9 Proven Employee Training Methods for Optimal Engagement and Performance

Last Updated September 8th, 2020

How much effort are you putting into training your employees? If it’s something you’re constantly investing in and prioritizing in your company, you’re on the right track. You see, by adopting effective employee training methods, you’re putting your employees — and in turn, your business — on the path to success.

According to a study by the American Society for Training and Development, businesses that invested in employee training reported 24% higher profit margins and a 218% higher income per employee. So, you really can’t afford to make it an afterthought.

employee training methods

“If you don’t have good, solid training for your employees from the get-go, it makes it really hard for them to do their job on a daily basis.”

-Laura Huntington, BombBomb HR Generalist

You need to be equipped with the best employee training methods for your organization to thrive. “The more communication and training that we give, the better. This will ensure that everything is consistent and everybody hears the same thing,” says Sandra Martinez, BombBomb Talent Management Director.

Keep reading for a list of nine proven training methods for employees that we’ve seen success with at BombBomb…

1. New Employee Orientation

Before new hires can really get settled into their roles, they need to know all the basics of their employment and the organization they are working for. This is accomplished during a New Employee Orientation.

During this orientation, a member of your Talent Management team will give new employees an overview of benefits and employee handbook policies. This is also an opportunity to give your new hires a lay of the land of your office building (if applicable) and introduce them to other team members along the way.

Offer them the chance to ask any questions they may have, and then it’s time for more structured onboarding employee training methods.

2. Onboarding Video Training

Now it’s time to give new employees a deeper dive into the company they’re working for. At BombBomb, we do this via Onboarding Video Training, hosted on a learning management system (LMS).

It consists of a series of educational videos and quizzes encompassing two days worth of video onboarding training. It includes all the BombBomb knowledge needed to get acquainted, such as:

 Everything about BombBomb and its culture
 Video introductions from senior leadership
 Walkthrough of company core values and how they work
 Workplace/office etiquette
 Overview of the product

The training is efficient and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. Just tailor training videos to your organization, and then all you need to do is keep them up to date.

3. Hands-On Department Training

Next comes onboarding training on the department level. This is where the hands-on learning really begins for a new hire’s specific role.

There may be some initial video training, but this is mainly interactive on-the-job training. Of course, employee training methods like this will vary by department. But the goal remains the same: to give employees the knowledge and experience they need to perform well in their role.

For example, when a new sales professional joins the team at BombBomb, they are given a sales onboarding training checklist. It outlines the hands-on training components they are expected to complete each week. There are also designated trainers for each lesson.

Give the role of salesperson, training involves role-playing, shadowing, and one-on-one coaching through recorded sales calls.

Daniel Hall, BombBomb Director of Sales and Enablement, says the key is to let new employees find the things they need to improve on first. So before offering feedback on work, ask them, “If you had to do it over again, what would you change?

“Let them coach themselves first. That way the training is sinking in.”

-Daniel Hall, BombBomb Director of Sales and Enablement

4. New Hire Immersion

The last of the onboarding employee training methods is New Hire Immersion. At BombBomb, this training occurs 30 to 45 days after an employee has been working for the company. Laura Huntington, BombBomb HR Generalist, explains why:

“Our thought is you got your feet wet enough from your initial learning. But maybe you’re reaching the point of having questions about how things flow or work together,” Laura says. “New Hire Immersion offers exposure to other parts of the company.”

New Hire Immersion is a full-day training in which leaders from every department talk to new employees about what their department does. It also offers context about how departments work with one another, and where the employee falls within the organization.

There’s also a social component to the training with a lunch and Happy Hour to allow employees to build relationships with those in leadership.

“This gives new employees exposure to senior leaders so they can form relationships with them. That way employees feel more comfortable approaching them later for mentorship or questions.”

-Sandra Martinez, BombBomb Talent Management Director

5. New Manager Training

Among the essential types of employee training is New Manager Training. We’ve established that effective employee training methods are crucial for employees to do their jobs — and for new management, this means learning how to manage their team members.

