The research paper looks at human resources and the new technology in training employees. It begins by providing definitions of human resource, training, and technology use in the department. Human resource managers are responsible for considering employees’ needs and advising the management on the new technology which can improve employee performance. There is also a discussion on why the topic is important for a human resource manager. Technology is very dynamic and thus every human resource manager should continually study the new technology.
Then there is an overview of the efficacy of the use of new technology in training of employees with the cost reduction being the primary benefit. The paper further covers the current literature that is against the efficiency of the use of e-training. There is also a discussion of the best study method of how the researches have been conducted. There is then an overview of how the perception of the e-training has been changed and the future of human resource training with the use of technology. There is an opinion on why the study is important in the employee training. Lastly, in the conclusion, there is a summary of the reasons why every human resource department should adopt the technology.
Human resource is a central department in every business. It looks at the wellbeing of employee and ensures maximization of production. The department is, therefore, responsible for advising the company on the methods that can increase productivity and reduce the cost of production with the aim of increasing profit and competence. In-service training is one of the methods that human resource uses to help employees improve their skills and knowledge in their field of operation. Traditionally, the training involved a class type of training given to an employee by an instructor.
Most of this instruction happened outside the company, and the facilitator's remuneration was high. With time, there have been developments of new technology in the market that have eased and lowered the cost of training. The purpose of the paper is to analyze the usefulness of new training technique in the human resource department. New training technology involves the application of e-learning and video conferences to train employees and improve their competence.
Human resource is a term used to describe employee or people who work in an organization, firm, institution or any form of business. The number of human resources in an organization depends on its size and the type of work to be performed. Some fields require highly trained personnel. The areas include hospitals, schools, managerial positions, and law firms among others. These professionals spend a minimum of three years in colleges or universities to receive training and later attach themselves to an organization to practice what they have learned in class before they are fit for employment. Other firms do not require intensive prior training; for example, domestic workers hardly undergo formal education to qualify for the job.
Human resource is also used to refer to a department in an organization that deals with the management of employee and everything that concerns staff, which is also known as human resource management. The main aim of this unit is to measure labor provided by the employees and to ensure they are working in favorable environment so that they can maximize output. The employee in this branch has the mandate to recruit new staff members, selecting the fittest candidate and promoting talented workers. Training of employee is also the term of the office in this department. The training aims at improving the human resource job performance and acquisition of new technology and skills in the market.
Technology refers to the knowledge that enhances the way of doing things. Most organizations are now embarking on using new technology training methods to increase efficacy and reduce costs. The innovative training approach uses e-learning techniques where the internet and computers are the primary resources. To compare, the technology improves performance more than the old training methods. The initial cost is high, but the outcomes are remarkable. Any business aspiring to grow must embrace change in technology, and that is why most human resource management has turned to e-training.
Any organization that aims at improving productivity and quality ensures that an employee undergoes regular in-service training. The process is employee centered and time bound and aims atto solve a particular problem at the workplace. As a result, the employee feels more energized and obtains a sense of self-actualization. Moreover, a worker increases a level of achievement after receiving extra training while still in job. Employees feel the need to change the old ways of doing things to using the newly acquired skills. The process also helps them to relax and break the daily work monotony. Most of the in-service training incorporates team building, time management, and problem-solving channels and train employee on the new skills in their area of production. By contrast, an excessively preservative company in terms of the method of production may not be able to compete with other businesses. An organization like that one will have low-quality products and use more time for production, and thus the costs will also be high. Therefore, it is important for a company to ensure that the skills used are up to date. In fact, human resource management organizes such trainings which happen either inside or outside the organization. For example, benchmarking is a form of in-service training.
Technology is very dynamic and is known to reduce the production costs. Most companies use many of funds to provide in-service trainings as they send their employees to different places and other organization to acquire the desired knowledge. Overall, technology has made training simpler and cheaper. Employees can receive training from the comfort of their offices. For example, they can embark on e-learning where video conferences are the most common form of the instruction. Employees only need to connect to a video conference application and listen to the speaker. Other companies prefer to buy recorded tutorials and give employees time to watch them. They then assign a human resource manager to supervise how the employees implement the acquired knowledge. Therefore, the study of the impact of technology on training is an important topic to every human resource manager.
