Bringing Us Together: Impacts of Learning Cohorts in Technician Onboarding (2023)

By Abbie E. O’Dell, Charter Communications

The COVID-19 pandemic drastically shifted the landscape of work, transforming how and where employees performed their daily activities. Remote work caused many employees to report feeling a sense of isolation, and organizations have sought to proactively create a sense of community by using technologies such as group chats and video meetings to recreate traditional workplace social interactions. The adult learning experience also changed, with some organizations embracing online learning activities to replace the traditional classroom. Post-pandemic, traditional classroom-based learning has re-emerged, yet training organizations may realize benefits of continuing to use techniques and technologies employed to connect learners during remote work. This mixed method study investigated the experience of learners who were provided a structured cohort chat group (CCG) during their onboarding program and evaluated learners’ self-reported satisfaction using this learning method. The study also explored these learners’ overall performance and attrition rate compared against a control group of learners who were not provided access to a CCG. The findings indicate a positive relationship between the presence of a CCG and learner performance, attrition rate and overall perception of their onboarding program, suggesting potential for further inquiry into use of this method.

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