By Keir McDonald MBE

E-learning is becoming increasingly common as a method of workplace-learning around the world. The ability to reach distributed teams and greatly reduce training costs are two of the main benefits of e-learning.

New cloud-based technologies have streamlined corporate training procedures and continue to make customised e-learning options the smart choice for small and medium sized businesses. And with nearly one half of college students today taking at least one course online, there are a large percentage of employees entering the workforce with at least some online training experience.

Furthermore, the accessibility and potential for self-direction offered by e-Learning can be valuable when time and budget constraints impact workplace-learning objectives.

As e-learning tools become more widely available, many businesses are considering transitioning from costly in-person training routines to streamlined e-Learning programs.

If you’re considering investing in an e-learning program, here are some important things to keep in mind and help you make the right decision.

Make Sure Your E-learning Content is On Demand for Employees

A primary objective for businesses moving to e-learning and digital employee training is to make the content as easily accessible to employees as possible.

Seeing that many employees are already using e-learning software in their personal lives, including podcasts, videos, and blogs, they will look to consume training content on their smartphones or mobile devices too. Make it simple and easy for them to do so.
Select e-Learning libraries that will help your employees consume easy-to-absorb modules available around the clock. Look for flexibility and ease of access when evaluating e-learning technologies.

Ensure Your E-learning Supplier Offers Video Training Modules

Learners love watching videos. Video content is much more engaging, more versatile and less impersonal than written training content.

Video can be used to trigger interaction, both individual and group, and can effectively be blended with more reflective materials such as web articles, blogs and PDFs.

Looking back ten to fifteen years ago, video was used by most organisations for training. Companies used to have a library of VHS tapes and a screening room where employees could watch those videos. While the initial transfer from VHS to digital and online training videos wasn’t immediate, thanks to limitations on bandwidth and data access, today technology has caught up and video streaming is here to stay.

Video has come full circle and is a powerful tool when it comes to e-learning.

How Easy is it for Your Team to Collaborate using e-Learning technology?

Using online technologies that enable collaboration and rapid knowledge sharing, even among remote team members, can provide valuable learning opportunities for employees. This fosters engagement and stronger employee relationships.

Small groups of peers at the same level of career maturity create a social environment that motivates adult learners to persist.

Powerful learning takes place via social interaction using a computer or through the internet. This kind of learning is characterised by the sharing and construction of knowledge among participants using technology as their primary means of communication or as a common resource.

Look for e-learning software that enables online group work. Not only is this effective, but it is also a cost effective alternative for more traditional group-based learning.

Can You Monitor Employee Learning Progress at any time?

To measure the effectiveness of your online training, you'll need to track e-learning activity. And of course you want this to be as easy as possible.
Look for a simple dashboard containing e-learning metrics that illustrate how many people have viewed a particular course, what scores learners have earned, any questions that have been raised and more.

In fact, many organisations must track course progress to comply with standards, policies, regulations, or laws. Others track e-learning activity to validate their investment and identify trends that can help with future planning and budgeting.

Consider your organisation's management needs and select an e-learning program that makes it easy to track progress and effectiveness.

Can the e-learning program be customised to meet your needs?

Most e-learning programs can be customised to include your logo and basic company information. If you want to further customise content to more strongly reflect the brand and culture of your organisation, be sure to evaluable how customisable e-learning software can be.

Consider language options, notification settings and other important features and how they can be changed to suit the way you want the e-learning software to work.

This is great because one e-learning program can be used by many different types of users within your organisation, each with unique preferences. The objective is to create an e-learning experience that feels completely authentic to your stakeholders and learners, like it was created just for them.

Look for a great design experience that is completely tailored to your requirements to support achieving the results you care about most.