New training technologies have shown efficacy for the period they have been in the market. First, the materials used for training through e-learning are available at any time of the day, the month, and the whole year. The most common methods as presented by Casalino et al. include video conferencing, audio conferencing, web meeting, and the use of emails. They further state that the management will not have to keep on liaising with the trainer to know when they are less busy except for life video and audio conferencing. Moreover, those who could not have made it to the class training program because they were on leave can also benefit from this kind of training at their own time. By using technology, the employees will receive training at their pace, and they do not have to be taught much content for a short period because the trainer is in a hurry. The company does not need to worry about the space as training can happen in one of the rooms or different departments. Furthermore, slow learners may feel left out during the session as they fear to ask questions or request the facilitator to slow down. However, in the case of e-learning, these employees can always review the material to learn what they have not understood. Casalino et al. add that video and audio conferencing allows the learners to seek clarification of what they have not understood. Fast learners can move more quickly and start applying the learned concept after a short time.
The e-learning training is cheaper compared to the class setting type of training. For example, there is no limit in the number of employees who can receive learning materials via the email. Casalino et al. argue that once the human resource manager has obtained the materials, he or she send them to all other employees. The day out also means there will be no production done because the company will be closed or have a few employees to take care of the customers and activities that require constant attention. In terms of e-learning, the company only spends money to buy the training software. The enterprise needs to allocate a few hours a day to lessons; hence, production will still continue, and no transport or conference money will be spend. Most small-medium enterprises prefer this technology over the in-class training.
Moreover, documentation of the academic work is simple. One does not need to store papers and huge files of every lesson. The employee saves them as soft notes and sends to personal emails for future reference. The software can also be used in the future to train other employees or retain the same ones if they have forgotten the skills without incurring extra cost. The company also uses the same materials for different branches of the same company. To compare, the classroom training demands more money as the number of employees receiving training increases. Rousmaniere et al. assert that the method means that there will be no paper that will later end up polluting the environment; hence, it is a green method of training. Thus, the company reduces costs on the number of paper and files it needs to buy.
In the in-class training, employees can only gain knowledge from a few trainers. They may have few solution options to the companies' problems. E-learning gives room to source solutions and ideas from a variety of instructors and resources from all over the world. The employees can look for a solution in real-time and solve the problem within a short time as opposed to waiting until the company can find a consultant. They will be able to compare the trainers offering the best services at an affordable price. Moreover, the companies can view other entrepreneurs’ comments before they can buy software. They can share feedback with other enterprises in the same industry and can quickly discover why they are not as competitive as others. Therefore, the company can improve the productivity methods and other areas such as time management.
Another advantage is that content retaining in e-learning is higher than in the in-class training. Minina and Nikitina have observed that most learners find this method interesting. This type of training also has a broad range of learning methods. For example, a learner may search information on the internet, use slideshows to review the information, play recorded information, and read soft notes. One can always choose the method that interests them. When the employees are needed to look for information on their own, they become active learners, which is one of the best ways to ensure that a person does not forget information quickly.
In e-learning, the employees can evaluate themselves easily using the provided tests. Bircan and Genler observed that at the end of the tutorials, the trainers assign learners self-tests. Learners can pass them without feeling intimidated and at their pace. They do not need the human resource manager to come and tell them when they should proceed to the next test after completing the first one. They can always ask for assistance from other workers or the internet without the manager having to know about it. The employee, therefore, gains a sense of independence as they do not have to expose their weaknesses. Employees can also take advantage of this kind of training to further their studies. They can enroll in e-learning programs without interfering with the company working hours and without the need to continue asking for permission to go and attend classes or sit for exams.
Most companies still prefer the traditional method of training even when its cost is lower for various reasons. First, the initial cost of installing the technology required to support e-training is expensive. Bircan and Genler conclude that technology is changing at a rapid rate; hence, a company needs to move with innovation by replacing the old hardware which might fit the new technology. A small to medium entrepreneur considers this as an expensive procedure and may not be able to change as fast as the technology.
