How to Make Your Online Training Courses Sticky


Your number one training goal is to ensure that employees engage with training, retain information, and apply them to their jobs.

The journey from training consumption to knowledge application in one go is the ideal outcome.

Not all training outcomes lead to expected results, though.

Some employees might breeze through your training programs, while others find it laborious.

If you want your employees to love your training programs, you must make them sticky.

When training content is sticky, your employees pay more attention to it.

Better attention leads to better knowledge retention and application.

By the end of this article, you will understand six ways to make your online training courses sticky.

1 - Set expectations

Set each online program with a top-level expectation.

For example: 'By the end of this course you should be ready to solve queries related to gift wrap requests.'

Further down, you could break the top-level expectation and set micro-expectations under each learning module.

For example: 'Module 3 - By the end of this module, you should reduce your AHT* in educating customers on placing and reviewing gift wrap requests on the app - with this 2-step process.'

The goal for setting expectations is to tell your employees what they should learn and apply and why they should do so.

What = Knowledge.

Why = Reduce AHT*.

Well defined training expectations make your employees see the training value before learning.

*AHT = Average Handling Time (not sure if we should expand this acronym our audience is familiar with. Let me know.)

2 - Maintain a sense of mystery

Not all training programs need to be an open book, revealing everything to the learner.

You can deliver some aspects of training through stories and scenarios.

Stories and scenarios have protagonists, problems, solutions, and outcomes.

Highlight an issue that compels the protagonist to solve it immediately.

Ask questions like this in your online training courses - How can Mary remember if she has requested her last purchase to be gift wrapped?

Build the training module on this premise and reveal the solution at the end of the course section.

The goal of sprinkling a bit of mystery in your course is to make your employees think 'what happens next'? 'How is it going to end?'


The mystery keeps your employees hooked and motivates them to continue learning.

3 - Tell personal stories

The best way to make your employees care about your training is to introduce ideas/solutions through a personal story.

For example: Begin a course section with a question like this - 'How can Raj (CSR) educate Mary to request for her orders to be gift wrapped on the site/app?'

In this example, your employee becomes the protagonist, who will eventually solve a set of challenges and save the customer.


The goal of telling personal stories is to make your employees the hero and empower them to use your ideas (best practices) to solve customer problems.

4 - Embrace microlearning

One of the reasons why your employees hate lengthy online training programs is because it overwhelms them.

Lengthy online programs inject a sedative to your employees' attention.

Make your training programs shorter and more comfortable to consume, learn, and remember.

Short online courses told through a personal story and sprinkled with some mystery become an instant hit with your employees.

5 - Give control to your employees

Most online training programs struggle to hold employees' attention.

One way to solve this problem is to let your employees choose what they learn.

Not all training programs require you to enroll employees. You should allow your employees to pick and complete courses at a time and pace suitable to them.

What happens when employees choose learning programs themselves?

They are more committed to learn and complete the course.

Instead of pushing courses to your employees, they are pulling courses that matter to them.

Making courses available for self-paced learning makes it easy for employees to refresh their knowledge on topics that need relearning.

6 - Test your employees often

Insert a pop-up quiz at the end of each module that allows your employees to apply what they learned immediately.

Completing assessments require a lot of attention and qualify your employees to progress to the next learning module.

While progressing to the next module is one reward for acing the assessment, follow the evaluation with an encouraging message that says 'Right Answer! You solved this problem like a Pro!'

This boosts your employees' morale and keeps them hooked on the program.

Video games are brilliant at rewarding players for completing each level.

Remember the flag you had to bring down at the end of each level in the Super Mario Bros game?

Image: GIF/image of Mario flag

These six tactics are only as good as your training tech.

It is one thing to have all the tactics, but we need the right tech to implement them and see them bear fruits.

That's why we built Nittio Learn LMS - a tool made for small training teams tasked to create training content for 1000s of employees regularly.

To check if Nittio Learn is ideal for your organization's training demands, visit our - Homepage to learn more.

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