utilize what they have at their disposal, and how they can deal with any problems that may arise. The course could also be split into more sections, giving more detailed training for the different features of the tools or other items or services or more details on procedures relating to the item. Plus, with split up sections, it can help reduce information overload, which can be a big issue with training employees.

As such, the goal of any eLearning course is to educate the learner on the purpose of the tools or items, how to use them, regulations and procedures relating to them, and how to deal with problems that may arise. The eLearning program should be designed around those goals. Or, alternatively, if you're looking to accomplish different goals with the course, then it should be designed around those goals.

The Importance Of The User Experience

Additionally, one of the most important things to consider during custom eLearning development is user experience (UX). UX defines the accessibility of the eLearning course and greatly affects the level of learner engagement. Good user experience design is extremely important for eLearning because if the learner's level of engagement is too low, they could finish the program without having learned what the course set out to teach them. Furthermore, bad user experience opens the door to negative perceptions of your brand and the overall efficiency of the training. Maximo Castagno of Beezy explains:

“Ensuring that employees are interested in your brand, enthusiastic, and invested in its success is key to growth. Workers are your most important assets, especially in a knowledge-based environment where fresh ideas and creativity are essential. Keeping your colleagues engaged and interested in their company with a great UX will not only make their working environment more enjoyable, but also get the best out of them.”

User experience also ties heavily into the design of the program. If the design of the eLearning lessons is unhelpful or disorganized, it will hurt user experience. On the contrary, if the design of the lessons is organized, simple to understand, and easy to grasp, then user experience will vastly improve. The key here is to have simple navigation with your training on a format that appeals to both your incoming (Millennials) and established workforce (Gen Xers).

Furthermore, another important aspect of the user experience is integration and making it accessible on various platforms. For instance, when creating or improving your corporate training, consider making it available on mobile and tablet devices. This way, employees can set the pace for their training and have the option to continue training outside of the office environment. Thanks to the rise in Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) in the business environment, as 74% of organizations are either already using or planning to allow employees to bring their own devices, corporate training programs can use this to their advantage.

The goal of good user experience design is to engage the learner and to make it as easy as possible to learn what the eLearning program is attempting to teach them. There are numerous ways to improve the user experience, from making the User Interface (UI) more friendly and easy to understand, to breaking up long sections of text with images or lists. Or splitting hard to grasp or more complex concepts into multiple simpler lessons. If the learner is engaged, and it's easy for them to learn what they're supposed to, then training will take less time, and information will be retained better.

All and all, design and user experience are two of the most important parts of custom eLearning development: Proper user experience design can engage the learner and help them understand the subject material easily, and good lesson design will make it easier to understand, and give the learner the information they need to develop behaviors and complete objectives. Properly engaging the learners is extremely important; it can increase the speed at which they learn the subject material, and will help them retain more of the information presented to them. This engagement then opens to door to better career growth, work being produced, and overall company retention.

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