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Training software (aka eLearning or computer-based training (CBT) software) helps corporate entities and educational institutes administer and manage their learning and training programmes. These systems help users design courses for their audience, assign training programmes, and track learner progress. A training system is often customised to meet the needs of specific organisations and offer tools including course registration and testing, certification tracking, conferencing, skills tracking, and reporting.
The benefits of training software
- Improve employee engagement: Engaged employees contribute more to an organisation and stay longer than disengaged workers. Training existing employees is often more cost-effective when compared to the expense of hiring and training new employees. Training platforms can help top performers gain additional skills, continue their professional development, and contribute to business growth, all of which boost employee engagement.
- Added training flexibility: Training software provides flexibility by allowing a mix of classroom/in-office and online training. Employees also have the freedom to proceed at their own pace while managing daily workloads.
- Reduced administrative expenses: Training software can offer streamlined course structures, automated email reminders, performance dashboards, and certificate management, all of which reduce overhead costs and the manual effort required of a learning and development team.
Typical features of training software
- Instructor-led training (ILT) administration: Administer classroom activities, such as course scheduling, resource organisation, course registration, and training distribution.
- Course management: Create and edit training courses, assign courses to learners, and keep track of their performance.
- Learning paths/tracks: Establish groups of courses and designate materials to be completed in a specified, sequential order.
- Blended learning: Offer learning paths that combine in-person training with online sessions.
- Mobile learning: Learners can access learning materials on mobile platforms.
Considerations when purchasing training software
- Customer support: Training software often requires customisation for unique business needs. To ensure you have the right resources for your employees, it's critical that whichever training system vendor you choose is responsive to your needs. Evaluate all aspects of training system vendors' customer support before making a purchase and test out the offered support channels if possible (e.g. phone, email support, and live chat).
- Total cost of ownership: No two training software solutions are the same, which makes the direct comparison a bit tough for small business managers. Before making a purchase decision, buyers should calculate the total cost of ownership, including factors such as deployment, customer support, data storage, training, and implementation, to ensure they stay within their budget.
Relevant training software trends
- Virtual reality-powered training: Training systems will ultimately be revamped with increasing adoption of virtual reality (VR). According to Capterra research, immersive experiences that place learners in role-playing situations to provide hands-on learning will surpass current offered technologies (e.g. videos, situational case studies). Expect the cost of VR development tools to come down as mainstream adoption continues.
- Gamification: Game-based training systems will continue to change the face of training solutions by including gaming tools such as points, levels, achievement boards, and badges. Companies such as Duolingo and McDonald's have successfully integrated gamification into training modules.
- Microlearning: Breaking training into bite-sized pieces to reduce learner time investment and reduce schedule disruption is gaining popularity as an educational approach, rather than supplementing traditional lessons. According to Capterra research, microlearning offers benefits such as reduced training costs and increased engagement.