Training occurs at several stages of employment: new-hire onboarding, to eliminate skills gaps, when tools or products change, annual compliance training, preparation for a promotion.

Work-related learning happens all the time, whether collaboratively, via social platforms, or self-directed — in addition to formal training.

Everboarding recognizes that learning is constant and transforms training from a “go-to” or “one-and-done” event to a continuous process.

Learning is ongoing

One-time exposure to information is rarely enough. Spaced repetition is a proven approach to mastery and knowledge retention.

Yet many corporate training programs expose learners to an eLearning course or instructor-led training, once, and that’s it; training is “completed.”

Training might be finished, but learning is just starting.

Close-up of two hands passing a relay baton.

When learners complete their training, they might be able to pass a quiz or regulatory exam that day. But what about next week or in 4 months? And, with a large gap until their next training, how much prep time will they need to recertify next year?

Knowledge retention is the goal, not completing a training course.

Everboarding recognizes that learners need repeated exposure to content to remember and retain the important concepts and facts. It acknowledges that onboarding training might overwhelm new employees with too much information all at once, and it provides a structure to review and reinforce their learning.

In short, everboarding is an approach to corporate training that focuses on knowledge retention.

The specific details of each everboarding strategy are as unique as your organization and learner population.

  • Your approach might use blended learning, combining virtual or in-person instructor-led training with microlearning to build a knowledge retention campaign.
  • It might be all digital, combining eLearning courses with an app that offers Q&A, flashcards, a game, or other mechanisms to review and reinforce learning.
  • You might have an all-microlearning campaign that incorporates teaching with review and self-testing using a variety of interactive activities.

Bring learning and working together

Whatever your approach, the ongoing portion of your everboarding strategy should include moving training, retention, or both into the workflow, by making short learning sessions a part of the daily or weekly routine. That can help with retention because learners will access lessons and activities within the context of their work — they will find and review the information at the moment they need to use it. 

Integrating learning with work also increases engagement, since learners do not have to schedule time to train and interrupt their work processes.

Improve training results and job performance and embrace a continuous learning culture: A move from one-and-done training to everboarding is a win for learners, managers, training admins — and your bottom line.

Now that you have a solid understanding of what everboarding is, it’s time to dive into use cases for everboarding! We cover scenarios where taking an everboarding approach to your online training will help your organization thrive. Head over to our article “How can I use online training to benefit current employees?” (hint, it’s everboarding), and we’ll walk through the use cases together. Alternatively, if you’re looking to continue your journey through our learning hub’s guided introduction to online training, jump back and find the next article that piques your interest.

Poor Use with
Adult Learners
Effective with
Adult Learners


Simple games layered on top of content

Scenario-based games that use the content

Leaderboards, competition

Fan excessive competition among employees or teams by offering large prizes for top performers and/or shaming those with lower scores

Challenge employees to beat their own past performance, or design a leaderboard that shows each employee only the four scorers above and below them

Points, rewards, badges

Award points or levels for completing sections of training or playing for a set number of minutes

Award levels, badges or points for recalling or applying content correctly, demonstrating mastery

  • Remember — bookmark, google, link, search
  • Understand — annotate, Boolean search, journal, tweet
  • Apply — chart, display, execute, present, upload
  • Analyze — attribute, deconstruct, illustrate, mash, mind map
  • Evaluate — comment, editorialize, moderate, network, post
  • Create — blog, film, integrate, podcast, program, publish
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Comparison of the Three Levels of eLearning Content
Off-the-shelf subscription libraries
  • Saves development time - you don’t have to create any courses yourself.
  • Good fit for a limited budget.
  • Quick to set up and launch.
  • Access to hundreds of courses on a wide variety of topics.
  • Users cannot make any changes to the pre-existing content.
  • Users do not own any of the content.
  • An overwhelming amount of courses and a short time in which to complete the training can create a higher likelihood of users experiencing learner fatigue.
  • Learners may view content that isn’t relevant to their learning objectives.
  • Time and resources can be spent curating your content library to suit your learners.
Course customization
  • A premade course that is quick to set up and launch.
  • Customization options such as adding your logo, branding, choice of colors, or some fonts.
  • You do not own the content of the course.
  • You cannot make significant changes to the content of the course (e.g. adding your own images, data, or organization’s terminology).
  • You cannot make significant changes to the content of the course (e.g. adding your own images, data, or organization’s terminology).
Fully custom courses
  • Completely tailored to meet your organization's audience, needs, and strategies.
  • You have limitless creative potential.
  • You own the original content/IP.
  • Prevent learner fatigue through personalization.
  • You can change, personalize, and maintain the courses however you want and at your discretion.
  • More expensive - custom courses are a bigger investment for both time and resources.
  • Learners will not have access to as many course options as quickly as they would through a library subscription.
  • A professional eLearning development team should be assigned to this project - either hired in-house or contracted.
Pamela S. Hogle

An experienced writer, editor, tech writer, and blogger, Pam helps you make sense of learning science and eLearning technology. She provides information you can use to drive improvements in your training effectiveness and ROI.

Read more articles by Pamela S. Hogle