Canada Association of Tourism Employees

Resolve Worker Efficiency Points With L&D

How to tactfully solve employee performance problems with online training

The misinformed believe that employee performance problems are due to a lack of training. However, there is one major problem underlying poor employee performance. Managers are doomed to instruct their team members to take online training courses without the right context. Especially those who ask employees to repeat previous online training. So how can we help our managers use online training resources effectively? We need to show them how to approach the problem from a people-centered approach, starting with staff training needs. Analysis, interviewing, and performance management support are all techniques we can equip our managers with to resolve employee performance issues.

Performance Management: A Person-Centered Approach

Let’s get this straight: Employee performance issues don’t necessarily mean that an employee doesn’t know how to do their job, i.e. that they need retraining. There can be a variety of problems at home or at work that can affect employee performance. Make sure your managers understand the basics of dealing with a holistic performance management discussion. Discussions about employee performance should focus on:

a. Stress at home or at work

Offer employees resources such as advice or occupational health care to support them in dealing with difficult emotions. Even something as seemingly simple as online support tools can help them minimize stress in the workplace.

b. Difficult relationships

In the workplace, complex forces often play a role between personalities. Take the time to understand and mentor employees to deal with people who create a negative environment.

c. Lack of resources

Underfunded corporate e-learning projects can contribute to poor employee performance. Take the time to properly assess and track budgets during an online training course. You may even be able to curate online training content or incorporate MOOCs into your online training strategy to reduce costs.

d. Regular employee performance reviews

The annual review should not reveal performance issues. Often problems are already embedded and it is too late to address them. Discuss online training goals, employee performance, and personal development monthly throughout the year.

e. Career development planning

Make sure you have appropriate career development plans for employees. A lack of direction or progress can cause stagnation in their current role, which can lead to employee performance problems.

How to properly deal with employee performance problems

When placed in context, online training can be a powerful tool for addressing employee performance issues. Online training can be based on technical skills or behavioral. For example health and safety or etiquette in the workplace. Whatever the topic, there are several elements to keep in mind when using online training to address employee performance issues:

1. Analysis of training needs

Only a deep immersion in knowledge and competence gaps is the only way to correctly assess the necessary online training content. Start here to assess if the online training is at the right level and make adjustments accordingly. When designing online training to address skill gaps, make sure that you are initially aware of the employee’s existing awareness and experience.

2. Attractive format and interactive elements

Online training needs to be an immersive experience so employees can withstand the distractions of the rest of the world. Choose videos, games, graphics, and graphics carefully to ensure that your employees get the most out of the online training experience. This also helps them to identify personal improvement potential themselves thanks to error-oriented learning.

3. Simulate real scenarios

Real-world branching scenarios and simulations allow employees to test their knowledge in a safe space that feels realistic. For learning to be accepted, it must be applied in practice. An online training simulation allows mistakes to occur in a non-negative manner and helps to consolidate online training.

4. Social learning

The employee could feel isolated, which can lead to performance issues. Use social media platforms to connect them with their peers, find more online training resources, or ask for help. You will also be able to interact and share information with distant colleagues who are more experienced in the field. For example those who have encountered similar performance issues and can tell us how they solved the problem.

5. eLearning feedback

Give employees the opportunity to suggest improvements to online training materials. Recognizing their contributions helps them motivate them and keep them occupied with the topic. They can also uncover gaps in your online training strategy that can lead to employee performance issues. For example, online training courses that cause cognitive overload instead of helping employees identify critical skills gaps.

6. Celebrate successes

Use progress tracking and personalized course cards to monitor the completion of online training assessments and tests. Allow employees to keep track of where they are in terms of goal achievement and give them a sense of achievement. They can also use gamification to incentivize and recognize their efforts. It’s not just about pointing out personal pain points, it’s about acknowledging how far they have come. As well as the efforts they have made to improve their skills and productivity in the workplace.


When we instruct our employees to complete or retake online training, we are not addressing the root cause of employee performance issues. Did they really lack the right skills for the job? Or maybe they worked long hours but still fell behind? None of us work in isolation. We all carry stresses from home with us, such as caring for family members, financial pressures, or relationship problems. There are many difficulties in the workplace, such as challenging team dynamics, lack of recognition, or lack of promotion. Any of these issues can lead to poor employee performance and should be addressed before any online training improvement is initiated. eLearning can and will improve skills if carefully designed and used effectively. Take the time to look at the whole person before making assumptions about what is causing an employee’s performance problem.

If you are determined to use online training to solve potential employee performance issues, you will be interested in finding useful information about gamification, its uses, and the impact it has on reshaping learning. Download our eBook Beyond Badges: How To Use A Gamification LMS to Retain Your Top Talent and Increase ROI in order to find the best system for your employee development strategy.


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