In a world dealing with Covid and quarantines, there has been many changes to how we have been going about life. One aspect of change is the increase of virtual training and education. I have homeschooled my for all of their schooling years and we as a family have utilised technology and virtual training for many years. But I am amazed to see the options that have become available with the Covid pandemic. The opportunities to upskill through exceptional virtual training and educational programs are becoming more and more available. Virtual training and education are advancing in great strides in excellence, quality and in variety.
Virtual Training in the Business Sector
One of the areas that are beginning to make use of Virtual Training is in the business sector.
Companies realise that allowing employees to learn while in the workplace is vital for a business to continue to grow, and technology such as virtual learning is key to this.
Technology has provided a number of enhancements for the learning environment, and now that we are connected around the world like never before, information is just a click away which means getting international exposure to places or countries that in normal situations would be difficult.
Well-designed virtual training offers many benefits. These include:
- Self-paced learning opportunities where students can work around their work schedules
- Greater chance for individualised contribution, feedback, and coaching
- The ability to reach an audience that is isolated or challenged with disabilities
- It’s more economical than face-to-face training, especially when scaled
- It’s a great equaliser…trainers don’t know who is a manager or a subordinate, so every learner is important
- Opportunities for dispersed learners to interact and network with one another
- More flexibility in program design
- Reduced travel costs
- Increased efficiency
- Employees spend less time away from the job
- Increase in diversity and inclusion
- Enablement of work/life balance due to less travel and time away from home
- Ability to offer continuous learning opportunities to increase knowledge retention
Virtual Training in the Education Sector
Higher education is another area that also has been affected by the Covid pandemic. The question is, will more students begin to lean towards virtual education after the Covid pandemic. Virtual Education/training costs will be considerably cheaper especially since the cost of a college education has skyrocketed and they are becoming more for the wealthy’s children than anyone coming from the middle class. I believe virtual training in higher education (e.g. colleges and universities) will become more available and accessible to people in the lower income bracket.
Another aspect of virtual training is that it offers people a variety in learning and different teaching methodologies. Not everyone learns the same. And virtual teaching can cater to the different learning styles.
Virtual training can be very personalised where one-on-one training is happening verses being lost in a classroom of students.
Virtual Training in the Future
What is exciting is that virtual training is becoming more than headsets and videos. Things like augmented reality can be a useful training tool for those working at home. For example, engineers and architects can look at a to-scale model of their work before it’s even made into a prototype thanks to augmented reality.
Augmented reality combines elements of the digital world with that of the real world. Cameras, phones and other computer devices can alter images of the real world, changing aspects of your immediate space to help with training methods. This may include adding a 3D model onto your desk. You could then use your phone as a filter to move around the object, inspecting aspects of your work closely, helping to identify issues which can be missed when using computers alone.
The future of virtual training is exciting and growing in leaps and bounds. I believe that because of Covid, the world has been forced to change the way we look at education and training, and that’s not a bad thing. The opportunities for advancement in Virtual Training are becoming more available to everyone who is wanting to advance in their field. And that means we all benefit.
Written by Debbie-lee Byrne (Brand Marketing Analyst at International Institute of Digital Marketing)