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What You Must Know About Implementing Technical Training in Employee Onboarding

Do you know how easy it is for new employees to onboard in your company? How long has it been since youv’e onboarded at a company? For me, that answer would be a very long time. So long that I don’t remember anymore.

If you’re tired of seeing new employees struggle to adapt to your company’s technology then this post will help give you some ideas. If employees aren’t onboarded properly then you’re going to have some unhappy employees.

And what’s an essential part of onboarding employees? Onboarding them with good corporate technical training that introduces them to your company’s technology and how to use it to be successful.

We’ll delve into the world of employee onboarding and explore the best practices for implementing technical training into the onboarding process. When it comes to onboarding new employees, companies often focus on introducing them to the company culture, policies, and procedures. However, one crucial aspect often overlooked is providing adequate training on the technology and tools they will be using in their roles.

Without the necessary technical skills, employees will likely feel lost and frustrated, resulting in decreased productivity and engagement. Unless they’re a tech wizard then there’s a good chance they’re going to need some help.

Technical training is part of a well-rounded onboarding diet for new hires.

That’s why implementing technical training in employee onboarding is essential. By equipping new hires with the knowledge and skills they need to navigate your company’s technology, you can ensure a smooth transition and set them up for success from day one.

But how exactly should you go about incorporating technical training into your onboarding process? That’s why we’re here to help you. This post explores various strategies and techniques to help you seamlessly integrate technical training into employee onboarding programs.

From identifying the key areas of training to creating engaging and interactive learning experiences, we’ll cover the essential parts to get you started.

Get ready to revolutionize your onboarding process and empower your employees with the technical skills they need to thrive in the digital age. It’s helpful to understand the importance of technical training in employee onboarding.

The Importance of Technical Training in Employee Onboarding

Without the necessary technical skills, there’s a good chance employees will feel lost and frustrated, resulting in decreased productivity and engagement. Starting a new job feels like drinking from a firehose.

Kid pulling spray head handle and spraying himself in the face.

For most employees (yes, even younger generations are mostly not tech gurus) a big chunk of the overwhelm comes from company technology. That’s why implementing technical training in employee onboarding is essential.

By equipping new hires with the knowledge and skills they need to navigate your company’s technology, you can ensure a smooth transition and set them up for success from day one. If employees don’t feel well-trained then turnover will likely be high.

So, one of the most important aspects of technical training in employee onboarding is to keep employee turnover low. Yes, corporate technical training will reduce employee turnover, guaranteed.

Without good technical training new hires will feel like they’re drinking from a firehose.

During the onboarding process, it’s important to provide sufficient technical training from a high-level overview to more detailed training for essential tasks. Acquiring technical skills will not only benefit the individual employee but also contribute to the overall success of the organization.

By investing in their development right from the start, you’re showing your commitment to employee growth and creating a positive work environment.

Identifying the Key Areas of Technical Training

The first step in implementing technical training into your employee onboarding program is identifying the key areas that employees will need to be successful in their roles. This will vary depending on your industry and specific job roles within your organization.

A personalized playlist for each major role is helpful so training is custom and they’ll get to know the technology for their specific role.

Start by analyzing each role’s technological requirements. You should ask these important questions.

  • What programs do all employees need to use?
  • What software programs or tools do they need to use?
  • Are there any specific technical skills they should possess?

By conducting a thorough analysis of these requirements and more, you can identify the core areas that need to be covered during training.

Additionally, consider any upcoming technological changes that may impact your employees’ roles. There should be no surprises which means the onboarding process should always be up-to-date.

Assessing the Current Skill Levels of New Hires

Don’t simply make all training required for all new hires. Unless training is absolutely required then make it optional. While you may not be able to tell the current skill level of every new hire, they will.

Rather than forcing yourself to determine their level, empower them to choose their skill level and what they need. Give employees time and the resources to get up to speed on the necessary tools but ultimately empower them to choose.

Knowing where new hires start will help you create a good path for their technical training.

This will help them tailor the training to their specific needs and avoid wasting time on topics they are already proficient in. Make them aware of what they will need to know once ramped up in their role but allow them to choose their path.

This builds trust as well as empowers them to build their skills for their role.

While there’s likely specific training for systems that employees won’t be familiar with, for some tools they will be familiar. Only make training required for systems that they must know and is very specific to your organization.

Designing a Comprehensive Technical Training Curriculum

Once you identified the key areas of technical training and assessed the skill levels of your new hires, it’s time to design the most helpful training that covers the right topics in the right amounts.

Don’t be fooled by the word comprehensive. Nothing is comprehensive nor should it be. It should be only the exact amount required in as little time and content as necessary to get the job done.

If you try to go the comprehensive route then you’re liable to overwhelm employees and lead them into the horrible realm of train brain. Make sure each topic is sufficiently broken down into manageable chunks. That could be courses, modules, lessons, or even job aids and help articles.