At BombBomb, Talent Management hosts New Manager Training sessions for everyone stepping into management roles in the company for the first time. They go over:

 What the hiring process entails and what questions they’re allowed to ask during interviews
 What 1:1 meetings and check-ins with employees entail
 How to overcome performance issues
 And any other management role responsibilities

6. Unconscious Bias Training

This type of employee training is different in that it’s an open forum. There’s no one teaching anything. Instead, it’s a discussion.

We hold a mandatory Unconscious Bias Training session annually. Employees are broken up into smaller groups for this.

They participate in discussions about unconscious biases and how we can all work together to eliminate those in the workplace.

Laura explains that Unconscious Bias discussions are effective because “people really open up and share a lot.”

“People didn’t realize how serious some of these unconscious biases were and how they can really impact their fellow coworkers.”

-Laura Huntington, BombBomb HR Generalist

7. Open Enrollment Training

Benefits change. It’s inevitable. So every year, it’s important to have an Open Enrollment Training that covers all benefits in detail, as well as any changes to the benefits package.

Invite benefits reps to come in and present the information during the training and answer any questions your employees may have.

This gives your employees all the information they need to make informed decisions about the benefits they opt into during the Open Enrollment period.

8. Professional Development

Want to keep your employees engaged and excited about their roles? Give them the tools and resources they need to grow and improve. Encourage professional development within your organization.

Motivate your employees to take time during the workweek to read professional development books, listen to educational podcasts, and take courses.

BombBomb has funds allocated for each employee’s learning and development. Employees can use this funding for courses, certifications, conferences, and more. Do the same, and not only will you have more engaged employees, but also employees with new skills to bring to the table.

9. Skill Refinement Training

While professional development is about acquiring new skills, this employee training method is about refining existing skills.

This happens at the department level and consists of keeping the skills required of your employees fresh in their minds.

In Sales at BombBomb, this happens in a cycle. The team goes through one stage of the sales process in each lesson. Once they reach the end of the cycle, it starts over again. However, every time the cycle begins again, the lessons are taught in different ways whether that be verbally, visually, or via interactions (like role play).

Daniel even occasionally assigns a senior team member to lead training sessions. “Hearing the information from their peers is a little bit different than hearing it from their managers,” he explains. That’s why it works.

Tips for Successfully Implementing Employee Training Methods

You now have an array of employee training methods to try at your company, but how do you ensure successful implementation? Here are Sandra and Laura’s tips for success below…

1. Get Leadership Buy-In

To get employee engagement in all types of employee training, there needs to be buy-in from your leadership team. They need to see the value that these training sessions offer employees.

“Show them that it’s helping the organization and culture overall. That way, they’ll be willing to invest the time,” Sandra advises. “Help them understand why it’s important, so they can encourage managers and employees to not only attend but also actively participate.”

2. Gather Employee Training Feedback and Use It

After training takes place at BombBomb, employees are asked to participate in a survey about the sessions. This is what the Talent Management team uses to gather feedback on the length and structure of each training, as well as the topics covered.

They take that feedback and use it to constantly improve and evolve training methods for employees. So if you want your employees to stay engaged and retain what you’re teaching, take their feedback into consideration when planning out your training sessions.

“Let employees guide the training they need.”

-Laura Huntington, BombBomb HR Generalist

3. If Training Virtually — Practice, Practice, Practice

If for any reason you need to conduct employee training virtually, you need to be prepared. Practice with the video conferencing software available to you.

Adjust your teaching structure to virtual learning and practice that, too. That way, it becomes second nature to conduct employee training methods online when you’re not able to meet in person.

Also, keep a note of employees hiding in the background of virtual training sessions, and gently call on them and ask for their thoughts.

Use Video to Communicate With Your Employees

Video plays a big part in employee training, but it also extends beyond that. Want to learn how to use video to communicate with your employees in different ways? Check out the article below…

Vivian Lopez

Vivian Lopez | About The Author

Storyteller, writer, editor. Mother of a fearless little girl. Content Marketing Writer, BombBomb. BA, California State University-Long Beach.