Blog: How online training can help you attract, develop, and retain employees

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Bob Duprey, founder of Restaurant Playbooks, looks at how operators can deliver high-quality, effective and engaging learning experiences for their team

Over the last 20 years I’ve worked with Fortune 500 companies across all industries to help them implement online and mobile (eLearning) solutions. During that time, I have been privileged to work with some of the world’s largest quick service restaurant (QSR) organisations.

Since the early days of online learning, QSR chains have been utilising some of the most sophisticated eLearning, 3D games and simulation environments to onboard employees, improve operational consistency, decrease turnover and significantly reduce time to competence.

For perspective, just think about what the technology environment looked like just 10 years ago. Connectivity, especially WiFi, was nowhere near as powerful and omnipresent as it is to today. Streaming video was in its infancy. Today, no one would tolerate the ‘loading’, ‘buffering’ and start-stop video experiences of those early days. As far as devices, there was no tablet that offered a similar experience to a desktop or laptop.

Level the playing field

Fast forward to today’s situation. We now have very fast and reliable inter-connectivity with the world, with high fidelity, TV-quality viewing on a device that fits in our back pocket. So we have the opportunity to level the playing field.

Today’s independent restaurant operator has the capability to deliver high quality, effective and engaging learning experiences to every employee – 24/7. In the battle to attract and retain top quality talent, this is a critical paradigm shift and game changer.

Gone are the days when you can ask your new employees to sit in a training session for three+ hours, or ask them to watch a video, and expect them to be fully engaged and interested in the experience. To be fair, no one has the attention span for that anymore, right? Today’s workforce is an inquisitive bunch, they are used to using YouTube and Google for answers, on their phone, immediately.

Today’s workforce wants to know you are invested in their development and have moved on from old school training approaches. One of the best ways to gain a competitive edge and attract, develop, and retain top talent, is to implement a modern, mobile training programme.

If you want to relate to your team, the way you deliver information and training should capitalise on the way your team members use their devices in every other area of their lives. Well-designed online and mobile training is one of the most effective ways to accomplish this.

Some key benefits of online/mobile training include:

Consistency of content, availability 24/7, ability to track and record progress, training time and cost savings, ability to reinforce training – and automate the training process.

Really well developed online learning puts the control in the learners’ hands. Modern learners like to choose their own paths, and dip in and out as it suits them. They like to explore; they don’t like boundaries built into typical linear training.

How can you transition to online/mobile training?

The best way to get started is with generic, off-the-shelf courses that can be accessed on a subscription basis. There are a number of companies that specialise in offering off-the-shelf eLearning for the hospitality industry. It’s important to assess the quality of a vendor’s courses according to a criteria that ensures an engaging and effective mobile experience for their employees.

Further details:

Please feel free to contact Bob Duprey for a free guide to assessing off the shelf eLearning courses:

Restaurant Playbooks offers both custom eLearning and off the shelf solutions for the hospitality industry:


Bob Duprey