Many training and HR managers have just about reached information overload
when it comes to e-learning, says Dominic Keogh, founder committee member of
the E-Learning Vendors’ Association. It’s
time to sort the wheat from the chaff
Like me, most training managers can scarcely open their post or read a
magazine without being faced by another advertisement, exhibition form or
conference schedule, featuring the same speakers as the last event.
There are also invitations to attend events all over the world, so an
international e-learning specialist could be away all the time and spend a
fortune – yet still scarcely learn anything new.
The whole e-learning industry is suffering from a vast array of poor
e-learning events and publications, and they need to be able to sort the good
from the bad, the general from the specific. It is all too similar and
This applies to suppliers as well as information sources. There are hundreds
of companies that say they are "in e-learning".
Superficially they may all seem the same. But there is a massive difference
in the quality of output between a group of experienced education specialist
trainers who have learnt to use the Web to educate, and that of designers who
put a classroom presentation on to a website and add graphics. One trains, the
other doesn’t. Some companies are capable of producing effective bespoke
content while others are good at "off-the-shelf" standard IT courses.
Training buyers say it is simply too much to take in and sort out. I agree.
Realising this, it was a group of e-learning specialists who got together to
form ELVA to address these issues.
Speaking to training buyers, we appreciated fully how difficult they found
it to decide, for instance, which event to attend. It is very time-consuming
and easy to make the wrong decision.
We want ELVA to be a symbol of quality. It is a symbol of quality because
membership is only open to any individual or organisation that has been supplying
e-learning products or services for two years, subject to three satisfactory
references confirming that the company is actively in the market.
Then ELVA will be reviewing all the information sources and endorsing those
that it believes to be high calibre.
We want to work with the publishers and organisers to make sure that
e-learning buyers gain maximum value.
Unless we do, buyers will be turned-off by the sheer volume and barrage of
As well as being founder committee member of the E-Learning Vendors’
Association, Dominic Keogh is marketing director of bespoke content specialists