It would be difficult not to agree that corporate results are negatively impacted when employees lack knowledge about the organisation’s products, services, policies, and so on.
When things go wrong, it can be all too easy for an employee to plead ignorance, saying, “I was never told to do it that way.” It is imperative that organisations identify knowledge gaps, particularly in critical areas such as health and safety.
Identifying gaps at an individual employee level can seem like a daunting exercise, particularly as their employees may be geographically remote and work in varying roles with different objectives.
However, we are here to tell you that it is achievable, and we have 7 strategies to get you started in reducing employee knowledge gaps.
Strategy #1: Discover Knowledge Gaps
First of all you need to determine what your employees should know, but don’t know, using a range of pre and post training assessment techniques. Frequent testing and self-assessment can be implemented in a fun and easy way to ascertain learning which has and has not retained.
Doing this frequently will give you a chance to find the gap before it has a negative impact on employee performance.
Strategy #2: Discover Application Gaps
An organisation is best advised to measure the effectiveness of training on the existence of knowledge gaps by evaluating training at Kirkpatrick’s level 3 and level 4. These levels identify the learning employees are applying in their roles and the quantifiable benefit to the organisation.
It is challenging to measure, but it is achievable through ongoing testing, and assessment against KPIs by the employee and their manager.
Strategy #3: Make it Relevant
The days of ‘one size fits all’ training programs are gone as organisations have recognised that employees are individuals who best learn in different ways. Each employee has a different learning style and level of expertise, therefore their knowledge gaps will be unique.
Corporate training programs no longer expect all employees to learn optimally in the same way. Each employee will have a unique level of expertise, learning style, and knowledge gaps. Reduce these gaps through personalisation.
Strategy #4: Make it Bite-Sized
Cognitive theory suggests that people can retain only about 4 items in short term memory. This means long training sessions filled with a multitude of concepts will probably be a non-efficient way to train employees.
It is far more effective to present training in bite sized chunks that focus on what knowledge gaps the individual employee has.
Strategy #5: Make it Fun and Interesting
If you expect learning to be absorbed and retained, make the process of learning fun and interesting. That will make the process more memorable and engaging.
Strategy #6: Make it Worthwhile
Most employees will be motivated to engage in learning that is useful for them, and closes gaps in their knowledge. Therefore ensure employees understand how the training will benefit them specifically.
In the article “The Ten Ironies of Motivation”, written by Bob Nelson, a reputed commentator on employee motivation, he identifies that a key strategy in maintaining motivation is intermittent reinforcement.
Strategy #7: Make it Continuous
Most importantly the key to identifying and closing knowledge gaps is learning and evaluation undertaken on a continuous basis. Interval reinforcement can be used to counter the issue of learning being lost as soon as the training event has concluded.
Ready to Learn More?
To find out how Axonify can cut your training budgets in half, increase knowledge retention and have a direct impact on your company’s bottom line, lets continue the conversation and make an appointment with a solutions expert.