The e-learning does fit all forms of training especially in the fields that require practice. Rousmaniere et al. argue that an asynchronous approach which involves the use of recorded material may need someone to explain some concept like data and diagram interpretation. In addition, technology can never replace human beings; most learners need supervision and close monitoring from the trainers to improve. Some feel less motivated if they are responsible for controlling and monitoring their progress themselves than when they have a supervisor. There is no one to congratulate them if they make progress, unlike in-class training. Learners also spend more time searching for answers to an unclear concept, whereas receiving the explanation from the instructors can take a few minutes. Moreover, no one notices if an employee does not succeed in training. For example, a learner can only go through the materials without paying attention, and he is just seen by the administration as having received the training. In a one-on-one kind of training, it is easy to notice someone who is not attentive and do something to bring them back to class. According to Minina and Nikitina, many companies have noticed that some employees do not undergo the training when given the freedom to do it on their time, yet they claim that they did it. It is hard to clarify if indeed it is true unless the training is done at a central place with someone signing those who have attended.
In fact, the technology is not suitable for employees with visual or hearing impairment. Some employees consider this sort of training as annoying. They still have to spend time in their offices or company like any other day. It is not as motivating and refreshing as the outdoor or in class training. Minina and Nikitina noted that in the outdoor training, employees are instructed to do some stimulating activities which train them on management and team building. The online training can only explain how to create team building in a workplace. The impact is not the same as in e-training; team building knowledge is gained but not necessarily the skills. Furthermore, spending much time in front of a computer screen is not healthy. It might lead to eye problems as one continues gazing at a screen without much light. Poor sitting posture when receiving the training may result in back pains and neck pains due to turning of the face to the screen.
The technology may be the cheaper method for providing training, especially for large enterprises. However, it replaces the people training, hence leading to the lack of employment. The software can be sold to several companies and still they can be used. Kumpikait and Aiarnien observed that companies are now turning to the internet for consultancy rather than going to offices offering the services. Employment is always an issue in most countries and may become worse with the replacement of people with computers. The consultants and trainers may not make as much as they used to make with in-class training. Furthermore, there is much competition on the internet, and one has to reduce the cost of their software to remain competitive.
There are different methods of analyzing a situation. Kumpikait and Aiarnien conducted a study on the “New Training Technologies Developing Human Resources.” In their research, they used different companies to observe the outcome of investing in various resources. They noted that businesses that invested more in technology and computers have greater returns than those which invested in other types of resources. These companies used technology in all fields of production. They first trained top management on the use of technology before training the other employees. The area that first received the training was human resource management. Then they used the same technology to train employees on work related skills to improve their fitness. The competence areas taught included skills and knowledge acquisition in the related field and improvement of behavior which are the primary values in the enhancement of performance. All the companies reported growth in output and the employees showed a level of satisfaction.
Other than improved productivity, the companies also reported that their production cost had gone down. The reduction of costs became possible because of the low fee of training programs that they easily found on the internet, looking for an affordable and efficient training program. They were able to solve some environmental problems as they did not have much waste. The companies were also able to save time which could have been spent outside the workplace. Employees were also able to receive training at their own convenient time. However, the companies said they encountered some challenges. One of the problems was to deal with employees who were resistant to change and techno-phobic. They also realized that not all training types could succeed through e-learning. They also incurred a high initial cost as they had to change and improve their old devices which could not have supported the learning process. Despite the challenges, they still preferred the technology because of its many advantages.
The study article also compares the traditional and the new training methods. It discovers that old methods only focuses on improvement of the current job position, while the new technology prepares employees for even higher job ranks for which they might apply in the future. The kind of training helps the company not to undergo any loss or slow production in the event they lose a senior manager. The enterprise will just pick one of the employees with a record of exemplary performance to fill the position since they have also received the same training. There is a recommendation that some training types should still require using the old methods. Thus, the combination of the two approaches may bring the best results.
The technique used by the authors is the best way to explore the topic. The companies should understand whether the method they are about to apply will bring positive outcome or not. They should have a group that has succeeded in using the method so that they can emulate its strategies. The observation is of particular importance for small to medium enterprises which could collapse after incurring massive losses. The article provides the manager with details of how different companies applied the new technology training and with benefits and challenges they encountered. Therefore, they will be more prepared for any outcome should they decide to settle on the technology. A company that needs to try new technology should use the approach and then benchmark their employee to gain the skills if this requires many practical applications like the use of new types of machinery. Human resource manager can also resort to looking for more information on the method they settle on the internet. Gathering information from experienced organizations is the best way to avoid incurring losses out of new technology.
