The Importance of Learner Feedback

Encouraging Feedback

It’s absolutely essential that employees engage in ongoing professional training. The benefits to your organization are immense, but it also helps enhance each employee’s career prospects, builds new skills, familiarizes them with changes to laws and regulations, and more. Online, or eLearning, has become perhaps the most frequently utilized option here, but it can be challenging in a number of ways.

Perhaps the most common area for corporate learning providers to struggle is with eLearner engagement and evolving the platform to meet the changing needs of an organization. There is a simple solution to both of these hurdles – employee feedback. With real, actionable feedback from employees, you’re able to prove that you actually care what they think of the LMS, as well as gain invaluable insight into what needs to be changed, why, and even what sorts of changes might be best received.

This leaves us with a question – how do you encourage eLearners to actually give you that feedback? There are several different ways this can be done.

Use a Forums & Message Boards

One way to encourage eLearner feedback is to create a forum or message board, and use a “feedback” or “suggestions” tab. Within this sub-board, employees are free to critique, review and make suggestions about LMS usability, individual units, and more. You’ll find that forums and message boards also offer a great way to foster eLearner interaction. Leveraging the old adage “to learn – teach”, students are able to ask questions of each other and answer questions for other students. This creates a closer-knit group, and can help a lot with motivation, as well. These can also be used for giving feedback to your learners, helping to provide more direction and even purpose to their studies.

Ask for Comments

Sometimes getting feedback is as simple as putting a process in place to regularly ask employees for feedback and comments throughout the training cycle.  Schedule to solicit feedback at the end of individual lessons, units and at the end of a specific course. If you are limited in how often you can or want to request feedback, it’s better to ask for comments at the end of a lesson or the unit as a whole, rather than at the end of an entire course. This ensures that the employee’s thoughts and feelings are “fresh” and top of mind.

Create Surveys and Then Encourage Learners to Complete Them

Surveys can be a lot like comment forms, but they generally offer more in-depth information about what an eLearner thought about specific elements of the unit or course. For instance, they might rate their satisfaction with the duration of the course, or the comprehensiveness of the study material. Provide surveys at the end of lessons or units, and make it mandatory that your leaners complete them before wrapping up.

Leverage your LMS and Provide Direction

When a user completes a specific segment of an online course, ask them for their feedback. This can be done directly in the LMS itself with a dedicated feedback page that appears on concluding a particular activity. Use a brief paragraph to explain why their feedback is needed and how you hope to use the information (ostensibly to improve the eLearning experience for everyone involved), and then provide them with a space to give their thoughts on the learning experience.

By encouraging your eLearners to provide their feedback, you achieve the dual goals of creating greater learner engagement, and gaining valuable insight into what your learners think of your program. This information can help you evolve, change and grow, ultimately culminating in a better learning experience for employees and more well-rounded workers with the training needed to succeed in the modern workplace.

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