Questions and answers on e-learning
Q: We have invested a significant amount of money in developing an e-learning solution but the take-up from our employees has been limited. How can I stop our e-learning project becoming a ‘white elephant’?
A: E-learning can clearly benefit the bottom line but you must get buy-in from the people who will be using it. When considering return on investment for e-learning, a huge assumption that is often made is that you will get 100% enrolment.
A study by the American Society of Training Development in 2000 showed that even when e-learning is mandatory only about 69% of people started an online course.
You should seriously consider allocating a portion of your e-learning budget to marketing and promotion - even as much as 20%. This is a new approach and as with all training programmes you will need to generate positive awareness to get people to buy into the concept and get “‘bums on seats” at an early stage and increase their numbers over time.
Q: How do i get the IT/MIS department to buy into our e-learning programme?
A: It is important that your company's IT/MIS department is not left to set the pace and make unilateral decisions with regard to your company's e-learning programme. It is equally important that the IT/MIS department is consulted from an early stage. You will save yourself much time and frustration by making your IT managers aware of your implementation plans and the various technologies you are considering from the start of the project.
Your IT department will generally be concerned about two aspects of your e-learning plans:
- Will the workload for the IT support team increase inordinately?
- Will the existing IT infrastructure be able to support the new initiative without performance becoming degraded?
You should take both of these concerns into account when reviewing the options available to you. Be prepared to set aside some additional budget for upgrading existing IT systems and/or hiring additional IT support staff should that prove necessary.
Opting for an ASP solution rather than an in-house Learning Manage