The dates have been arranged. The instructor is also ready with their training kit. The only thing missing is the students. Only a quarter of your remote team has shown up for the mandatory virtual class on Time Management. To make matters worse, this is not the first time this has happened.
You have emailed your team about the class so many times you are sure their inbox is about to burst with notifications all reminding them to attend. The concerned managers have also been CC’d to contact the members. All efforts seem to be in vain.
Employee absenteeism, especially when it comes to training is not a new problem. The situation may get dicier if your team is virtual.
Issues of accountability always rear their ugly head if you are working with remote staff. In absence of face-to-face interaction, keeping an eye on their activities might get a bit challenging.
Before seeking information on how to reduce employee absenteeism in training, it might pay to ponder into possible reasons why some employees keep on giving virtual training sessions a miss.
They find the training boring
Sometimes the obvious answer is the correct one. Employee training tends to be compulsory. Employees might show up just to avoid getting disciplinary notices, but if they find the class boring, they will sit through it without gaining any knowledge. Some factors like text-heavy content, lengthy lectures with no interactive sessions like discussions, Q&A, or opportunities for applying knowledge in real-time may lead to disengaged employees.
They think the training is a form of punishment
The main objective of training is to help employees improve their performance. Some of your more astute workers might see it as an opportunity to improve their productivity and career prospects but a good many will regard it not as an opportunity to grow but as a disciplinary action of a sort.
Your company lacks a learning culture
If employee training sessions are only a recent phenomenon at your company, not all workers will be on board with it. Many will show up just because it is expected of them, some will see it as an unnecessary burden on their time and try to slack off.
It is interfering with Work-Life Balance
If employees perceive that training sessions are wreaking havoc with their work schedule or eating into their downtime, then some of them will start to find excuses to avoid it altogether.
How to Increase the Attendance Rate?
Allow flex training schedules
If traditional training sessions (based on a specific date and time) are not working out, you can consider flexible or self-paced training. You can provide your workers with some microlearning resources that they can utilize when needed. Or you can set a time frame and ask them to complete a course. They can proceed at their own pace as long as they complete it within the stipulated time.
Invest in an LMS
An LMS (Learning Management System) will help you monitor how much progress the employees have made in their course.
Make Training Fun & More Interactive
If training is made more interactive through videos and gamification, live Q &A, etc, it will make employees more engaged with the learning process.
Reward Successful Completion of Trainings
Employees will be more likely to stay on track with the training if their efforts are recognized. Announce special prizes for those who complete training on time. Successful completion of training should be regarded as a professional milestone that will be regarded as a criterion for getting a promotion or annual raise.