There are many benefits of implementing an online volunteer training program. Here are 5 reasons e-learning is worth the investment.
The importance of effective volunteer training cannot be overstated. Training is often one of the first interactions that volunteers have with an organization during their volunteer journey, setting the bar and providing a good experience is crucial. Over the last few years, online volunteer training (e-learning) has grown in popularity, and for good reason. According to an article, published by PapersOwl, e-learning courses can be completed almost 60% faster than in-person training.
Online training has also been shown to increase productivity. In fact, The American Heart Association claims that e-learning can increase productivity by up to 25%. Online volunteer training offers benefits for both volunteer constituents and volunteer coordinators, and the ease of creating in-depth virtual training programs has improved with the development of Learning Management Systems (LMS).
Here are 5 in-depth reasons why nonprofits should consider investing in a learning management system to train volunteers effectively.
While it is true that creating online volunteer training takes time and an investment, the flexibility it provides volunteers can greatly increase engagement. Online training can be completed from anywhere with an internet connection, and set-up as “self-paced” to work into a volunteers schedule. Investing in e-learning can also greatly reduce that amount of administrative time that it takes to conduct in-person training.
Online training is consistent. In other words, each participant in a training program is receiving the same experience. Consistent training programs can greatly enhance productivity, engagement, and understanding.
Here is a study, conducted by The Training Associates, that reinforces the importance of consistency in the learning experience.
Reduced Costs (Long-term)
The cost of in-person training can add up quickly, especially if an organization utilizes thousands of volunteers per year. Many nonprofits spend money on training fees, venue rental, catering, printed educational material, and more to train volunteers. Volunteers can also incur costs when completing in-person training, such as transportation fees. Many of these costs can be cut when transitioning to an online training program, making it appealing for all parties involved.
Tracking & Reporting
With in-person training, tracking participation and knowledge is challenging. The opposite is true with on-line volunteer training programs. Many learning management systems provide advanced analytics, tracking, and comprehension testing features. These features quickly become invaluable for testing and optimization.
Some learning management systems integrate with volunteer management software to offer even greater functionality. For example, Xcelerate Media, a leading LMS provider, has partnered with VolunteerHub to create an API to easily exchange information between the two systems. This type of integration can bridge the gap between training, registration, and volunteer recruitment.
Check out how The Dublin Irish Festival is using the integration between VolunteerHub and Xcelerate Media here.
Training volunteers to perform their duties is one of the most important steps of a volunteer program. Investing in online volunteer training can help an organization increase flexibility, be consistent, reduce costs, enhance tracking and reporting, and integrate training with other systems, such as volunteer management software.