Mixing Your In Person Training With Online Testing

Mixing Your In Person Training With Online Testing

There are lots of benefits to online training, even if your training is still in person

We absolutely love how technology has made it possible for people to work remotely, waste less paper, securely store files on the cloud, and complete training and testing online (among so many other things). With all of that being said, one of the things technology has not been able to replicate is the power and impact of person-to-person interaction. While we encourage you to move most (or all) of your training and testing online, there are circumstances where you are just going to prefer an in person, learning experience. Today we are going to discuss how to take a hybrid approach by mixing in person training with online testing. 

How do I know when in-person training and or testing/proctoring is necessary?

This is a good place to start. Nine times out of ten, hiring an expert to spend a day (or multiple days) to train your team in person will be more expensive than going fully online. It can get even more expensive if you incorporate in person testing and proctoring… so why even bother with the added expense in the first place? The answer to this question depends on multiple factors:

  • Organizational culture and individual (or team) personalities
  • Complexity and importance of topics

Thinking about the factors listed above and structuring your strategy around them will guide you to the best solution for your team and organization. First, let’s consider your culture and team. What is your culture like? If your team has a strong and positive rapport with each other, having in person training can be very beneficial, especially if there are a number of personalities that are engaging, asking questions, etc. Group participation and a great attitude can actually be contagious and help everyone stay focused on even the most boring topics as well as the complex and crucial ones. 

Second, let’s consider the topic being taught or discussed. Engaging face-to-face with each other and the trainer can be substantially better for information comprehension and retention. Spend a few minutes now thinking about your training priorities. Which topics do you think are better suited for in person learning? Can you divide training (in person vs. online) by the simplicity of the topic? In our opinion, the simple answer is yes you can.  And, if you plan accordingly, you can organize your training programs to incorporate the in person aspect when it is most needed while leveraging online portions for greater efficiency and flexibility. 

What about testing? If I do my training in-person, do I also have to do testing in-person?

The short answer is, “No”. The longer answer starts with “It depends.” When it comes to testing, look back to the four factors outlined above. There may be topics you identify that require more substantial oversite or are best suited for everyone to be tested at the same time and in the same place. Often, however, giving your team the flexibility to do testing at the time and place where they can be the most engaged will deliver better results. Be deliberate with your strategy, work together with the people responsible for training and certification programs (both internally and externally). The important thing to remember is that you can create a program that works best for your team and organization. In today’s world, the hybrid approach can be very powerful and something we recommend to get the most value out of the process and your team.