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As the pace of the business world changes, it is important for companies to keep up with relevant advances. By providing training for employees, value is added to the business. The expense involved in traditional classroom-style training can be prohibitive; logistics are often a problem as well. Employers might consider online training as a way to effectively and conveniently provide training opportunities that might otherwise not be feasible. Online IT training is easily accomplished using various streaming services and Web conferencing facilities. The following guide will help employers and managers determine if online training is the right solution for their needs.
The cost of online IT training is relatively small in comparison to the same training in a live setting. By training online, you are avoiding potential costs such as video or audio equipment, hotel and travel expenses as well as refreshment and meal allowances. Online IT training allows employees to attend from anywhere. Special offers are also available with online IT training packages such as that offered by TrainingCenter.Com. In association with MindLenders, TrainingCenter.com offers a 100 percent money back guarantee if you are not satisfied with the service.
When a business offers live training it has to rely on all employees being able to make the training date, at the agreed time and place. Some people may not be able to travel or may be unable to attend for other reasons. Online IT training allows people to attend from anywhere in the world, and sessions can be archived enabling a person to do the training at a time that suits them.
The needs of a business will always come first and if arrangements have been made for live training at a physical venue, cancelling this due to other commitments will cost money. You will have to pay for the venue whether all or none of the employees show up. Online training is available whenever you need it and if you arrange a web conference staff can no longer attend, you simply reschedule. There is no cost involved beyond a small amount of lost office time.
Latest Technology and Training
While a live trainer will be an expert in their field, they are unlikely to have the same up-to-the-minute knowledge base an online IT training package has to offer. Your employees will benefit from the very latest in technology, meaning they will always receive the very best IT training has to offer.
While there are many benefits to online IT training, there are also issues to think about when implementing an online training program.
Difficulty Gauging Trainee Understanding
When training occurs in a classroom, the instructor can easily determine if a trainee is paying attention. Facial expressions and body language can even tell the instructor if a student is having difficulty understanding the lesson. It is much more difficult to see if the students are paying attention and understand the lesson when instructing an online class, as the instructor usually cannot see the trainees. A system to identify those needing help is a necessity.
Lack of Individual Instruction
In a classroom setting, instructors often float around the room during activities and provide individual instruction where necessary. This is much more difficult to accomplish in a virtual training environment. Students often do not speak up when individual instruction is needed, so the instructor does not know to provide it.
Unexpected Technical Difficulties
Even if online IT training systems are tested in advance, technical difficulties are tough to avoid. Unexpected glitches, incompatibility of trainee systems, and network outages can interrupt training sessions or even prevent them from occurring. It is a good idea to have a backup plan in case of technical difficulties during online training.
Technical Inexperience of Trainees
Online training is often a new concept to trainees. They often experience a learning curve when it comes to using online training systems and getting used to the system itself. This learning curve can sometimes get in the way of learning. If a trainee is attempting to figure out the online training system while the instructor is teaching a concept, the trainee could miss a valuable part of the training curriculum. Consider holding training sessions that focus on using the online training tools for those new to online training.
Sending employees through online IT training courses is often a cost-effective way to build skills quickly. For $50 to $100 per course, IT professionals can review topics such as networking, database administration, programming, and software use at any location with an Internet connection. They can also use individual courses to prepare for certification exams.
Professionals who would like in-depth knowledge about a subject typically choose an online certification program. Examples include Cisco’s Certified Network Associate (CCNA), CompTIA’s A+ certificate, and Microsoft’s Certified Professional Developer (MCPD) credential. Prices range from $100 to $150 per course for single users, and from $350 to $600 per course for non-concurrent multiple users.
According to Campus Technology, getting a bachelor’s degree in information technology online can cost between $21,000 and $86,000. The average price is $46,800, which covers four years of tuition in any number of IT fields.
The most important advantages to online IT training are cost-effectiveness and convenience. Enabling employees to train online eliminates the need for a physical meeting place, travel expenses, and scheduling. Employees also have the advantage of obtaining the most up-to-date information from the training program, rather than relying on the possibly flawed or incomplete knowledge of a live instructor.
Difficulties may arise in gauging the effectiveness of the training—feedback is not always possible, and employees may have difficulty comprehending certain aspects, as there is no way to monitor the attention and understanding that a classroom instructor would be able to do. Employees may also find it difficult to use the system’s tools effectively, depending on their skill levels, and could miss important information from the course itself.
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Keeping on top of staff training is important for any business, and it is one way to add value to your company. Not only will consistent training keep your staff happy, but your customers or clients will receive the best service possible. Online IT training has many benefits over more traditional classroom-style training, so before you determine your training plan, consider how you are going to achieve it.
Online IT training is not cheap, but when you consider that you do not have to pay for travel expenses, hotels or the cost of hiring a conference room (as you would for live training) it can be the most cost-effective option. TrainingCenter.com specializes in many different Internet courses, and it also offers IT training packages.
Online training gives your staff more flexibility and increases the number of people who will actually be trained. A live course has to be attended on a certain date and at a specific time, but with online training, your staff members can complete the course at the times that are best for them.
For more valuable information on the potential benefits of online IT training, as well as the potential disadvantages for your company, visit Business.com.