The hype around e-learning might lead you to believe it is a cure for the world’s ills. What difference is it really making to organisations? Sue Clark asks people at the forefront of the intranet revolution
Director of training and development, Prudential Portfolio Managers
We have 3,000 employees worldwide and it is impossible for us to get the right training to the right person at the right time using conventional methods.
Using e-learning allows us to provide development with more value and more focus. We use the analogy of the restaurant. Instead of giving our employees a menu of courses we think are good for them and when it is convenient for us, we stock the larder and allow them to take what they require when they need it.
There are 760 on-line courses and 90 knowledge sharing networks, which people can reach on our intranet or the Internet. They are divided into 90 learning areas under 11 faculties; together we call this “The I”.
E-learning can preclude the shared experience, but The I is a part of a larger focus on performance support which includes traditional courses (details of 3,200 are listed on The I) and coaching. We follow up these conventional methods with short bites of e-mail development to reinforce the learning.
We went live in March 1999 and the 500 of our 3,000 employees who can access the intranet (the rest use the Internet) have visited the site 4,124 times, and looked at 113,356 pages. While not a core driver, the success of e-learning contributed to our coming in 30 per cent under budget last year.
Head of learning distribution ,CGU Insurance
Our networked training PCs were set up primarily to enable access of technical training to our branch-based staff at a time of great activity - the merger between Commercial Union and General Accident.
The key drivers, therefore, were instant and flexible availability of a wide range of modules coupled with the advantages of local delivery of training which reduced time wasted on travel and minimised absence from the workplace.
Staff who were used to classroom events had to adapt to greater use of technology coupled wit