The new technology is advantageous as it provides easy access to training. It requires collaboration among areas of training, information technology, and top management. For technology in training to be effective, it needs to be designed with good learning principles.
Transfer of training can be facilitated by using the technology. For example, Electronic performance support systems (EPSS) are computer applications that can provide, as requested skills training, information access, and expert advice. An EPSS may be used to enhance transfer of training by providing trainees with an electronic information source that they can refer to on as-needed basis while they attempt to apply learned capabilities on the jobs.
Imaging refers to scanning documents, storing them electronically, and retrieving them. (Lederer 1993). Imaging is particularly useful as paper files take large volume of space. Moreover, it is difficult to access them. It is easy to access them if they scanned and stored in a database. Software applications make it easy to scan them by using the key search words. Imaging can also be very useful to serve the customers in a better way. Imaging reduces the time to locate a particular file and give the necessary information to customers. It is very useful for Abbott Laboratories given the size and magnitude of the organization.
Interactive Voice Technology makes it possible to generate automated phone responses by using computers. It is very useful to answer the frequently asked questions. Every organization is using Interactive Voice Response System wherever it serves best. It is especially useful to answer the most common doubts of the trainees. Employees can directly enroll into training programs, and if necessary by consulting a human resources consultant.
Distance learning is useful for geographically dispersed companies like Abbott
Labs to provide information about new products, policies, or procedures as well as skills training and expert lectures. The new technologies make the virtual class rooms possible. Distance learning features two way communications between people, and it currently involves two types of technology (Picard 1996).
The first one is Video Conferencing. It makes it possible to exchange audio, video or text between two or more individuals at two or more locations. The second type of distance learning includes individualized, personal computer-based training. Employees can participate in training from anywhere in the world by logging on to the website. They can get their doubts clarified by using e-mail, bulletin boards, and conferencing systems. The major advantage of distance training is that the company can save on travel costs. Raymond Noe remarks:
Distance training allows employees in geographically dispersed sites to receive training from experts who would not otherwise be available to visit each location. (Noe 2008)
However, there are some major disadvantages with the system, says Noe. There is a lack of interaction between the trainer and trainee and technology failures. A high level of interactive feature of training is missing in distance training.
Keeping these limitations in view, it can be used effectively in training the employees. For a company like Abbott which has its presence in more than 130 countries around the world.