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5 Unique Ways to Improve Workplace Training and Onboarding


1. Conveying an employer brand that’s based on values

The way employers are perceived by current, former and future employees sets the tone for the rest of your talent engagement, whether it’s onboarding a new hire or training existing employees. It’s important to ensure that your values shine through your employer branding efforts. Just take Teach For Malaysia’s employer brand as an example—the first line on their Work with Us page is:


“Do what you love; love what you do. Create a change you believe in.”


Teach for Malaysia is a values-driven organisation that draws a direct link between their achievements and their dedication to their core values. They consistently practice these four core values, which are the first thing new applicants see on their website:

          • Sense of Possibility
          • Excellence
          • Collaboration
          • Integrity

By aligning employees with organisational goals, values and ethics, the organisation is able to have a higher level of workforce commitment—alongside having a consistent place in the Top 100 Graduate Employers list in Malaysia.


2. Building a community that’s motivated to learn together

Top employers ensure that people can keep learning with a workplace community that will support them.

In 2019, AirAsia Berhad was perceived by many employees and job seekers to have the most pleasant work atmosphere in Malaysia (EBI report). And that’s because they’re constantly motivated to learn from each other’s experiences. One great example of this is their #TalentConnect programme which was piloted in 2017.

The programme is a platform for its ‘Allstars’ (AirAsia employees) to share their knowledge of the aviation industry, as well as AirAsia’s culture, with young talent visiting from various institutions and organisations. We’re really impressed by their focus on social learning in this programme, visible in this video recap:




The challenge with this approach would be managing time and conflicting schedules to get everyone into the same room. In this case, teams can consider using an online learning tool which still encourages social interaction, such as OpenLearning.


3. Assessing employee training and onboarding in authentic ways

Authenticity in assessment is not about measuring what you know—it’s about doing something with what you know. Instead of relying only on grades and quizzes, savvy employers such as IKEA Malaysia assess their employees’ learning in authentic ways.

It’s difficult to imagine what an ‘authentic assessment’ is for your organisation beyond performance reviews that determine job progression. That’s why it’s reassuring to note that among IKEA Malaysia’s measures of professional learning, there’s also a measure for how often their staff go for lunch together.

Our own internal training and onboarding courses at OpenLearning use the Guskey Model to create authentic assessments for training and onboarding.


4. Making time for meaningful training by automating repetitive tasks

Maxis has embraced automation by using online platforms for recruitment, on-boarding, performance management, learning and development, and talent review. This allows them to save time and resources while focusing on meaningful interaction.

Maxis took the digital training leap in 2014, after a nine-month evaluation process. It was a project that required them to configure more than 60 business processes in about 7 months, using a self-service platform that didn’t require extra training sessions.

For recruitment, they conduct digital interviews with potential new hires and report that this has shortened the recruitment processing time by removing much of the administrative work.

Automating the more ‘transactional’ people manager functions is a way to free up time for more meaningful functions like evergreen candidate sourcing, productivity, and retention of new hires.

While Maxis did this on a larger scale than most companies can afford, it is certainly possible for smaller teams to reduce the amount of time that is spent on repetitive HR tasks with careful planning and technology.

➡️ Read more: Find out why OpenLearning is the preferred platform for course creators.


5. Empowering employees to put training into practice

The word, ‘empowerment’ has taken on various levels of meaning. But when it comes to the workplace, many companies are recognising the importance of empowering employees with the necessary authority, clear expectations, and support to put their training into practice.

As a company with the tagline of ‘Humanising Financial Services’, Maybank makes it a point to invest in their employees’ development.

In 2018, Maybank launched the ‘FutureReady’ digital upskilling platform for its employees to learn digital awareness, data-driven decision making, human-centred design, agile, future communication and risk & governance in the digital world.

But it doesn’t end with the platform. The HR team has trained each team manager to conduct ‘FutureReady Lab sessions’ where employees are encouraged to put their training into practice within their respective teams.

It must be working because this year, Maybank reported that they had a lower attrition rate than the industry average.

These are just a few of the amazing employers who are taking their HR practices into the future through careful curation of the employee experience, from onboarding new hires to training seasoned staff. What are some others that you admire or have experienced yourself?


OpenLearning - Training and onboarding by the team, for the team. Free guides and templates.

Topics: Employee Training and Onboarding

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