Don’t be afraid to leverage performance support. It’s an extremely powerful option for training that’s often forgotten.

Training content should have only what employees will need soon after they take the training but here’s a trick: Make sure there are plentiful resources available for employees to help themselves (don’t let them learn helplessness) but make sure all the training points them towards the resources where they can help themselves.

New hires are extra vulnerable to being overwhelmed with training that’s too long and has too much content.

New hires should have available onboarding communities on the enterprise social network. It’s a great place for providing technical training support. It also means any questions and answers are available to all other new hires.

That’s a valuable resource!

Be sure that the corporate technical training has real practice too, not just theoretical or boringly process-driven training (click here, then here, now here). That can become a snooze fest real quick.

One of our favorite types of technology training is realistic software simulations which are a powerful way to give hands-on real experience to employees in a safe environment. Scenarios-based technical training helps employees truly connect with the training with skills they’re likely to run into in their work. These are valuable resources for connecting the dots between technical and soft skills.

These real-life examples and case studies make your onboarding more relatable and practical. This “hands-on” approach will reinforce their learning and boost their confidence in using the technology effectively.

Focus On What’s Needed At Each Level to Scaffold Training

To ensure a smooth learning experience for new hires, it’s important to scaffold training bit by bit. That means starting slow without overwhelming employees and building a solid structure for them to build knowledge upon.

It’s nice for them to know what software tools your organization has and what each tool does as a basis of knowledge. With that, you can then piece together the vital information about how they connect and how each one works (and sometimes work together).

Start with foundational concepts and gradually progress towards more advanced topics as necessary. Just remember, no single course or resource is ever meant to make someone a pro.

Scaffolding training ensures employees get only what they need when they need it.

Masterly comes with time and that’s likely not necessary for a while. Just give them what they need to succeed at day 30, 60, 90, etc. Providing resources and support materials at each level helps employees build upon their existing knowledge and skills while not feeling overwhelmed.

For example, if you have employees with varying levels of proficiency in a particular software program, offer different training modules or tracks based on their skill levels. This way, each employee can progress at their own pace and focus on what they need to learn for their job.

Focus on performance and make sure each resource is only what employees need to know in the short term. Don’t tell them what they might need to know in a month, that won’t help anyone.

Providing Ongoing Support and Resources for Continued Learning

I mentioned this throughout this post but it’s important enough to warrant its own section. Always make sure new hires have ongoing support and resources available.

If you don’t want employees to learn helplessness then give them the resources to help themselves. That means there should be one source of truth where they can search for knowledge. Don’t separate information among your intranet, knowledge base, and service desk support pages.

Keep all the resources together and make them easy to search. Otherwise, employees won’t know which way to look and they’re just going to call the help desk. The training resource’s job is to reduce calls to the help desk not increase them.

Providing ongoing support for new hires is as important as the onboarding process itself.

Here are some ways (some I mentioned already) you can make sure new hires have the resources they need.

  • A dedicated Q&A community for new hires on your enterprise social network (ESN).
  • One source of knowledge that searches all resources.
  • A dedicated support contact who knows they’re dealing with new hires.
  • When possible point them towards where they can find the answer rather than giving the answer.

Technical training shouldn’t stop once the onboarding process is complete. To ensure continuous growth and development, it’s essential to provide ongoing support and resources for employees to expand their technical skills even after onboarding.

Create a culture of learning within your organization by encouraging employees to find answers themselves. We worked on a project to create many short videos that helped employees solve issues that the help desk received calls for the most.

If new hires have nowhere they feel comfortable asking questions then they’re going to feel uncomfortable at their job.

That way when the help desk received tickets and calls for an issue they could point them towards resources for employees to help themselves. That saves time for providing support and enables employees to help themselves.

Just be sure training videos aren’t your answer to everything, videos aren’t always the best solution for technical training.

Wrap Up

Implementing technical training in employee onboarding is crucial for setting your new hires up for success. By identifying the key areas of training, assessing skill levels, and designing a comprehensive curriculum, you can ensure that your employees have the necessary technical skills to excel in their roles.

Don’t assume younger employees are being hired with all the technical skills, though. They’re not. Surveys show it’s one of the most desired types of training. Not every employee is comfortable with technology, either, so be sure you’re supporting them too.

Remember to scaffold the training based on individual skill levels and provide ongoing support and resources for continued learning. By empowering your employees with the skills they need, you’re not only investing in their professional growth but also contributing to the overall success of your organization.

That means you’re going to increase the chance they’ll stick around for a longer time and be valuable employees who will thrive.

So, take the necessary steps to integrate technical training into your employee onboarding program and watch as your team members thrive in the digital age. Schedule a free consultation to discuss how we can help make your new employee onboarding programs thrive with top-notch corporate technical training.

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