How Online Learning Can Translate Into Future Job Skills
Online learning and remote work have both come into the spotlight in recent years. For some, the option to learn and work online is a blessing. For others, it can feel like a hassle.
In all cases, though, attending online classes can unlock some unique soft and hard skills that can play a critical role in your professional future.
The Meteoric Rise of Online Learning and Remote Work
From day one, online education has had a certain allure for many students. Even in its infancy, the ability to take classes online was seen as something that:
- Was easily accessible
- Provided greater flexibility
- Enabled professionals to continue their education
- Was often more affordable
Over time, virtual learning has continued to develop. Advancing tech has made it easier to run online classes, and a solid student track record has made online education more acceptable to mainstream academics and professionals.
While virtual learning has been on the rise for over a decade, remote work has been keeping pace as well. As technology has made communication and collaboration easier, professionals have increasingly worked from home. As time has passed, it’s been seen that working from home can yield many advantages, such as:
- Increasing productivity and decreasing missed days
- Improving loyalty
- Reducing stress
- Lowering costs for employers and employees alike
- Improving accessibility and workforce diversity
Of course, both remote work and e-learning received a massive boost during the coronavirus pandemic. In many cases, they served as exclusive lifelines to continuing educational and professional pursuits.
As the pandemic has receded into the background and a certain degree of normalcy has returned, it has opened up discussions about the long-term benefits of online interactions in schools and workspaces.
One common benefit pointed to is how online learning helps prepare students for their future jobs.
Virtual School Skills That Translate Into the Workplace
It doesn’t matter if you end up working a remote, in-person, or hybrid job. There are certain skills that you can learn in online school settings that are equipping them to thrive in the workplaces of the future.
Here are a handful of the best soft and hard skills that can easily translate into professional success.
- Independence and personal drive: Remote school puts a lot of responsibility on the student to show up for class, make the best of a remote connection, and ensure that they’re keeping up with everything that’s expected of them.
- Comfort with tech: From virtual textbooks to video conferencing software, e-learning hones a student’s ability to use the latest tech to stay plugged in and remain part of the conversation.
- Organization: Online learning is complex and requires an individual to remain organized in their at-home learning spaces, with their school schedules, and even on their electronic devices.
- Time management: Virtual learners must learn to balance their personal and academic lives. This includes managing their time so that they can get everything done and still keep their personal schedules intact.
- Flexibility and adaptability: Online school is famous for being flexible and adaptable. However, it also requires skill to manage a schedule that is scattered and, at times, inconsistent.
- Communication: Communication is a key skill in any workspace, but especially when managing remote teams. It’s crucial for team leaders and team members alike. Students must also learn to hone this skill if they’re going to keep up with their lectures, classes, and assignments.
This list can go on and on. Countless essential professional skills are enhanced when you’re put in an online learning environment.
How to Market Your Online Learning Skills
Just because a student has developed these skills doesn’t mean it will instantly translate into a competitive advantage in the workplace. The major barrier that stands in the way is, of course, getting hired.
This is where candidates must be ready to sell themselves throughout the recruitment process. A few tips for how to do this include:
- Listing your e-learning developed talents on your resume, both as skills and in more detailed form as specific achievements.
- Highlighting particularly relevant skills in cover letters.
- Learning to comfortably and appropriately discuss your applicable skills and achievements in interview settings.
Getting your skills to stand out while you’re applying for a job is the toughest part. Once you’re on the job, though, the advantages that you’ve developed in the online school sphere will be able to naturally stand out throughout your daily performance.
Embracing the Benefits of E-Learning
Whether you were forced into virtual school due to an event like the pandemic or you chose it willingly as a perfect solution to your need for school, it’s important to keep the advantages of your online education in mind.
Make sure to identify the skills that you’ve developed, particularly thanks to attending classes online. Then deliberately sprinkle them throughout your job hunting toolkit so that you can showcase your modern, cutting-edge talents to prospective employers.
If you can do that, you’ll be making the best of your education. This won’t just be through what you’ve learned or your degree, but from the skills, you developed while attending the school itself.