HR Effectiveness: Making the Case for Video

As many HR professionals can attest, attracting and keeping talent in a tight labor market can be challenging. While there’s not one silver bullet to achieve that goal, consistent and effective training can play a vital role in encouraging employees to stay and grow with your company.

From onboarding and explaining benefits to safety & technical training, establishing a culture of continual learning and engagement with employees can pay big dividends.

So what advantages does video training have over classroom sessions, written manuals and other forms of training?  Obviously, the details vary from one industry or company to another, but there are a few broad areas where video shines!

Lower Costs 

What?  Video production is expensive, isn’t it?  That may be your first thought when considering video. While there is certainly a cost to develop professional videos, it may be less expensive than you think. This is especially true if the videos are intended for internal (i.e., not marketing or customer facing) purposes. Internal videos need to be well produced and competent. But they don’t have to be extravagant.   For example, a simple onboarding welcoming message from a company leader might costs as little as $1500 or less to create.

More importantly, once produced, there’s little to no cost to keep using the video.  Contrast that with the costs of live training (location, instructor, travel) for each session and the cost of video that can serve you for many years starts to look very attractive by comparison.

Consistent Message

One of the biggest failures in training is inconsistency. In a perfect world, each employee learns critical information from someone who knows the topic at an expert level and also delivers that training effectively. Depending on the size and structure of your organization, that may or may not happen as often as you’d like.

With video, the message is delivered consistently and everyone gets the same experience.  A well designed video can cover all of the appropriate training and topics you need each employee to learn.

24/7 Accessibility

The likelihood that a training class will be offered on the date and time that fits the employees schedule and development needs are relatively low.  Waiting on a class to be offered reduces effectiveness as they wait.  Furthermore, when the class is offered, there’s no certainty that he/she will be able to attend if it conflicts with a project deadline or other priorities.

With video, getting the right training to the right person at the right time becomes much more likely.  And since video can be delivered on almost any platform (TV, computer or mobile device) learning isn’t constrained to a specific location or time.

Better Onboarding

Onboarding is more than just filling out employment forms, handing out employee handbooks and benefit selections. It’s your company’s first (and best) opportunity to get new employees off on the right foot. Don’t waste it, experts say.

Onboarding is a magic moment when new employees decide to stay engaged or become disengaged,” says Amy Hirsh Robinson, principal of the consulting firm The Interchange Group in Los Angeles. “It offers an imprinting window when you can make an impression that stays with new employees for the duration of their careers.

By featuring both company leaders and front line staff, a well executed onboarding video can help define a company’s culture and personality for new employees in a very authentic way.  It’s the perfect time to tell stories about the organization’s history, values, people and big-picture vision for the future.

Effectiveness, Engagement and Retention

Let’s face it, people don’t like to read things if they don’t have to. Afterall, why read the book when you can watch the movie?  Studies like the Picture Superiority Effect ( )have shown that using moving images increases both engagement and long term retention in learning.

Noted psychologist, Liraz Margalit in Entrepreneur Magazone writes  (, “Videos are processed by the brain 60,000 times faster than text. Think about the heavy lifting your cognitive system has to do when reading an article vs. watching a video clip!

Furthermore, a University of Turin study concludes that those who watched a training video of a technique were better able to apply that technique in practice than those who read about it.

Measurability & Insights

You can’t fix what you can’t measure.  By hosting your videos within an LMS (Learning Management System) you can easily track each employee’s progress within a training regimen and even incorporate quizzes at key benchmarks to make sure that the information is being absorbed.

Looking to see who on your team might be a good candidate for an assignment? No problem, get a report on which employees have completed a related course or group of courses..

More broadly, you can track results by department. For example, are there certain groups that are more (or less) engaged in training than others?  Knowing and understanding these trends can help you head off larger problems before they affect employee performance, moral or customer service.

Self Paced and Micro Learning

As the cell phone culture takes deeper root in society, people are consuming content in smaller and smaller bites. Whereas a live training session might last for several hours or even all day, many HR managers are finding that employees lose focus when presented with large chunks of information.

Video allows you to break down complex information into segments that employees can digest in short segments.  From a productivity standpoint, you don’t have to take someone out of their regular workplace for an extended period of time.  They can devote a short part of their day to learn something and apply the lessons right away.  And because a video is available to them at any time, they can easily go back and relearn a particular lesson should the need arise.

Feel free to contact us here, to find out how we can help with your video needs.