Remote Training Guidelines: Proven Tips to Make Your Online Training a Success

Remote Training Guidelines: Proven Tips to Make Your Online Training a Success
Imed Bouchrika, Phd by Imed Bouchrika, Phd
Chief Data Scientist & Head of Content

The COVID-19 pandemic drove as many as 30% of global employees to work remotely. The abrupt change in working arrangements forced organizations to train their workers in earnest for the new setup.

How organizations successfully navigated the transition speaks of the capability of management, employees, and technology to handle economic stressors, such as a pandemic. To be sure, many organizations would choose not to be caught unprepared again for such a test. For that, they would need to implement best practices for training remote employees.

In this article, we’ve prepared the guidelines to make this possible. We’ve also thrown in the basics on remote training, the best practices for working remotely course you can find, and painted the current background on remote work training to help you add context to your training.

Remote Training Guidelines Table of Contents

  1. Tips to Make Your Remote Training a Success
  2. Remote Training: Develop a Session Plan
  3. Invest in the Right Remote Training Tools
  4. Remote Training Basics
  5. A Background on Remote Work

Tips to Make Your Remote Training a Success

How to train remote employees? To ensure success, note the best practices for remote training below.

Flesh out the specific details.

Training remote workers could be with superiors who wish to introduce a new project. Some projects fail right off the conception and translation stage. To deliver effective training, you have to understand your material (project) and the ways it could be managed and handled. You don’t want to face your remote team with incomplete details about a new project.

Break sessions for effectivity.

If the project is too large for a single session, break the online training guidelines into manageable modules and schedule each part accordingly. Training can easily fail from trying to achieve so much in so little time. With the deluge of information, employees can easily forget the details.

Ensure that participants have no urgent tasks at hand.

You may have all your remote worker training preparations and materials in order, but you can overlook the state of mind of your participants. Make sure to clear the current tasks of participating team members. This is important so their minds are not elsewhere when you conduct your training.

Provide the topics and resources in advance.

Post the topics and resources in advance so the participants are ready during the meeting. These could be a brief about the new project, objectives, the tools required, and means to acquire them. For example, you might need a subscription to a new application.

Getting their account credentials in advance would be the apt thing to do in such a situation.

Determine if your current method of delivery is adequate or a new one is warranted.

You might be used to presentation-supported, unidirectional, face-to-face training and see no reason to depart from the method once you migrate to remote training. However, you might want to consider a more participatory approach when you have a complex topic at hand. Entertaining questions and engaged discussions along the training ensures that the participants do not go about with the new task or project with unresolved questions in their minds.

Support your remote training with a knowledge base or online courses.

You can post your tips for working remotely course where remote workers can simply revisit them if the need arises. Workers may be working on several projects down the road and once they go back to a past project, chances are they need a refresher.

You can also find the best practices for working remotely online course everywhere, as well as webinars that serve the same function, but you have to keep your subscription current.

Encourage feedback.

Feedback is the lifeblood of remote training, giving you the resource to enhance your training sessions, either from improving clarity, adding resources, or expounding existing sections further. Organizations and leaders cannot hope to progress much without listening to the views of their employees. It affects productivity as much as enthusiasm for training.

Track your training.

Tracking the results of your tips for working remotely online course gives you the insight to review your training models, materials, and delivery methods based on how the employees gained from the previous training. With this knowledge, you can pursue ways to improve your succeeding training sessions.

remote training is a success

Remote Training: Develop a Session Plan

As a trainer, you will most likely lead the online tips for working remotely course throughout the year. To render remote training methods a success, you may want to use a standard training template that you simply adjust for each session. Using a template, you can organize topics and materials consistently without repeating them.

Once you have a working session template, you can proceed to deliver training remotely following these steps:

  1. Determine your learning objectives. Identify what you want your trainees to learn and the means to measure it.
    Tip: Keep your learning objectives to a minimum, ideally at a maximum of two. Chasing after too many can stretch your session and overwhelm your participants.
  2. Identify complex topics and clear up in advance.
    Tip: Organize around key topics and expand to related ones.
  3. Draft an outline based on the previous efforts. Make sure to include all the points you need to present and in the order you want it presented.
    Tip: Place your outline materials into the training plan template. Check that the template with the outline lives up to your session objectives.
  4. Plan your presentation techniques. You could opt for live online presentation, pre-recorded videos, Q&A sessions, advanced softcopy handouts, and the like.
    Tip:  Decide between synchronous and asynchronous learning. For the former, you will need to schedule a time ideal for all the trainees. For the latter, a recorded video or handbook/manual material makes more sense.

