5 things to include in your training manuals
From smoothing the onboarding process to upskilling existing employees on new products or systems, training manuals play a key role when it comes to teaching staff new tricks. Here are five key elements you should include to better engage your audience and boost learning and recall.
The best way to begin a training manual is to set out the learning objectives. What is the purpose of the manual? Is it, for example, to teach new employees about processes in your company? And what can the reader expect to get out of it?
You should also include any specific actions you want people to take during or after reading the training manual. This could be passing a written or oral assessment, or sharing what they've learnt with other staff.
Breaking your training manual down into sections makes it more digestible. A table of contents, for example, can help readers find a specific topic faster. To make navigation even easier, present your manual in a custom binder and add coloured tab dividers.
In each chapter of your training manual, make sure you tell people what's coming up at the beginning and add a bullet-point summary of what's been covered at the end. This can help with comprehension and cement what's been learnt.
3. Colour, graphics and images
To boost reader engagement, break up your content with colour, graphics and images. Research shows that our brains process visual content 60,000 times faster than text. Moreover, combining graphics and text tends to improve the overall learning experience as one complements the other.
Diagrams and flowcharts are great for explaining step-by-step processes. You can also include coloured boxes to highlight information and simple graphics to help bring your written content to life. You could, for instance, use a light bulb when asking questions or providing useful tips.
4. Interactive elements
Incorporating interactive elements is also a great way to make training manuals more engaging. Quizzes, problem-solving scenarios, exercises and talking points can motivate people to work on concepts they don't fully understand and assist learning through repetition.
You should also consider creating a digital as well as a printed manual. This gives you the opportunity to add other interactive features such as trackers that reward learners with progress badges and links to videos and other online resources.
5. Feedback request
Last but not least, include space for your employees to provide feedback. Training plays a crucial role in your business and operations, so it's important you keep improving your material to make sure it's as effective as it can be.
Include a section at the back of your manual or add a separate form that people can fill in and return. Wondering what questions to ask? Make sure you cover the objectives, course structure, content, outcomes and overall learning experience.
By including these elements in your training manuals, and ensuring your content is easy to understand and looks the part, you can make the overall learning experience more enjoyable and not to mention a lot more effective.
Want to elevate your company training manuals? Contact your local Snap Centre today