The perception on the use of technology has evolved over time. During the 1960s, the only departments that had embraced technology well were health care and security units because the government supported them. At this period, businesses considered new technology as expensive and were not sure of its future. Hence, they waited for other departments first to try it. E-learning started in the late 1990s with the emergence of the internet that allowed people to learn about subjects of their interests. In the same period, colleges and universities started offering online courses to people who could not make it to school physically due to distance and lack of time. Schools began improving the technology, and in early 2000, they already devised their improved designs. The advancement helped to reduce the cost of online learning for both the school and the students. Thus, enrolment numbers started going higher as the technology improved.
Businesses started using e-learning to train their employees in mid-2000. Large enterprises that would have afforded to change their devices regularly started using the technology. At this time, they began by training them on the use of new technological devices in the market and how to organize e-learning. Most employees also took advantage of the newly acquired knowledge and enrolled in educational courses without affecting their working time. Today, most companies including the small to medium entrepreneur have adopted e-learning. The adoption happened after observing how other companies have benefited from the program and how the companies that did not embrace technology collapsed. However, most companies alternate e-learning with the traditional in-class training to ensure a smooth transition of employees who sometimes are resistant to change. The alternation is also helping employees to acquire knowledge that they cannot gain through e-learning. The technology has also become cheaper as people can now use the smartphones e-learning apps.
Technology is very dynamic, and e-learning is also changing at a rapid rate. HR managers should always be updated on the new and more efficient training methods in the market and advise the organization accordingly. They should be aware of the methods under research and follow them until they are ready for market. For example, the research that they should be familiar with includes gamification which is also known as video games. Most learners like games, and thus it will be an interesting way of learning and acquiring new skills and knowledge. In the game, an individual usually proceeds to a higher level after successfully completing the one level. Similarly, each level can be designed to cover specific skills. For instance, people have already started learning languages through the games, filling in words describing a given situation or pictures. The technology is not in the market yet for learning purpose as it has not fully developed.
Another cheap method of training that companies should embrace is the use of e-mobile apps. Mobile phones make it possible for a person to learn from where they are and communicate with others instantly. One can collect data quickly using the mobile camera, compass, and record it for the future use. This information can be shared quickly with other company employees and managers. Most businesses have started using social media to reach out to clients and advertise their products. However, only a few are using video and microblogs on these sites which are more efficient. Companies should consider exploring more on the most useful tools on social media and the internet.
Human resource managers are using technology to look for and maintain talents in the company. They advertise positions in the web providing a broad geographical region of where they can get the employees. It is possible for a company to operate totally online in the future and human resource management will entirely work through technology. Therefore, a company will need fewer managers who will manage the software.
Area of the human resource should embrace new training technology. It makes the process easier to conduct even when the number of employees is high. The company is also able to save much money as they do not need to pay for space and transport. In-class trainers are also more expensive than e-training. Using new training technology will also help employees to familiarize with new devices in the market which the company uses as an easy way of communication. The manager should always look for new training methods presented in the market and chose the best ones. He or she should also choose the way that is suitable for their business, and the one that makes employees feel comfortable. A company should eliminate any methods that show no results and replace it with a more efficient approach. Furthermore, a business that does not adapt to changes is at risk of collapsing and using much money in production.
On the other hand, the human resource management should not discard the old training methods. Practices should be in the field with a trainer rather than through simulation classes. The company should also organize outdoor activities for employees to relax and rest. In these outdoor activities, they should be trained to apply the knowledge they have gained in the e-learning classes. There should also be a follow-up program to evaluate the efficacy of a chosen learning method. The monitoring will help the management to know the problems that employees are going through and assist in resolving them. Online monitoring can only tell who has low or high production but cannot explain the reason behind the poor production. A combination of the two methods will help to retain talents in the company and reduce turnover. Therefore, it is important for every HR manager to adopt the new technological methods.
According to the research, new study methods that use e-training are necessary for the training of employees, and every human resource department should adopt them. The technology is cheap to use and can train staff for a fixed cost despite the number of learners. The company does not have to pay for transport and training place as e-learning can take place anywhere including the office and the company meeting room.
It also helps to conserve the environment as there is no paper for documentation which may later become waste. Employees can also receive training at their pace and at the convenient time. However, the method should be combined with outdoor training to ensure efficacy. A human resource department willing to apply the new training technology should first study about its advantages and disadvantages so that it can handle any shortcoming.