Nearly everything is offered virtually nowadays. Virtual trainings, courses, career fairs, conferences and even concerts are happening across the globe, redefining how people engage in learning, recreation and job-related activities. Virtual events are also gaining traction in the public sector due to a “perfect storm” of overlapping factors, such as extended travel restrictions, greater public scrutiny on in-person conferences and advancement of interactive communications technology.
The huge surge of the virtual platform is not retracting anytime soon and it is constructive to stop and look at the current status of virtual training and how to best take advantage of it. In particular, the virtual movement provokes the question:
Can anything be virtualized and what content works best on the digital stage?
GovLoop recently explored the topic of virtual events and trainings through a survey. Through feedback from nearly 350 members, we obtained some great insights regarding virtual events in government (Download full guide here).
One question asked respondents to complete the following statement:
I believe the following topics work best for virtual events and training:
Members were able to pick the multiple choices below:
- New Hire On-boarding
- Leadership/Soft Skills
- Technical Training
- Mandatory Compliance Training
- Career Fairs
- Multi-Subject Conferences
Below is a chart that shows how respondents answered:
As shown above, three out of four respondents (74%) believed that a virtual platform works best for mandatory/compliance training.
Respondents also found virtual events valuable in covering leadership and soft skills (57%), technical training (52%) and new hire on boarding (40%).
Across content areas, implementation was viewed as a crucial component to successful and enriching virtual events. As one respondent noted, “I believe it depends on the quality of the training, presenter, and audience…most topics would lend themselves to virtual presentation with the right presenter and mode.” Engagement tools and the enthusiasm of presenters were also major elements to putting on a memorable virtual event.
- Innovation jams
- Case study presentations
- Subject-specific academic and professional conferences
- Armchair discussions/presentations
- Benefits info (retirement planning etc.)
- Informing new directions from top
- Presentation style events
- Product demos
- Public hearings & workshops
Ultimately, as one respondent noted, it “depends on learning objectives to determine if a virtual environment would be the best approach.” Event planners should consider whether virtual can effectively impart intended content to their target audience.
What content do you think works well virtually?
Do you have any other creative virtual ideas to add to the list?
On a related note, you are cordially invited:
- To join the Government Virtual Engagements Community of Practice to engage in ongoing dialogue about virtual events and training in government.
- To please join us for a free online training on Thursday, August 8th – How to Transform Traditional Conferences and Training for Government. REGISTER HERE.
- GovLoop Human Resources Hub
- Guide: Guide to Virtual Events and Training in Government
- Groups: e-Learning, Government Virtual Engagements Community of Practice, Knowledge Management in Government, and Instructional Systems Design