It shouldn’t be surprising that many organizations today are implementing eLearning to meet their training needs. Workforce.com states that 73% of training in fortune 500 firms is delivered via eLearning. According to eLearning.com, 77% of American firms are using eLearning. IOMA (2002) reported that organizations can save up to 50% of the cost when they replace classroom training with eLearning.
However, there are still some organizations that are reluctant to adopt eLearning wholeheartedly. I have tried to find out the main factors for such resistance and highlighted some of those which I would like to share with you all.
1. Tried and failed
In organizations that failed to implement eLearning, the failure almost always can be directly attributed to many factors. The most common factors that can be pointed out can be as follows:
- Poorly designed eLearning courseware: One of the major reasons for the unsuccessful implementation of eLearning is poorly designed courses. Such courses face huge dropout rates and this results in your eLearning initiative failing. The first thing that everyone should keep in mind is that eLearning courses are not converted PowerPoint presentations. They should be designed to catch the attention and engage learners in the self-paced environment.
- Lack of encouragement by the management: Management support proves to be vital in the initial phase of eLearning implementation. Employees are more likely to enroll for the courses if they see a highly influential person backing this eLearning initiative or if they see the top management team getting involved in the promotions.
- Learners feel dishonored: In some organizations, employees feel disrespected when they are assigned eLearning courses but honored when they were assigned classroom training. This baseless reason can be a demotivating factor for the employees to adopt eLearning.
- Absence of a dedicated team: eLearning implementation requires a dedicated team to ensure its adaptation and acceptance within an organization. The existing resources in terms of manpower may be already overburdened. Also, eLearning involves both technical and content experts to work simultaneously; and in most organizations, the technical team and content experts have other responsibilities as well, and may not be in a position to devote time exclusively to eLearning. In such cases, the implementation of eLearning may not have the intended results.
- Overestimating what eLearning can do: Organizations should come out of the notion that eLearning is complete replacement of classroom training for all your training needs. Choosing the type of training that can be delivered over online is very important. Otherwise, blending traditional and online learning will be a better choice.
2. Fear of employee adoption
A majority of organizations are held by a fear whether employees will be open to adopt this method of training. Well, the resistance among employees to get trained with the support of technology is understandable. ELearning comes with its share of challenges and it requires a great deal of thought to devise a cohesive strategy that addresses all parts of the challenge. While there is no magic formula, we can overcome most challenges relatively painlessly by adopting a few best practices that successful organizations the world over have used.
3. Technology awareness
All the hardware, software, Internet, bandwidth and LMS are the technology requirements to be met by the organizations. Lack of this technological awareness dampens the enthusiasm of the organizations to adopt eLearning. It’s not a Herculean task to know about it. Select an eLearning vendor who clears all your doubts regarding technological requirements to implement eLearning.
4. Budget constraints
Some organizations are of the notion that it requires huge investment to implement eLearning. To some extent, the answer is yes. The initial investment is higher but on the long-term basis, eLearning is very economical compared to traditional methodology. It’s a proven fact that organizations can save 30% of cost in eLearning when compared to classroom training.
There may be various other reasons for organizations to stay away from eLearning. But a proper analysis and the implementation of right strategies can nullify such barriers. It’s better for organizations to consult eLearning experts who have vast experience in the field before implementing eLearning.