Transform your virtual training sessions with interactive, engaging classes to motivate your employees and elevate their skills.
As a trainer, the dream is to deliver powerful learning experiences that leave a lasting impression on your trainees and help them reach their full potential. Maybe you do that already with in-person sessions. But have you figured out how to make your virtual training stick?
Grappling with technology and finding ways to make virtual sessions interactive is enough to overwhelm anyone. So, we’ve used our experience hosting and facilitating hundreds of virtual events to bring you this complete guide to virtual training sessions.
Livestorm helps teams collaborate and deliver memorable live or on-demand video experiences.
Virtual training is a method of delivering educational content remotely. Using the internet, it supports trainees to learn new skills or brush up on old ones, all from the comfort of their desks, couches, or kitchen tables.
In the workplace, virtual training is commonly used to upskill employees. Customer success teams also use it to educate new customers as part of their onboarding process or customer success strategy. Whether you’re responsible for training employees or supporting customers to use your products, you can host virtual training using online meeting tools, like Livestorm or Zoom.
Virtual training can take many forms, but there are two main types: self-paced learning and virtual instructor-led training (VILT).
Virtual training can be as effective as in-person training when planned in alignment with the needs and limitations of your employees and your organization. Consider these pros and cons.
Create in-depth virtual onboarding and training
Improve customer and employee satisfaction with virtual meetings and live or on-demand webinars.
If you're new to virtual training, you might wonder how you're going to keep your trainees focused from a distance. Here are a few key challenges (and solutions) you could face:
Livestorm helps teams collaborate and deliver memorable live or on-demand video experiences.
Training employees is crucial for any company if you want high-performing, engaged staff. Similarly, customer success teams need to show new customers the incredible value their product can provide. Here's why virtual training is the future:
Every organization needs virtual training. Taking your remote employee onboarding and training sessions online helps trainees fit them into busy schedules and access training materials anytime. Here are some organizations that may benefit from virtual training:
You can maximize the potential of virtual training by ensuring technical readiness, creating interactive materials, and fostering an inclusive environment in your virtual classroom. Here's how:
You can mix synchronous and asynchronous activities or focus solely on one type of delivery. For example, if your content is more suited to VILT, you can incorporate synchronous video sessions like webinars or virtual classrooms. Otherwise, you could focus on curating a knowledge base of self-paced online courses and on-demand webinars for trainees to try in their own time.
Pro tip: Even if you choose to let trainees learn at their own pace, we recommend including some form of face-to-face learning, even if it’s just 1:1 check-ins or regular coaching sessions. This will motivate them and make them feel more supported as they learn.
E-learning platforms help learners to access content and communicate with their trainers and peers. Consider the following when choosing a platform for virtual training:
An LMS like Blackboard Learn supports a self-paced learning process through course creation, assessments, tracking, and reporting. But all effective training requires face-to-face interaction.
A video engagement platform like Livestorm checks all of the above while facilitating live video training sessions. It can also double as an online onboarding platform because it’s ideal for hosting everything from 1:1s and shadowing sessio
ns to larger webinars.
A knowledge base is like a virtual library for learners to access and reference bits of information. This can include presentations, handouts, videos, quizzes, and other resources. It can also keep your training materials organized and up to date on a central platform. Consider using a platform that allows easy sharing and collaboration, like a shared drive or an LMS.
Pro tip: With Livestorm, you can automatically record virtual training sessions and convert them into replayable webinars to keep in your knowledge base.
The learning objectives you set should be specific, achievable, and relevant to your organization's overall goals. To get started, ask yourself questions like:
It's good practice to share the objectives with learners before the training starts and to review them at the end of the training to assess the progress. You can also use Q&A or live poll functionality to ask learners what their personal objectives are for the session and provide targeted support.
You need to set a clear agenda, assign roles and responsibilities for the session, and pre-record any videos or demos you plan to use during the training. Start by identifying the topics you want to cover and how you will deliver them. Then, decide on the structure of the training. Will you divide it into modules, lessons, or something else?
