7 Time Management Tips For eLearning Professionals

7 Time Management Tips For eLearning Professionals
Summary: In this article, I'll share 7 helpful tips on how to save time and meet deadlines when designing and developing your eLearning deliverables. Whether you're working on an online training module that needs to be completed ASAP, or on a K-12 eLearning course that is more complicated and time consuming than you had anticipated, these time management tips can help you to stay on track and significantly boost your productivity.

Time Management Tips For eLearning Professionals

As they say: “time is money”. This couldn't be more true for eLearning professionals who are constantly dealing with quickly approaching deadlines. However, managing your time effectively can become a real challenge when contending with a lengthy list of eLearning projects. The good news is that there are a number of ways that you can make the most of every workday, so that you have the opportunity to produce high quality eLearning deliverables with minimal stress and maximum results.

  1. Use an online calendar to keep track of eLearning tasks and deadlines.
    There are a variety of free online tools, such as Google Calendar, that you can use to stay on top of deadlines and milestones. You can even set reminders for a day or two ahead of the deadline, so that you will know when it's time to take care of the last minute details. When beginning an eLearning project, add any important assignments or tasks to your calendar right away. This will ensure that you won't forget any important eLearning project considerations that you've discussed with the client. For example, if you've agreed that the multimedia elements of the eLearning course will be submitted for their review by the 15th of the month, integrate that into your calendar so you won't be caught off guard when that milestone approaches. It may also be beneficial to color code tasks that are more important than others, or highlight them with unique or bold fonts to set them apart from the rest of the calendar entries.
  2. Always leave room in your schedule for the unexpected.
    This is a tip I learned in my eLearning career, after dealing with numerous eLearning project setbacks caused by unforeseen events. Always leave a small space in your schedule to account for the unexpected. You are bound to encounter some problems when working on an eLearning deliverable, even if it is relatively simple and straightforward. In fact, these problems can delay everything else in your schedule. For example, if you have managed your time effectively and are on track to finishing an eLearning course tomorrow, an issue that arises with another eLearning deliverable may delay your progress and force you to push back your deadline. As such, you'll want to set aside a bit of time each day in your schedule to account for unforeseen issues, so that they won't negatively impact other tasks or assignments.
  3. Find an online project management platform that works for you.
    If you are working with a team, an online project management platform can give you the opportunity to stay on task and collaborate with your eLearning team conveniently. The key is finding the project management platform that has the features and functions you want, so that you can get the most benefit of it. For example, if you are looking for a way to carry out live chats with your team members and to share documents, you'll want to look for a free project management platform that offers these features.
  4. Don't be afraid to delegate.
    As much as we like to believe that we can do it all, this is often not the case. You may want to consider about delegating tasks to your eLearning team members or colleagues for the sake of time management. If you feel as though someone may be able to get the job done faster or more efficiently, or even if you are weighed down with many tasks, delegating out the work allows you to free up your time for other aspects of the eLearning project and maximizing your productivity. Also, you may want to consider outsourcing if you are on your own, especially if you are running short on time or think that an eLearning freelancer may be ideally suited for a particular task.
  5. Remove any distractions.
    If you are working under a deadline or want to make the most of your working time, remove any distractions from your work space. For example, if you are developing an eLearning deliverable that requires a great deal of your attention, concentrate on the task-at-hand and avoid checking constantly your emails, answering the phone, or watching YouTube videos that are not part of your subject matter research. This will help you to be more productive while you are working and even to produce a higher quality eLearning course.
  6. Know how to get the most use of the eLearning software and tools.
    If you're trying to get the most out of your workday, it's important to learn about the eLearning Software available to you, such as the Learning Management Systems and the eLearning Authoring Tools, as well as how you can use them effectively. In addition, there are several educational tools that can be applied in eLearning such as Google Apps. Google Apps in eLearning can help you to collaborate online, develop live training events, and create surveys and forms. Being aware of the eLearning software and tools that are at your disposal can help you to save time and be more productive with your daily operations.
  7. Get your priorities straight!
    The last, and possibly most important, time management tip I'd like to share with you centers around prioritization. For each eLearning project, or even for each workday, you should assess what's really important and what can be either put off until a later date, or be removed from your to-do list altogether. Time is valuable, and you don't want to devote a great deal of it to tasks or assignments that aren't working toward your end goal, either personally or professionally.

These time management tips for eLearning professionals are the result of years worth of experience in the eLearning industry. I'm sure that they'll offer you the same time saving benefits that they've offered me, and that will help you to make the most of every minute when working on your future eLearning projects.

Overall, managing eLearning Projects is extremely important for successful eLearning course design. The article Stages of Effective eLearning Project Management features the stages of effective eLearning project management and skill set required for managing eLearning Projects.

Are you looking for additional time saving tips? The article Time-Saving Tips for Online Instruction features 5 tips that can help you manage your time more effectively in online teaching environments.

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