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How to Help Employees Remember What They Learned in Training

You may think your company provides adequate employee training. But is it really enough?

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Training employees can be crucial to a company's success. However, determining and providing the right training can be difficult.


Corporate learning platform Bridge recently surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. employees to measure employee retention and forgetfulness from trainings. In many cases, companies do train their employees, but those employees don't retain what they learn. In fact, 70 percent of survey respondents admitted to forgetting what they had been taught within 24 hours of learning.

Related: 4 Ways to Train Employees Effectively

That's not necessarily the fault of employees, though. Many employees don't use suitable information retention tools to help them remember. Less than half of employees admitted to using calendar reminders and Post-it notes, and only 9 percent said they refer to an employee handbook.

This presents a major opportunity for companies to offer corporate resources designed to boost information retention. Seventy-two percent of employees surveyed said they would benefit from receiving email reminders about topics covered in company training sessions.

When it comes to employee trainings, another shortcoming is that most companies aren't offering enough. Simply training an employee at the beginning of his or her job, or biannually, won't cut it. The less time that elapses between employee training sessions, the more likely that employees will remember what they learn. More than three-quarters of survey respondents reported they participate in employee training quarterly or less frequently.

Related: Will Training Help Improve Employee Performance?

Although information retention may not seem like a big problem, thousands of hours go to waste as employees answer questions and look up information repeatedly. Forty-five percent of respondents admitted to spending at least 15 minutes searching for information they had previously discussed. This may sound like an insignificant amount of time, but consider that an organization with 1,000 employees loses 5,850 hours because of this issue.

Additionally, 77 percent of respondents revealed that they spend 15 minutes answering questions about or explaining concepts they've already discussed. Again, for a company with more 1,000 employees, that amounts to 10,010 hours of wasted productivity.

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