Robert Half International Embarks on Enriching Its Training With the Right Mix For Its Employees
Blended learning can yield big dividends, as Robert Half International Inc. has recently learned. “Our initial needs were to ramp up from a culture of instructor-led training (ILT) to e-learning,” says Joan Leighty, e-learning program manager. “But our e-learning program has exploded since then.What we offer now is a fairly robust blended training program. We still have ILT, but it’s augmented with online courses, reference books, and video clips. It’s media-rich.”
Employees at Robert Half create their own personal development plans that incorporate recommendations from supervisors.
“It’s recommended learning, not mandated,” says Leighty, “to enhance the skills they have, or to help them move forward in their career path.
“More and more, we’ll be integrating e-learning into our ILT. We won’t rely completely on facilitated sessions; pre- and post-work will be e-learning.”
This new style is going over big with employees.
“They see what they need to meet the criteria for advancement and then can train on their own with that in mind,” Leighty says. “There was a transition period some years ago when the culture was changing to e-learning, but because we have such a wealth of assets for them that meets their needs, employees are gravitating toward the e-learning with more enthusiasm. You can start and stop whenever you want; you’re not trapped in a class. That’s a huge improvement that gives them flexibility to continue training.”
The company chose SkillSoft as a key partner.
“SkillSoft’s Books 24×7 have been extremely popular,” says Leighty. “It augments the courses beautifully as a performance tool that employees can have open on their desk and save their notes to it. It’s not only a performance-enhancement tool, but it’s used for research as well.”
Informal learning will be incorporated into Robert Half ’s e-learning initiative—slowly.
“Our field offices utilize LinkedIn, and our external Websites use Twitter and LinkedIn,” Leighty says. “We’re working now on evaluating other kinds of Web 2.0 methods that might work best for us.
“But overall, we’re relying more and more on e-learning to make our program richer, better and more specialized, targeting individual needs. It’s the direction we’ll need to continue to develop to reach our people more easily, more often, and more efficiently.”
To find out more about correctly launching your own e-learning program, check out the article Rolling Out a New LMS