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Employee Training Videos: Tips & FAQs

/ Andrea Hattox

Smiling woman with headset on, speaking into laptop for employee training video.

In decades past, just having employee training videos was enough to put any company ahead of the curve. Gone were the all-hands seminars and lengthy in-person training sessions; video content was fresh, new, and far more efficient.

But today, video is the baseline.

Modern jobseekers are accustomed to video-based training—and not just any videos, either. As work environments speed up and call for ever more specialized skill sets, your employees expect (and deserve!) high-quality and engaging video training.

Don’t know where to start? This article covers what you need to know to plan, produce, and edit the most effective training videos for employees. Let’s jump right in.

What is an employee training video?

Like this example, employee training videos often focus on workplace safety, satisfaction, or efficacy. Via St. Luke’s Health System.

Employee training videos are exactly what they sound like: video-based content to train employees. Of course, there’s a lot of nuance hidden in that simple definition.

Employee training videos can be short or long, humorous or serious, professionally shot or taken via smartphone, packaged into an onboarding seminar or offered as continuing education. Videos can be used across massive multinationals, within single-location businesses, or even by solopreneurs looking to train a remote VA.

There are just as many different styles of training videos, too. They can be a slideshow presentation with voiceover, a traditional front-of-the-classroom lecture, an animated explainer video, or even an informally taped conversation between colleagues. And of course, it can all be self-paced or instructor-led.

Such boundless opportunity explains why the corporate e-learning industry is projected to reach over $37 billion by 2026, growing at an impressive rate of 11% year over year.

For your business specifically, this means that the sky’s the limit when it comes to producing training videos!

What are some common types of employee training videos?

Workplace safety is one of the most common corporate training topics. Via NibbiBrothers.

Employee training videos range the full spectrum. If it’s something an employee would want or need to know on the job, you can absolutely create a video for it.

Some of the most common types of employee training videos include:

  • New hire orientation
  • Department onboarding
  • Technical training 
  • Product/tool training
  • Sales training
  • Safety training
  • Anti-discrimination training
  • Diversity training
  • Social media etiquette training
  • Soft skills training (e.g. communication or conflict resolution)
  • Any legally mandated training

In addition to the traditional uses above, our modern world of remote work introduces even more need for high-quality employee training videos. Things that would otherwise be picked up “on the job” often need to be systematically taught—including topics like general workflows, standard office procedures, or even company culture.

Benefits of producing training videos

Video is especially helpful for documenting lengthy processes like an oil change. Via Milton Martin Toyota.

What are the benefits of producing training videos for your employees, you might be wondering? Unsurprisingly, there are many. By packaging your training into a video format, you can:

  • Ensure consistency in quality across locations and time
  • Avoid the hassle and expense of in-person training sessions
  • Allow employees to rewatch training on their own time
  • Easily reach a regionally or even globally distributed workforce

Another surprising benefit can save your business significant cash.

Studies from LinkedIn have found that “94% of employees say they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career development.” That means that by providing genuinely meaningful training, you can actually retain employees longer—preventing the drain of employee turnover, which costs U.S. businesses over $1 trillion per year. Not a bad ROI for video training!

What makes good training videos for employees?

Not all training videos should be humorous, but when done well, they stand out. Via Mimecast.

When it comes to evaluating the quality of employee training videos, there are two sides of the equation to keep in mind: your employees and your administrative team. Balance these two sides well, and you’ll end up with the best possible training videos for everyone.

For your employees

The first aspect is, of course, the employees themselves. Are the videos helpful and easy for new staff members to understand? Are they reasonably accessible to everyone on your team?

From the perspective of your employees, a good training video is one that is:

  • Relevant to their specific job duties
  • Bite-sized and focused on a very specific topic, question, or task
  • Spoken in plain language without any confusing jargon
  • Designed with visual and audio cues to draw attention to key points
  • Memorable in some way (whether through audio, visuals, humor, or some other creative aspect)

Remember that training videos are most often created for someone who’s new to your company or new to a specific role. By adopting a kind, coach-like demeanor, you’ll make the viewer feel more comfortable and more receptive to your training.

For your administrative team

The second aspect is more commonly overlooked, but it’s equally important in terms of answering the question, “What makes a good employee training video?” It’s the administrative side of things.

From this perspective, a good training video is one that is:

  • Polished and professional
  • Affordable to produce
  • On brand, both in terms of visuals and messaging
  • Easy to reuse in different scenarios and for different teams
  • Easy to update as policies and procedures change over time

If you’re looking for a tool that balances the needs of your employees and your admin team, WeVideo stands out. All videos are saved to the cloud and can be easily edited at any time. Business users can also save custom brand kits and host multiple seats in the same account—making it easy for any team member in your training or HR department to update any video, any time.

What should you include in an employee training video?

This training video starts with clear learning objectives. Via Chick-fil-A Training.

While every employee training video will be slightly different depending on the topic and the company, the best videos often share some key components:

  1. Learning objectives: Start by quickly explaining what the viewer will learn from watching this video.
  2. Explanation of why: To gain some buy-in from viewers, explain why this task, procedure, or requirement matters.
  3. Demonstration: If this video is covering a discrete skill or process, show someone completing the task at hand, preferably a couple of times in different ways.
  4. Bite-sized tips: If this video is covering a soft skill, organize information into simple, easily remembered tips. This email etiquette video is an incredible example.
  5. Alternatives: What happens if this exact training procedure won’t work for some reason? Explain what should be done or how to solve it. 
  6. Visual cues: Signals like on-screen text and arrows can help viewers retain information better.
  7. Summary: At the very end, include one or two sentences summarizing the content and explaining next steps, if any.

The major takeaway is this: your training video should include enough narrative and visual elements to clearly explain the topic—and no more! Aim for short, tightly focused videos with minimal extraneous information.

In terms of actual length, conventional wisdom says to keep each video under 6 minutes, though Training Mag has found that longer videos work, too, as long as the content is relevant and helpful.

How to make an employee training video in WeVideo

Back when corporate video training was a brand-new concept, it was expensive and time-consuming to produce. But times have changed!

To make an employee training video today, you don’t need fancy equipment, expensive software, or a dedicated video marketing team. Simply shoot your footage on any modern smartphone (or record your screen for a webinar-style training video) and then edit it in WeVideo.

Even with no video editing experience, you can:

  • Split, trim, and merge clips for a seamless flow
  • Add motion titles or static text overlays
  • Enhance your script with stock photos, audio clips, and sound effects
  • Insert animated transitions to divide your video into bite-sized chunks
  • Add visual callouts to draw attention to key points
  • Edit out audio mistakes and/or add voiceover narration

Best of all, you can do all this after starting from a professionally designed template to save you time. Business users can also take advantage of shared projects, custom brand kits, green screen, and unlimited high-res videos.

Now you know how to make an employee training video and have easy-to-customize templates to get you started. All that’s left is to make them! By incorporating video strategically, you’ll be on the path to more skilled and satisfied employees, which in turn unlocks limitless potential for your company.