This is the fifth post in a series of “the Realities of Networked Online Learning Communities”. In case you missed them, here they are “Why should we consider Networked Online Learning Communities“, “Concept of Networked Online Learning Communities“, “How do they enhance the effectiveness of learning“, “Few corporate success stories“.
Online Learning Communities can greatly enhance learning effectiveness, through collaborative and social learning tools, but at the same time present their own challenges of implementation.
Let us have a look at the challenges or reasons, why organizations are not adopting this concept.
1. Apprehensions about disruptions and misuse
The social and collaborative component of Online Learning Communities facilitates “meeting” of learners, bringing in the possibility of threats and privacy issues. This is not so as the group community learning is formless, but because it is conducted outside the domain of the formal training infrastructure and without any proper structuring or mentoring.
Organizations are worried about the confidential information and their leakage, consequences of data going out of the company and its impact on their reputation. These communities can also allow competitors to share information, which can also result in legal issues.
These concerns and apprehensions of organizations about Online Learning Communities is the main barrier holding back their use in corporate world.
2. Cultural issues or resistance to change
It is a known fact that the community learning culture works the best only when the organization is ready for it, or only if it has already established a proven system of knowledge-sharing through a formalized process.
Only the organization’s readiness to accept the change can build a culture of trust and transparency, contributing to a knowledge pool that can help in the development of the individual, as well as the organization.
So educating the learners and their supervisors about the usefulness of online community learning is important, to bring certain degree of acceptance and change in organizational culture.
3. Technology Issues
A new focus on information exchange is emerging, leading to different ways of interaction coming up every day, each adding its own individual value. Technology keeps evolving along with how people wish to connect and contribute in learning. There comes a question of investment in technology and what can be expected out of that investment.
And then the technology limitations, some technologies are very easy to use and get a quick acceptance from learners, while some of them will never get the acceptance and some of them cannot be integrated with the technology that the organizations have already invested in. Therefore, organizations may either be successful in adopting the technology or fall behind.
4. Convincing the top management for the funds and approval
Organizations or the top management therein, looks at ROI and in case of a Learning Community; it might be too hard or rather too early, to measure success and show the results. This is an experimental area and can be a flop despite doing everything required. Installing a collaboration tool will not be enough to identify the success rate, as there are many other variables, as discussed above.
So educating the top management, making a case study on the benefits and convincing them to invest in these online communities, is hard work and is time consuming.
5. Requirement for trained moderators involving expenses
There are also some issues like some learners may involve more and show active participation, while others may not. In order to maintain the flow of learning and manage all these activities, organizations require trained moderators specialized in various domains, depending on the groups.
Specialized moderators can be of great help in developing the culture and creation of efficient community of learners. However this is again seen as an expense and throws the challenge of getting the budgets sanctioned.
Collaborative Learning is exciting and productive! But its implementation is challenging. There are some real control issues or barriers in introducing Learning Communities that need to be addressed. What do you say? Do share if you have anything to add.
This is the final post in a series of “the Realities of Networked Online Learning Communities”.
Join us on the Live Webinar to find out more.
Subscribe to Our eLearning Design Blogs
Get CommLab's latest eLearning articles straight to your inbox. Enter your email address below:
As we know, every organization follows a set of rules and regulations. Employees need to be trained on those rules and regulations to have a basic knowledge of their standards toward the organization and customers. And, they have a clear understanding of what they can do and what they cannot. So, organizations may not be at risk when their employees know about their legal duties.
E-learning is a cost-effective and an easy way to train employees, when compared to the traditional methods of teaching. So, most of the organizationsare using eLearning to fulfill their training needs. The healthcare industry makes extensive use of the online training medium.
Training managers put a lot of effort while rolling out an eLearning project, as it involves many complex tasks.
As an eLearning professional, I often work with many training managers and admire their managerial skills. It involves a lot of work like training needs analysis, collecting content, dealing with Subject-matter Experts (SMEs) and developing the course for the stakeholders and learners.
Every organization needs to use their resources well to meet business goals and enhance productivity. As we know, the pharmaceutical sector is highly regulated and non-compliance to applicable laws and regulatory norms could be costly. So, you have to train your employees about rules, regulations, standards and recommended guidelines to avoid mistakes.
In my last blog, we have seen how E-learning, webinars and Mobile apps can be used to impart product training. In this blog, we will look at some more methods.
E-learning is the continuous process of learning through electronic media. Instructional design is a systematic process of learning, and this learning facilitates achievement of the intended goals. Many think that instructional design is all about using technology, but this is not the case.
“A major challenge we face today, therefore, is to create a desire in people to learn; and to foster and facilitate this desire throughout their lives.”
- Bryn Holmes(Author, eLearning Concepts and Practice, 2006)
One of the most important factors for organizations to succeed in today’s competitive landscape is the speedy launch of new products. The time-to-market of new products is critical to survive and succeed. Furthermore, the life cycles of most products are getting shorter due to rapid advances in technology.
On the other hand, if your sales employees are not rightly trained on your products, they will not deliver the right message to your potential prospects making it a competitor’s gain.
We all have a child in ourselves, energetic, fun loving and having zeal to explore and win games. In this state, we learn the best because our emotional state is very positive and retention of learning will be at the peak.
How do we bring out the kid in ourselves, while learning a new skill or acquiring knowledge?
Introducing new processes and software applications can be quite a daunting task. Employees are not receptive to change and teaching all the details and minute steps can be time consuming. Conducting classroom sessions might not be a very beneficial solution. Learners will need to set aside time from their busy schedules, and often, this might not be feasible. The limited number of facilitators will also slow down the learning process. Facilitators will also need to travel extensively to teach learners spread all across the globe. All these arrangements take up considerable efforts, time and financial resources.