Employees can sometimes possess all the necessary skills and qualifications for their specific work requirements but this combination has less value if they lack one of most crucial element which is experience. Efficiency and expertise are greatly valued in any working environment and such qualities normally grow out of experience. Psychologists highlight that people require 10 years of sustained and focused practice to reach the highest level of competency in any field. However, expecting 10 years of experience, especially in the young labor force is unrealistic. One proven effective way which can contribute to accelerating the expertise and efficiency level of staffs is through training and development programs which have the ability to simulate and reflect the reality of their working situations.
Nowadays, with the advent of new technologies, such training programs are available on the market since the training industry has significantly evolved. Technological advancement has led to various innovative learning and development solutions, among which e-learning is gradually gaining increased traction within the corporate world. According to a study by Ambient Insight, the size of the e-learning market was estimated to be over USD 165 Billion in 2015 and is likely to grow by 5% between 2016 and 2023, exceeding USD 240 Billion. With solutions such as webinars, simulations, gamifications and scenario-based videos, the training and development programs have shifted to a whole new level. In other words, employees now have the opportunity to experience real work situations through e-learning programs consisting of scenario-based videos. The Cisco VNI Forecast and Methodology 2015-2020, has revealed that by 2020, videos will be responsible for 80% of internet traffic around the world. Therefore, investing in such training solutions can be highly beneficial, especially for millennials who will make up 75% of the global workforce by 2025.
For instance, with scenario-based video training, staffs feel involved while walking their way through the storyline, usually based around a complex work situation which requires to be solved. Scenario-based learning is based on the principles of situated learning theory (Lave & Wenger, 1991), which argues that learning best takes place in the context in which it is going to be used, and situated cognition; the idea that knowledge is best acquired and more fully understood when situated within its context (Kindley, 2002).
Below are some of the most important features of scenario-based e-learning:
The learner assumes the main role.
With scenario-based e-learning the learner is the leader, responding to a job realistic situation. The latter can take on-screen actions to respond to a work challenge. Compared to instructor-led learning where the instructor has the responsibility to make the learner feel involved in the training, scenario-based e-learning allows the learner to take the lead and be immersed in a realistic work situation presented in the video.
Enhance decision-making and critical thinking capabilities
Scenario-based e-learning usually works best when applied to tasks requiring decision-making and critical thinking in complex situations. It allows the learners to experience situations which they will eventually face in their working environment. Therefore, the training prepares them to effectively apply what they have learnt and make the best decisions based on best practices at the right moment.
High engagement and retention
Studies show that 40% of people respond to visual information better than to plain text and are 60,000 times faster to process visual data than text. Therefore, investing in video learning can prove to be highly beneficial to maximize the performance of learners. Effective video training tends to have a high rate of retention among learners due to the highly engaging content. The design of the videos plays a great role in capturing the full attention of learners. Basically, scenarios trigger our short and long term memory which stimulates superior retention.
One of the biggest advantages of scenario-based training is that the videos are highly relatable according to the role of the employees. Normally, when people can relate to a situation, they grasp the concept more efficiently. This leads to more engagement and encourage the learner to apply those skills and knowledge to his specific role.
Accelerate workplace expertise
Scenario-based e-learning is closely linked to job experience. Through scenarios, employees have the opportunity to experience work situations which they would come across in real life. Therefore, the scenario-based training represents a way in which employees gain work experience. One major benefit is that through a series of scenario-based video training, an employee can gain a good level of expertise for his role in a short amount of time.
With regards to the essential features mentioned above, scenario-based e-learning leads to an increase in efficiency and professionalism. This can contribute to create competitive advantage as well as a sustainable increase in return on investment to any organization. The high engagement and retention rate of scenario-based video training makes it easier for employees to grasp the essence of the lessons and apply their knowledge and skills professionally to their working role. Eventually, it results into more productivity and profitability.