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Learn how to create instructional videos with TechSmith — free

With some commentators suggesting staff can’t learn from others when working from home, it could be a good time for employers to develop e-learning programmes to support skill development.

With that in mind, screen recording and capture specialist TechSmith has come to the rescue of producers with instructional videos on topics from the basics of storyboarding, scripting and graphics, right up to how to measure and analyse video performance.

Lee Rodrigues, an instructional designer at SunRun, gives beginners some practical tips for successful videos in TechSmith’s Visual Lounge.

When you’re planning your content for maximum impact, it pays to be well prepared, with plans and, for larger projects such as a series of videos, even a prototype incorporating good scripting and storytelling practices that drive engagement.

“I always start with a script, get it clear, get it clean, and I use a tool to get reviews and feedback. But it all comes back to before you make a recipe. It helps to make sure you have all the ingredients for that recipe, so you are ready to make it,” Rodrigues explains.

Think about, too, whether the video is workflow-based or meant to transfer knowledge. A list of instructions may require a different format or style, Rodrigues suggests.

Have a strategy for your video structure

For workflow instructionals, Rodrigues uses a design approach known as the Five Moments of Need, following the performance objectives required.

“If there’s a task they need to perform, how do we measure if it’s done effectively, is that based on how many trouble tickets are open with support? If we can find a way to hang a measurement on that, that becomes a performance objective,” Rodrigues says.

“And if you have those nailed down, you’ve basically just created 50% of the outline that you may need for the video you’re going to move to next.”

Rodrigues also uses the Successive Approximation Model (SAM) model, an agile approach to learning and development to fine-tune the focus — often using TechSmith’s Camtasia to get a kind of ‘rough draft’ of the video down quickly.

Elizabeth Pierce, senior director of learning experience and consulting at TaskUs, explains how to know if your video is hitting the spot via approaches to measuring video engagement on TechSmith’s Visual Lounge.

Pierce says the simplest way to check that information has been absorbed is to have a quiz at the end of the video. “If you don’t have a quiz or you don’t have a knowledge check, that’s a huge mess.”

TechSmith screen recording and editing tool Camtasia was recently named Employee Training Solution of the Year by RemoteTech Breakthrough, which focuses on innovation in remote-working technologies worldwide.

Bryan Vaughn, managing director of the RemoteTech Breakthrough Awards for 2021, says: “Training employees and teaching new skills can be difficult, especially when many workplaces have transitioned to a fully or partially remote environment.”

Wendy Hamilton, chief executive officer of TechSmith, says the demand for videos has increased significantly over the year, especially in everyday work.

“This makes it all the more important to have tools that enable efficient, uncomplicated video production. With Camtasia, we are meeting the demands with a series of feature updates that streamline the overall workflow for video projects, enable polished results, and provide relief for employees in the changed daily work routine,” Hamilton says.

( Photo by LinkedIn Sales Solutions on Unsplash )

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