The Pros and Cons of eLearning for Employees

Numerous companies are using eLearning to teach and educate their personnel in today’s fast-paced environment. E-learning has various benefits, including ease, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness.

Yes, you can train in different ways: in a large classroom among like-minded people, individually with a tutor, remotely (eLearning), or even independently. Among the listed ways of acquiring knowledge, eLearning has a lot of advantages and is an excellent alternative to classic lessons. However, it also has its own aspects that can jeopardize the success of the whole idea.

In this article, we will tell you what problems may be faced by companies that chose this method of learning and how to overcome them.

Pros of eLearning for Employees

Convenience and Flexibility

The simplicity and flexibility of eLearning are two of its key benefits. You can access curriculum and materials at any time and from any location as long as they have an adequate Internet connection. This allows employees to fit training into their hectic schedules and eliminates the need to attend a real classroom. Students may take courses at their own pace, allowing them to focus on areas where they need more assistance or jump through to topics they are already familiar with.


Distant training of staff is typically less expensive than traditional classroom training. Businesses that train their employees online can save money on classroom rental, instructor costs, and travel expenditures. Furthermore, because online courses may be used several times, they don’t have to be recreated from the start each time a new employee wants to learn something new.

Better Learning Retention

eLearning has been found in studies to improve learning retention over traditional classroom-based education. This is because interactive components in online courses often include:

  • Educational videos;
  • Quizzes;
  • Polls;
  • Simulations, etc.

Such elements help attract students’ attention and keep them engaged. Furthermore, employees can go over the content as many times as they need to in order to properly comprehend it.

Personalized Learning Experience

Another advantage of eLearning is that it can be tailored to individual learners’ requirements. Learners can focus on subjects related to their employment positions or skill levels, making the training more interesting and relevant. Moreover, eLearning courses may be tailored to different learning types, such as visual or auditory learners.

Cons of eLearning for Employees

Lack of Personal Interaction, Low Motivation, and Accountability

One of the problems that cannot be solved with modern technical equipment is the lack of motivation of students. If they do not understand the purpose of learning and the benefits it can provide, then dire consequences cannot be avoided. As a result, the employee may be demoted or even dismissed.

Not everyone has the willpower to be motivated to learn. Often, the choice of profession is made by students unconsciously, and the lack of practical skills prevents the desire to get to work as soon as possible. This is especially true in the early training stages when employees are not yet settled into the job and accustomed to the rules of the company. They simply do not realize the degree of importance of self-discipline.

Proper motivation and self-discipline will be the key to successful eLearning and open access to plenty of opportunities for future career advancement.

Moreover, one of the major drawbacks of eLearning is the lack of personal connection. Employees may feel alienated or detached from the learning experience if they do not have a face-to-face connection with trainers or co-workers. Furthermore, students may have questions or concerns that the course does not address, which can lead to frustration and misunderstanding.

When opposed to traditional classroom-based training, there is sometimes a lack of accountability with eLearning. If there is no manager or other co-workers to keep them accountable, employees may be less driven to complete the course or may not take the training as thoroughly as they would in a typical classroom environment.

Technical Difficulties

Another possible disadvantage of eLearning is technological challenges. Employees’ ability to complete the course may be hindered if they do not have access to a dependable Internet connection or if the online platform is hard to use. Furthermore, if the program requires specialized software or hardware, employees may require further training to efficiently utilize these tools.

Even with a decent Internet connection, it’s not always possible to avoid problems of a technical nature. Online learning systems in most companies can not instantly solve the problem of communication with a large number of employees over the network.

Moreover, often distance learning is conducted for several hundred employees simultaneously. In such situations, it’s rarely possible to avoid issues when some of them do not have access to this or that file or image or cannot clearly hear what the manager says.

Switching all employees to distant training means an impressive financial outlay for the company. In addition to technically equipping all responsible managers and students with the necessary devices and software tools, training of specialist staff is also required. Such experts will assist in the prompt elimination of problems in the learning process related to technical failures and malfunctions.

To solve this problem, you can resort to proven tools that are popular around the world. The model of successful online schools and courses can be taken as an example. They use solutions such as:

  • Zoom, Webex Meetings, GoToMeeting, or RemotePC Meeting video conferencing apps that give each participant the ability to ask questions and see their interlocutor(s);
  • Collaborative document tools such as Google Docs or ClickUp;
  • Content creation platforms that are designed for independent work.

Limited Interaction with Colleagues

Lastly, eLearning can reduce engagement with co-workers. Employees have the opportunity to network and create relationships with their colleagues through traditional classroom-based training. This may be beneficial for team development and creating a feeling of community inside the company. Employees that use eLearning may lose out on this chance.

The lack of lively communication can also affect the learning process. This problem is associated with the deterioration of the psycho-emotional state of employees and their ability to adapt to the new environment. In the transition to distance learning, students are faced with new responsibilities.

When studying in a team, workers tend to compare their successes with the achievements of other members. This is often the catalyst for motivation to achieve academic results. It’s not about competing but about pumping up skills for speaking at conferences, etc.

All of this allows you to measure your success, but the virtual learning process deprives you of this opportunity. The lack of comparison with others and indicators of growth sometimes hinders further development.

The way out will be an objective assessment of your own progress without looking back at others. If feedback is important to you, you can ask your manager for it and listen to significant criticism from your colleagues in a general chat room.


The advantages and disadvantages of eLearning have already been appreciated by many companies, and despite certain disadvantages of the system, it’s still quite effective. After all, with its help, more and more people are gaining the opportunity to receive a quality education online and go higher in their career ladder.

To summarize, while eLearning provides unquestionable benefits for employees, it also has possible downsides, including:

  • Lack of personal contact;
  • Technological challenges;
  • Restricted responsibility;
  • Limited engagement with colleagues, etc.

When considering whether to implement eLearning for your business, it’s critical to carefully assess all the benefits and downsides against your company’s specific requirements and objectives.

Businesses should explore integrating features of conventional classroom-based training, such as video seminars, online training programs, and interactive group activities, to optimize the benefits of eLearning. This can help overcome the absence of human connection and restricted engagement with co-workers that might occasionally accompany online learning. In order to promote responsibility and motivation, firms might give incentives or awards for completing training courses.

Overall, eLearning may be an efficient approach to training and educating staff, but it’s critical to weigh the benefits and downsides before making your final choice. You may establish a successful eLearning program that helps both your employees and your business by carefully examining your organization’s objectives and applying solutions to overcome possible downsides.