March 2021
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TD Magazine

Virtual Training Is Here to Stay

Monday, March 1, 2021

Even when they return to the office, workers do not want all in-person training.

With 2021 now in full swing, talent development professionals can begin to reflect on the past year. They have many data points to consider for how their L&D programs responded to the extraordinary circumstances of 2020 and what learning opportunities to offer when workers return to the office.


Kahoot!'s 2020 Learning at Work report offers some of that data. Researchers asked more than 400 workers what they want in the future with L&D. The good news is that workers see L&D as essential to their success. In fact, almost half of respondents said that since the transition to working remotely, L&D is even more important. Less than one-tenth see it as less important.

Talent development professionals have risen to the challenge with the shift to virtual training. One-quarter of workers said their organization's L&D offerings improved, while almost half said it hasn't changed, which is nothing for talent development professionals to be ashamed of, given the unprecedented nature of 2020. Still, there's room to grow. Just 14 percent of respondents said learning has been worse when delivered remotely, and only 5 percent reported that L&D stopped entirely.

Unsurprisingly, because virtual training can be effective as a development tool, most workers don't want to return to entirely in-person training experiences when they are back in the office. Many want a blend of virtual and in-person training; some want more self-paced asynchronous virtual training; and fewer want group virtual training options.

Organizations have an opportunity to build a culture of learning. Of respondents, the majority said they are more engaged when they believe their company has a strong culture of learning. While many businesses, workers, and talent development professionals struggled in 2020, the data shows that L&D remains important.

About the Author

I'm a developmental editor at ATD Press, working primarily with books. I joined the ATD team in December 2014. I review manuscripts and team up with authors to produce well-written and well-developed books. Before ATD, I worked as a jack-of-all-trades editor for a small editing and design firm in DC. with a focus on economic and development reports. I have a master's in publishing from George Washington University.

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