Invest in the Right Remote Training Tools

A key component of any remote training guideline is a set of remote training software tools to facilitate your sessions smoothly. Essentially, these should include the following:

  1. Project management and collaboration tools. These tools allow for a centralized hub to store all the files required for your remote training project, from documents, images, and videos. As cloud applications, they allow for training remote employees from virtually any place on the planet where internet is available.
  2. Communication tools. These could be video-conferencing applications or web conferencing software solutions.
  3. Learning Management Systems. LMS typically feature a course content building module, training resource allocation, gamification elements, and performance tracking—functionalities that would help you create a standout remote training session anytime.

Source: The State of Learning and Development 2020

Remote Training Basics

What is remote training?

Remote training is an official work instruction arrangement conducted digitally via web conference software or similar technology.

In remote training, the trainer/instructor and the learner are generally understood to be physically located apart and outside of their company premises, although it can also happen in a company setting, albeit from different company locations. The latter is best understood when a company has several local, national, or international offices.

Currently, remote training is understood in the context of remote work, which shot up to 74% share of the workforce in December 2020 (Statista, 2021), with 35% expecting to remain working permanently thereafter. Owing to the pandemic, which forced businesses to rethink their workforce setup, including training policies. These businesses include those that were not inclined to conduct their operations through work from home arrangements before the pandemic.

Tellingly, remote work has been a success for both employers and employees, with a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) study presenting the success rate at 83% and 71%, respectively. The result is that more businesses are now looking to extend this arrangement, with remote training serving as a crucial factor (PwC, 2021).

Source: PwC, 2021

In dealing with remote work, one must be ready to deal with a number of terminologies. The score could include work from home, telecommuting, mobile work, and telework.

Is remote training the same as virtual training?

Not necessarily. Remote training can be virtual training and vice versa. However, virtual training can also be done in person. This is the case when training uses a piece of technology to teach an employee about how a job is done or to do it better. In technical repairs, for example, trainees can interface with virtual technology to go about the intricate details of repair work. This can be done remotely (even while on the job) or in-house as part of simple training.

Who are involved in remote training?

The people involved in remote training are remote team managers and remote workers. With 21% of remote teams likely to work five days per week remotely, organizations forego training at their peril.

Previously, remote training was part of the overall Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) organizational strategy. In this context, remote training is viewed as a necessary piece of an organization’s plan to future-proof its operations (Rutgers, 2021).

It still holds, but the urgency of the COVID-19 pandemic made it a critical factor for the survival of organizations. While organizations had the leeway to pace their remote training at their own leisure, the pandemic made sure they thrust it into the fast lane under threat of dissolution.

Remote training is more critical for workers who had minimal if at all, exposure to the work setup. Thus, they require more hours in training to familiarize themselves with the technologies involved, the work and communication expected of them and ensure that they deliver.

Team managers who led remote teams before the pandemic may be the most fortunate of the workforce who had to deal with the enforced remote work arrangements. In organizations where such setup is absent or negligible, team managers found themselves in the same boat as the teams they have to manage.

As it is, managing remote teams is a new ballgame entirely. It is easy to get lost in the intricacies of people and processes that vie for attention. The pandemic taught the workforce and managers priceless lessons. For managers, the experience gave them the stage to navigate remote management issues that could come their way.

How do you know if your organization needs remote training?

If your company currently engages remote workers, is looking to hire more remote workers or transition to remote work, and needs to improve on remote worker performance, your organization needs remote training. You need to retain a remote training expert to oversee current and incoming remote workers for your remote teams to function smoothly.

Why does your organization need remote training?

The success of remote work hinges on how well remote teams go about their duties. Crucial to achieving this is effective remote training. There are several reasons underlying the need to train your remote employees. Among these are:

  1. You are introducing a new project that calls for new tasks, processes, team members, novel resources, and a new set of applications.
  2. You have new hires who are new to your organization’s processes.
  3. With the previous scenario, having the support of a knowledge base would make the training easier.
  4. You need to impart new skills and fine-tune existing ones.
  5. You are introducing a new application/software.
  6. You are updating processes, and team responsibilities.

A Background on Remote Work

The Reality of Remote Work

The onset of the pandemic brought death, forced confinement, limited travel, social distancing, and constricted organizations in many ways. To their credit, organizations managed a way out of the dire situation. But largely, the world is looking at a virtually changed business landscape as the aftermath of the pandemic.

Source: Statista, 2021

The Benefits of Remote Work

A capable digital technology and the willingness of organizations and their employees to embrace remote work are key to this transition. Several statistics serve notice to this fact.

For one, there’s the share of global employees finding themselves working remotely—30% as mentioned earlier. To support this transition, cloud services saw their revenues expand to $128.5 billion. Web conferencing and collaboration solutions like Microsoft Teams rose to the occasion and increased its share to 145 million daily users. At the end of the day, the uptick in remote services helped remote work contribute as much as $700 billion in annual savings to the U.S. economy alone (Statista, 2021).