Next, decide if you’ll use videos, presentations, quizzes, or a combination of things. Make your content visually appealing, interactive, and easy to follow using a tool like Visme (which integrates with Livestorm!). But don't stop there; make sure your content is up to date and keep adding relevant resources to meet the changing needs of your learners.
Virtual training is incomplete without assessments. Quizzes and polls can be used to check for understanding, gauge engagement, and provide immediate feedback. For example, you could use a quiz at the end of a module before moving on to the next topic. Or, you could use a poll during a live session to check your trainees’ understanding of the topic and tailor your content to suit them.
Now that you've prepared your training materials, the delivery format, and the e-learning platform, it's time to make your virtual class as engaging as a Netflix binge-watching marathon.
Without in-person cues of a traditional classroom, virtual training can get derailed. You need to establish some ground rules to keep everyone focused and on task.
Here are a few examples of rules you can set to keep things running smoothly:
Icebreakers help set the tone for an enjoyable and interactive session and encourage team-building. It helps break down barriers and get your team comfortable with each other, so don't be afraid to experiment with your ideas!
Here are some examples of fun icebreaker activities:
Polls and quizzes can be used as a pre-training assessment or a post-training evaluation to gauge the retention of information. With Livestorm’s built-in live chat, polls, and Q&A functionality, you can encourage participation and generate discussions among learners.
You can even upvote questions, so the most important ones are answered first. These interactive elements can add an element of fun and engagement to your virtual training sessions, making them memorable for your employees.
When employees can easily access live sessions and training materials, they're more likely to stay engaged. Create a centralized location like a shared drive or online platform, including clear instructions and troubleshooting resources to help employees navigate any technical difficulties they may encounter.
Pro tip: With Livestorm’s Handouts plugin, you can share downloadable PDFs, presentations, and images while your session is ongoing.
Breakout rooms help divide larger teams into smaller, more manageable groups to share their thoughts, ideas, and questions in a more comfortable setting. If you’re using Livestorm, you can create unlimited breakout rooms, automatically assign attendees and add up to 16 speakers in each room. Provide clear instructions for learners to join, navigate the rooms, and ensure that the moderators are prepared to facilitate effective discussions.
Whiteboards can help illustrate technical or complex information and simulate the experience of an in-person training session. Use the Miro whiteboard in your Livestrom meeting room to take notes, create mind maps and add annotations. You can also export the digital whiteboard and use it as a resource for employees to refer back to after the session.
Think-Pair-Share (TPS) is an active learning strategy that encourages students to think critically about a given topic or question. The process usually involves three steps:
This approach encourages collaborative learning, critical thinking, and problem-solving.
You can also gain valuable insights into the group’s understanding of the training material through engagement analytics. Livestorm tracks analytics like the number of attendees, messages/questions/polls, number of sessions, and average duration to measure effectiveness and tailor courses as needed.
Virtual training is an effective way to educate employees and customers, reduce employee and customer churn, and improve your remote onboarding process. But it requires careful planning to make your learning environment engaging, interactive, and beneficial to employees.
You must set clear expectations, provide regular check-ins, and use your video conferencing platform’s interactive functionalities like polls, breakout rooms, and Q&A sessions to encourage participation. To get started, consider choosing a platform like Livestorm, which focuses on boosting virtual engagement. Plus, with Livestorm, you can use our calendar integrations to create recurring meetings, send email invitations, and block time in your trainees’ calendars.
You can make a virtual training session by following these steps:
Online training and virtual training synonymously refer to asynchronous learning like self-paced self-paced e-learning courses, webinars, or video tutorials. And synchronous learning is conducted live through virtual platforms like Livestorm, Zoom, or Microsoft Teams.
The best virtual training platform has features like video conferencing, live chat, screen sharing, polls & quizzes, file sharing, whiteboard collaboration, and analytics. For example, Livestorm offers all these features and integrates with widely used tools, including Slack, HubSpot, Google Calendar, and Salesforce. Livestorm also provides a free plan, so you can try it out before committing to it.
The most common type of virtual training is virtual instructor-led training (VILT). It’s often delivered online, in real-time through a video conferencing platform such as Livestorm, Zoom, WebEx, or Microsoft Teams.