Balancing both business and technology

Take the e-road to Kensington Olympia next week and hear how to take the e-learning experience to the max.

Finding the balance between technological advance and business need is the main thrust of 2006’s Learning Technologies Exhibition and Conference.

Taking the theme ‘Empowering individuals for a professional workforce’, sessions will cover the latest developments in e-learning and match them with relevant ideas on aligning training and business needs. The conference mixes three ‘tracks’ and plenary sessions to fulfil this programme.

The two-day event will not glorify technology for its own sake but illustrates its best applications, says Vaughan Waller, conference track chairman. Best known for his work as Elearning Network chairman, he will chair ‘Track 3: Effective Learning Using Technology’.

The acknowledged guru

Waller believes e-learning is “evolving itself into existence” as it proves its worth in compliance training and ‘just-in-time’ training. His track will give people plenty of evidence-based discussion to think about.

A key e-learning selling point is speed of delivery to the learner. But how do you prepare the appropriate content quickly enough? Delegates should get the answer on day two when Clare Shell, e-learning project manager at Bupa, will describe how training and a new IT system were built together, and the advantages that brought to training front line managers.

But learning and development professionals have to account for their spending. There will be plenty of advice on hand on that topic from the acknowledged guru on return on investment (ROI), Dr Jack Philips as he takes to the floor on day two.

He will speak at the plenary 3 session ‘Making the business case for value’, and will cover key issues and challenges of implementing measurement and evaluation. He will draw on case studies and examples from the ROI Institute, which he founded in 2004.

Running alongside the conference is the two-day exhibition, which is ex-pected to feature 120 learning providers and attract 3,000 visitors.

At the push of a button

Among the exhibitors are e-learning company Atlantic Link (stand S5), which will be showing its updated version of Capture Point. Designed to cut development times, the device allow trainers to “capture screens and narration at the push of a button”, says director Tony Reddington.

PPI Learning (stand S8) will use the show to say it has changed its name from Spring IT Training. This came into force on 1 January and follows the acquisition two years ago by Vidyah, which has a PPI brand in the US. Managing director Paul Byrne says: “We will now go to market with a new brand, an enhanced range of learning products and some great new deals for 2006.”

And, hoping to cause a stir at its cocktail stand at S9, is bespoke learning services provider Saffron Interactive. It plans to draw attention to its packages by displaying a menu of cocktail ingredients that match its learning components. Visitors can pick and sample their learning mix – hence the cocktail concoctions at the stand – but only non-alcoholic ingredients are on offer!

What it’s all about

Learning Technologies 2006 is held at Olympia 2 London

Date: 25-26 January 2006

Conference opening times: 8.30am-5pm daily

  • The conference has a mixture of plenary and main track sessions with single speaker presentations, two speaker sessions, case studies, theory presentation and panels
  • Exhibition opening times: 10-5pm daily
  • Nearest tube station: Kensington Olympia
  • Nearest railway station: Kensington Olympia
  • Delegate fees: Rate for the two-day conference is £895+VAT
  • Delegates booking before 13 January receive a free iPod Shuffle
  • Other discounts of up to 20% are available, depending on time of booking, membership of certain professional organisations, and number of places required
  • Exhibition entry: free to delegates and visitors
  • Register online:
  • Conference booking hotline: 01730 817601

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