eLearning is the term used to describe the learning format where training is accessible quickly online (typically through a Learning Management System) in the form of customized courseware or through live virtual classes or webinars. eLearning provides competitive advantage to multinational companies that are spread across wide geographical areas. Used intelligently, it can improve efficiency and help organizations achieve their business objectives effectively. Here’s how eLearning can offer improved workplace training solutions.
Easy access to wider audience: eLearning enables organizations to impart training to their employees, channel partners or customers quickly and easily irrespective of the numbers and their geographical location. Training individuals in groups as large as 5,000 would take up very little resources and even a small group of people can manage it from a remote location. For example, you can train all your sales people about the features and benefits of a new product at the same time. As a result, your sales team gets ready to market the product faster resulting in better sales revenues.
Uniform quality of training: Each employee will have the benefit of learning from the best instructor, as he can now be present at multiple locations without incurring travel costs. In a traditional instructor-led training program, a chosen few are initially trained so that they can impart the same training to their team members. The quality of training will then depend on individual trainers and will not be consistent throughout the organization. eLearning will provide consistency in the training program and ensure every individual is trained in an uniform manner.
Reduced training preparation time: Once an LMS system is in place, it reduces the time spent on logistical arrangements such as travel and lodging of participants, finalization of venue and related arrangements. As the process is automated, training managers need not spend time on administrative responsibilities and can concentrate on developing course content after researching organizational needs.
Reduced learning and development costs: There would be only a one-time development cost for the organization. Travel, accommodation and organizing costs involved during the regular face to face instructor led training can be cut down. Training new employees would also be easier as they can take the training without having to wait for a group or availability of an instructor.
Unaffected by individual schedules: In large organizations, it is difficult to synchronize the time of training to suit each individual. With eLearning, users can access the training program suitable to their schedule and hence there would be less disruption to work. The productivity lost due to the training program will be considerably lower as compared to the conventional system, more so if the training is at a different location or city.
Cater to personal learning needs: Each individual has his or her own pace of learning. In an eLearning environment there is scope for individuals to learn at their individual pace and as a result, they will be in a position to better assimilate what is being taught, which in turn will help in successfully attaining the objectives of the training program.
Scope for wider customer training: If customers are confident about the ease of usage of a product, they are more likely to purchase it. With eLearning, it is possible for customers to be trained about the usage of the product which could help in better product acceptance and reach. This is particularly true in the IT domain where software training needs are high. Companies such as Microsoft, IBM and SDL Trados have been adopting eLearning training programs to train their customers on use of their software for many years now. Most of these companies charge their customers for the training program that they impart. Thus, organizations can expect a new revenue stream though eLearning programs.
To sum up, turning to eLearning solutions can prove to be beneficial to organizations due to the ease with which organizations can reach out to a wider audience at lower costs – be it for product training, customer training or employee motivation.