According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, millennials will account for 75% of the workplace by 2025. It’s not only advised, but essential that training programs are designed with this statistic in mind as more millennials continue to populate organizations across the globe.
Considering the formats and methods this generation values, the flexible nature of virtual training provides an ideal environment for learners to thrive. Based on what we know about their behavior and learning style, here are the best ways to engage millennials via virtual training.
Integrate Cutting Edge Technology and Visual Content
This is a generation that grew up on technology and is accustomed to learning and solving problems through computer applications. In order to engage them you need to utilize the most cutting edge platforms, not only to create an environment that caters to their sound use of technology, but one that is naturally innovative by design. Adding as much visual stimuli as possible is also advised, since millennials are hard wired for consuming video, effective infographics and gamification. Be sure to design content that is accessible across multiple devices, particularly mobile.
Keep it Short
One of the most effective ways to convey information to any generation, but particularly millennials is by keeping content short and easy to digest through microlearning. There should never be more than one learning objective per microlearning asset and content should ideally run under five minutes. What one thing will they learn after consuming the information? In order to ensure the knowledge is transferred effectively in the shortest time frame possible, focus on just one concept.
Having grown up with technology, millennials are used to having 24/7 access to communication at their fingertips. They thrive on interaction, which translates to their behavior in the workplace. Incorporating training that requires group discussion, social media and collaboration will not only increase their participation and engagement, but also their success and retention rates.
Since millennials are still entering the workplace and many may not yet be in leadership or management positions, it’s best to be clear about the expectations for the training. How are learners expected to participate? What skills will they be acquiring? They will want to know the criteria you will use and how performance or knowledge will be measured. Particularly when using virtual training platforms, it’s essential to minimize miscommunications due to any potential generational gaps that were previously avoided in classroom settings.
Provide Ongoing Training
This generation highly values continuing education, and feel compelled to develop their skills through ongoing learning. In order to engage these employees and increase talent retention rates, and improve productivity, organizations should be offering ongoing training and virtual platforms are the most efficient way to do so.
With an ever increasing millennial-based workforce, it’s incredibly important to optimize training strategies to fit the needs of this generation, and one of the best ways to do so is engage them via virtual programs.