From Netflix to Amazon’s Alexa, we’ve become accustomed to innovative digital platforms that provide information and entertainment at our fingertips. Over the last five years alone, these technologies have completely overhauled the way we watch TV, get directions, and talk to one another. Surrounded by on-demand services, we’ve come to expect real-time communication and instantly receiving information—and frontline associates are no exception.
Across industries with hourly employees like retail, hospitality, food service, healthcare, and manufacturing, many learning management solutions neglect to address employees’ increasing expectations for on-demand education. Training programs are often back-office focused and stagnant to adjust to employees’ needs. Most employers rely on outdated training processes like hours-long info sessions in classrooms and binders full of paper instructions – requiring a great deal of overhead work for managers and leaves employees bored to tears. Gone are the days of the required training bulletin board notices.
As a result, it’s no surprise that turnover costs are so high. On average, replacing one employee costs an organization up to $4,000 and includes more than 65 hours of training, according to the Institute for Research on Labor and Employment. With 78% of retail managers struggling to meet their turnover goals, according to a WorkJam study, these onboarding costs add up fast in the service industry. As employees come and go, outdated training processes are causing employers to leave money on the table.
However, it’s possible for employers to address both turnover costs and employees’ on-demand expectations in one fell swoop: digital learning experience solutions.
Digital Workplace platforms like WorkJam allow employers to distribute training modules to new employees through desktop and mobile applications, empowering associates to take control of their training and reference information as needed. Here is why employers are getting on the learning experience solution bandwagon to keep up with on-demand expectations:
- Digital curriculum begins when employees set foot on-site. When onboarding new employees in regulation-heavy industries like healthcare, manufacturing, and food services, the process can be time-consuming and expensive. Because new employees can begin training on Digital Workplace apps as soon as they start working on-site, managers can deploy this dense information via the Digital Workplace and offer the opportunity for employees to complete modules without much oversight. This way, managers don’t waste valuable time leading hours-long training sessions with new hires, and can instead simply clarify information as needed when the employee comes on board.
- Employees expect mobility, and employers need to deliver. From communication tools to maps, smartphones provide a world of possibility. So, why shouldn’t training modules be mobile and do the same? By providing a Digital Workplace through apps on employee mobile devices, or onsite using kiosks and tablets, high-level executives and supervisors alike can efficiently distribute information to employees on an incredibly large scale with amazing speed. For example, if a restaurant has new menu items or daily specials, management can swiftly distribute this information through the app to hundreds of employees. This not only ensures that requirements are consistent across all locations, but also allows employees to reference these updates and modules on a recurring basis, without having to repeatedly ask a supervisor for clarification.
- On-demand training provides opportunities for growth and cross-location flexibility. As employees move up in their careers at different rates, it can be difficult to keep up with their fluctuating needs for new training. With on-demand digital curriculum, ambitious employees don’t need to wait for their supervisor to distribute new modules or information; instead, they can simply elect to take on additional skills or roles across the organization, opening the door to upward growth if desired. Additionally, this technology can allow employees to transition more smoothly between different locations. When employees are able to pick up additional shifts at neighboring locations or continue working with their organization in new cities after moving, employers cut turnover and therefore reduce labor costs.
Overall, knowledge empowers employees. Organizations need to leverage employees’ desire for on-demand information by providing communication and training in the palms of their hands through Digital Workplace platforms like WorkJam. In turn, employees new and old will feel more comfortable and confident in their roles, which will raise the bar for customer engagement.
Will Eadie is the VP of Sales and Strategy at WorkJam and is responsible for developing strategic, high-performing sales and cultivating customer relationships. As a dynamic sales professional with experience driving strong solutions for the customers by working hand-in-hand with the product, Will excels at developing customer relationships and brings to WorkJam fifteen years of deep domain expertise in Strategic Workforce Management, Human Capital Management, and Employee Engagement. Prior to joining WorkJam, Will held roles at Kronos for ten years, serving as Director of National Accounts and Director of Retail and Hospitality Sales in the U.S.