Podcasts have exploded in popularity and risen to become a mainstream form of media which is familiar to just about everyone. You can find podcasts dedicated to any topic—from cooking to cryptocurrencies to project management. It should come as no surprise for me to tell you that podcasts are also a good tool for employee training.
One of the best things about podcasts is that they’re inexpensive and everyone can create his or her own podcast easily. Podcasts are somewhat similar to radio shows—however, they are much better in terms of accessibility and availability. People can listen to podcasts via mp3 players or iPods, they can stream them on their smartphones, tablets or computers. In addition, you don’t need any special expertise to create a podcast about anything.
Many people already listen to at least one podcast. If you create an e-learning podcast for your employees, it is a concept most will understand be comfortable with, and that leads to better engagement.
Benefits of Podcasting for Employee Training
Podcasts are already used in various spheres of business, so—naturally—companies have also started using them as a convenient tool for development and training. Podcasts are mobile and available 24/7. Employees can study whenever they want—downloading new episodes anywhere and anytime.
Podcasts also offer a number of opportunities for employee retention. Not everyone is patient enough to read long articles or to watch recorded lectures. Not only does your audience need to deal with distractions, but it also has to stay focused, which is not easy given that our attention span doesn’t exceed 10 seconds. Podcasts don’t require people to find some specific time for listening, as the audience can listen to podcasts while doing virtually anything. Your employees can multitask and listen to podcasts while filing papers, driving, or eating lunch. The more they listen to your content, the more engaged they become with the company. They feel connected to you, which reduces turnover.
Employee Training with Podcasts: Create Your Own Podcast
If you want to use podcasts within your e-Learning program or for other types of training, it’s important to make sure that your sound quality is good. Clifford Blyth, an HR manager at Masterra Professional Content Writers notes: “Even though podcasts are simple, you need to care about quality if you want your audience to be engaged.” I also suggest writing an outline before you record a podcast episode. You don’t need to be too concerned about the structure—as good podcasts typically have a more conversational tone. Just jot down key questions and the most important points, and let your conversation flow naturally.
- Find a reliable audio editing tool. Buy a good microphone and a pop filter to get clear and nice audio. You may also want to outsource a voice actor who can work based on your script.
- Use stories from the real life to ensure the emotional connection. Share some anecdotes related to the subject of each episode.
- Invite interesting guests. Guests add variety and provide new viewpoints. It’s important to provide a diverse perspective.
- In each episode, focus on a single issue. This is especially important for educational podcasts, as your employees must be able to focus on a certain objective.
- Analyze your content and evaluate its effectiveness. Encourage your employees to give their feedback. Don’t forget that interactivity makes e-learning much more effective, so don’t forget to stay in touch with your audience.
The Best Podcasts for Employee Training
To help you develop and refine your employee training podcasts, here are six podcasts that provide tremendous insight and great tips:
1. The eLearning Coach Podcast
This podcast is useful if you’re interested in the latest trends in instructional design and e-learning. The host, Connie Malamed always chooses the most relevant and discussed topics, such as learning games, infographics, Tin Can API, etc. She invites many interesting guests who share their valuable experience and ideas.
2. Gamification Talk Radio
This podcast is devoted to gamification. It is great for those who want to improve their client engagement, corporate learning, and employee onboarding. The host Sententia Gamification invites various gamification gurus and other people from this area who share useful tips and effective techniques that can immediately increase the efficiency of your training.
3. Rod’s Pulse Podcast
The host of this podcast, Rodney Murray, started it in 2006, and since then, he interviews the best instructional designers. There are more than 160 episodes that cover everything related to e-learning and tech education. Another good thing about this podcast is that you can find many useful resources about the subject of any episode by checking Rodney’s blog.
4. Training Unleashed
This podcast provides many tips and tricks that will help you make your employee training more effective and profitable. Here you can learn about new creative approaches and familiarize yourself with the newest training practices.
5. Leadership Insights Podcast
This podcast will be appreciated by team leaders and everyone who cares about his or her organization and corporate culture. There are many educational interviews with inspiring leaders. They share their stories from real life, introduce new effective tools, and explain how to improve communication and implement innovative solutions successfully.
6. Trends & Issues in Instructional Design, Educational Technology, and Learning Sciences
Tim Gree and Abbie Brown are professors of instructional design. Every two weeks, they talk about new trends in the industry. The hosts make predictions on educational technology and address important issues of the e-learning industry. Learn how augmented reality and mobile devices change e-learning as we know it and listen to the latest news from the world of employee education.
Improve Employee Training with Podcasts
Podcasts are a convenient and effective tool for employee training. They provide important information in the most accessible way possible—making them a solid choice to replace other forms of learning. In addition, everyone can create his or her own educational podcast without any significant investment. Employees can listen to the new episodes while driving to work or doing their everyday routine in the office—learning something new and getting more connected with your company at the same time.