Most corporations, especially medium to larger businesses with numerous physical locations, have frequent turnover throughout the company. While turnover is normal, it also leads to increased training costs and frequent frustrations with new employees not properly following the company’s standards, practices, and values. Training new employees is both expensive and time consuming, but training videos can help companies gain an edge in company-wide education and training at a fraction of the cost of in-person physical training. Sending key employees to numerous facilities repeatedly becomes expensive and unrealistic, especially given the greater responsibilities and higher-value tasks that key employees often have to undertake. Having a series of training videos for employees to view allows top employees to pursue their everyday activities while also educating new hires in the company’s proper standards and procedures without leaving the corporate headquarters.In days past, training video production could be both expensive and just as time-consuming as in-person training, but with proper coordination and selecting the right company for the job, training videos can be affordable and effective. Companies have a variety of tools at their disposal with training video production, not just live-action videos and staged scenes, but animation-driven pieces, screen capture videos, and simple demonstrations by key employees that need not cost tens of thousands of dollars to develop. Even better, as standards and practices change and evolve, training videos can continue to be updated without being completely recreated for a fraction of the cost and frustration of sending key employees on company-wide road trips.
While nobody would deny that in-person training from a top professional is a fantastic method to train new employees, it can also become prohibitively expensive and unrealistic when a company has dozens of locations and frequent turnover. Such a method for employee training is simply not realistic for most companies, which means new employees are handed a lengthy manual that they may or may not read. Even when employees read a manual from start to finish, can it really compare to watching a task performed on video? The old saying goes, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” which may not strictly be true, but showing an employee how a task is performed versus describing it unquestionably leads to better results and retention compared to a manual alone. Additionally, the video is always available for reference and reminders.
Many companies have turned to eLearning alternatives, or online training programs, rather than traditional in-person training and seminars. A hybrid approach incorporating online training courses and training videos provides a way to deliver the same information, but without the complete loss of the human connection that an online training course alone provides. A report by Kaltura, a software company that surveyed more than 300 people in diverse businesses, found that 52% cited “reduced overall costs” as a key benefit of training videos, while 57% found “better learning results” as an important benefit.Cisco released a specific case study for video training and video meeting solutions that it accomplished for the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) and its 5,000 employees spread across the state. ALDOT estimated the cost savings overall would help pay for the video solutions within 3-4 years and reduce future expenses significantly. In addition to video conferencing solutions, Cisco also integrated a number of video tutorial tools including allowing retiring employees to create tutorial videos for new hires to help smooth the transition process and save on training costs. Without the need for employees to drive sometimes more than a hundred miles for a simple meeting or training session, the cost-savings on transportation expenses are immense when considering the massive employee base.
Microsoft implemented a company-wide eLearning video training network and calculated their cost savings at $13.9 million per year. Oracle reported saving $10 million per year through eLearning while Dow Chemical reduced their training costs from $95 to $11 per employee. While video is not the only component to eLearning initiatives, it is unquestionably a valuable tool as part of the group of technological innovations available to companies to cut training costs and standardize operations across distances and departments. While larger companies have greater financial means to launch large, complicated eLearning portals, smaller companies can still take advantage of the cost-savings associated with training videos as well as their other numerous benefits.
While training video production may not work for all companies and is not the ideal solution for extremely small businesses, it can be a highly effective means of standardizing operations and saving costs for many companies that grow weary of sending their top employees to train all new hires in disparate locations. Training videos combined with quizzes for employees after viewing them can help increase the quality of service provided to customers and greatly reduce corporate costs in travel, employee time, and valuable resources that could be expended in greater pursuits. While the upfront costs will not be small, they need not be excessive. The long-term savings can greatly benefit not only a company’s bottom line but also the overall sense of cohesion, service, and standardization that is essential for the success of companies with both a strong reputation and numerous locations.