When you’re starting with a blank slate, creating training material for your employee onboarding program can be both exciting and daunting. Exciting because you know you’re taking the first step to a more efficient and effective training program for your employees, but daunting because creating training material can seem like a long and difficult task.
First Things First
When you are creating your training material, you need to know what topics to create content about. This is when doing an in-depth assessment like the Kirkpatrick Model is a great thing. There are probably a few that jump immediately to mind when you think of topics, but if you take some time and do a scan of your and your coworkers day-to-day, you will see there are tons of topics you could train on.
Here are a few topics to consider:
- Your Company’s Mission: Most companies have a mission or vision statement. Talk about where that came from and break it down so your employees know exactly what it means and how to apply it to their daily activities.
- Your Company’s History:Especially for new hires, it can be really helpful to know where your company has been and how it got to where it is today.
- Typical HR Stuff: How do I track time off? What are the company norms? Where are the spare pens at? Answering these questions in a short training guide can clear up a lot of confusion.
- Compliance:Workplace harassment, information security training, and anything specific to your company are all areas that need training, and likely reviews on an annual basis.
- Department Overview: Create a high level overview of each department, what they do and how they all work together.
- Software: You’re likely using several different software applications to get your job done efficiently. Each piece should have training associated with it so a new employee can be self-sufficient.
- Who’s Who:In addition to covering key leadership, each department can have their own ‘lesson’ on who’s who and some interesting facts about them. This can help build common connections among team members and promote a stickier culture.
- Industry Overview:Create material about your company’s industry, who it serves, and some other facts that give a new hire a baseline understanding.
- What We Do:This may seem obvious, but there are often nuances of what a company does that may not be apparent at first. Having training material on it can help you cover your bases here.
- Key Wins:Talk about some of your company’s success stories so that they don’t just sit in pockets of a handful of people.
- How We Communicate:In addition to how corporate communication is done, talk about what the best ways are to communicate/work with other employees. Each company has a different culture related to the best ways to communicate, so don’t gloss over this.
These are just 11 topics, but there will obviously be more as you think about your specific company and some of the training needs you may have. In addition to all of these company-wide types of training material, consider opening it up to each department for their own specific content. Each department likely has just as much of a training need, but often get overlooked in being included in creating a training program that is served at the organization wide level.
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