New converts to remote work find themselves discovering its benefits that established practitioners know so well:

  1. It is not a threat to productivity; in many instances, remote workers are more productive than in-office workers.
  2. Remote workers are more willing to work beyond their regular hours.
  3. It allows for work flexibility.
  4. It makes for happier employees as they save on commute and work-related expenses.
  5. It affords employees the convenience of working at home or anywhere.
  6. Employees appreciate the opportunity to spend more time with their families.

businesses rode remote work to success

Remote Work Challenges

However, remote work is not all rainbows. For one, it has contributed the term “Zoom fatigue” to the English language, documenting the annoyance of remote workers with endless virtual meetings and get-together events. There are more:

  1. Loneliness – Coming from familiar interaction with coworkers at the office, some remote workers find the new situation less than an ideal replacement for the faces and office talks they left behind.
  2. Difficulty balancing private and professional duties.
  3. Home distractions from having to navigate others’ spaces as well.
  4. Technical difficulties in collaboration and communication.
  5. Coping with different time zones.
  6. Difficulty unplugging.

Zoom fatigue - men vs. women

In the study, “Set Up Remote Workers to Thrive,” published in the MIT Sloan Management Review, Jay Mulki, Felicia G. Lassk, Fleura Bardhi, and Jayne Nanavaty-Dahl (2009) pointed out the most pressing challenges of remote work that employers could help address, thus: “[Four] critical challenges involving remote work require management attention: (1) finding the right work-life balance, (2) overcoming workplace isolation, (3) compensating for the lack of face-to-face communication, and (4) compensating for the lack of visibility. For each of these issues, we offer a set of management coping strategies drawn from our interviews with managers and remote workers. By making the effort to understand employee challenges, managers can apply these strategies to their advantage. However, even with supportive efforts by management, not everyone can be successful working in remote arrangements. As such, managers should hire confident, communicative, independent workers who will be able to operate in challenging work environments.”

Source: NovoEd, 2021

Adaptability and Flexibility: The Keys to Remote Training Success

Remote work and remote training go hand in hand as these remote training guidelines show. As both have established record successes in practice, adaptors can get complacent and think they have everything fixed and under control. It’s a dangerous presumption, one that organizations better not fall into. As indicated, remote work (and remote training, by direct association) succeeded on three legs: employers, employees, and technology. Remote training cannot function well when either one of its support systems does not do its job.

Thus, trainers have to keep a keen eye on the moving parts of their support system. They need to constantly keep tabs on crucial developments in leadership, organizational goals, the remote workers they work with, and any emerging technologies that could contribute to better current training tools and practices. Virtual and augmented reality technologies, for example, have long been touted for their great promise in revolutionizing learning environments. The quick-fix demands of the pandemic somehow pushed them to the backburner, but trainers need to reexamine their potential as businesses step on the threshold of normalcy.

Along with AR and VR, videos have made tremendous inroads in the field of training. They make for persuasive learning tools and trainers will do well to get a good understanding of how they can help improve remote training sessions.

Finally, encouraging teams along the course of virtual team building activities might just prep them up for your training sessions.


  1. Declan, F. (2021, November 5). Remote learning: How remote work made corporate learning work better. NovoEd.
  2. Fauville, G., Luo, M., Queiroz, A. C., Bailenson, J. N., & Hancock, J. (n.d.). Nonverbal mechanisms predict Zoom fatigue and explain why women experience higher levels than men by Geraldine Fauville, Mufan Luo, Anna Carolina Muller Queiroz, Jeremy N. Bailenson, Jeff Hancock. SSRN.
  3. The future of work and Covid-19: An unprecedented opportunity for corporate social innovation. (2020, November). Rutgers Business School.
  4. Kniffin, K. M., Narayanan, J., & Van Vugt, M. (2020). COVID-19 and the workplace: Implications, issues, and insights for future research and action. Harvard Business School.
  5. Mlitz, K. (2021, March 20). State of telework COVID worldwide 2021. Statista.
  6. Mlitz, K. (2021, March 30). Work from home & remote work. Statista.
  7. Mulki, J., Bardhi, F., Lassk, F., & Nanavaty-Dahl, J. (2009, October 1). Set up remote workers to thrive. MIT Sloan Management Review.
  8. Nield, D. (2021, April 18). ‘Zoom fatigue’ may finally have an explanation, and it’s affecting women more. ScienceAlert.
  9. PricewaterhouseCoopers. (2021, January 12). Business needs a tighter strategy for remote work. PwC.

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