The Benefits of Attending HR Webinars Beyond Recertification
Recertification credits are a fact of life for HR professionals. In the pre-pandemic times, these credits could be obtained at in-person courses or seminars. But webinars are now the order of the day – and that can present some challenges if you’re not accustomed to this kind of online learning. Without the chance to meet and network with fellow HR colleagues, visit booths full of professional insights and tools, and grab some swag, HR webinars can feel like a pale replacement.
With the right mindset and some practical tips, however, webinars can also provide plenty of opportunities and benefits.
Keeping Up to Date
Staying updated on the latest HR technologies, legal topics, and best practices has certainly been a challenge as conferences and courses were canceled due to the pandemic. But webinars make it easy to keep up, with a plethora of options for training on technology and more at your fingertips. SHRM has an extensive library of on-demand webcasts you can check out for a start.
Plus, keeping in touch with new connections you meet at HR webinars is easy with all the virtual communications tools available. Whether you’re scheduling a Zoom coffee catch-up, connecting on LinkedIn, or swapping interesting articles on Slack, building relationships and finding new friends at work is simple.
Attending multiple conferences and seminars per year in-person just wasn’t feasible for many HR professionals a few years ago – most needed to pick and choose carefully. But now that you can attend nearly any webinar from the comfort of your home or office, the barriers to entry are much lower.
Plus, since HR webinars are not limited by the number of people who can physically fit into a room or the travel budget of an organization, more professionals can attend. Parents and caregivers don’t need to arrange a week’s worth of child or elder care as they would for an in-person conference, nor do lower-level employees need to battle for a share of an organization’s development budget for hotels and flights. This makes the information shared in these webinars more available to all who are interested, and thus more equitable.
How to Make the Most of HR Webinars
Getting the maximum benefit out of attending HR webinars begins with a few key tips.
- Pick the right format. Webinars come in all different sizes and formats, so choose the ones that work best for your learning style where possible. If you know you have trouble staying focused during long lectures, look for webinars that are less than one hour or allow for active breakout sessions.
- Pace yourself. In a world where many or most are still working remotely, sometimes adding more screen time to your plate is not an optimal plan for success. Be realistic about how much you can handle at one time, and don’t overfill your schedule with too much online learning.
- Ask questions. Staying engaged is easier when you’re interacting, so don’t be afraid to ask questions via the preferred format in the webinar. Plus, webinars can offer you access to the top experts in the HR field so take advantage of those opportunities to get additional insights.
- Network the right way. While you won’t be sharing a physical room, you will often have smaller discussions in HR webinars and find yourself talking to someone you share an interest with. Make sure to note their name and send them a message on LinkedIn to connect later – it’s networking the virtual way.