Developing Custom eLearning For Corporate Training
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Developing Custom eLearning For Corporate Training: What To Consider As An L&D Manager

Taking on the development of a custom eLearning project is an exciting opportunity for a Learning and Development Manager. It’s the chance to create content that is uniquely suited to meet organizational needs and perhaps push the boundaries of design and delivery models. But any experienced L&D manager will also tell you it can be fraught with peril. We’ve all experienced pain points in this type of complex project. It’s easy to develop a myopic view, focusing only on content and delivery and forgetting the broader aspects of the project. Consider the following 5 points before kicking off your project. These concepts are critical to addressing the most common pain points which, if addressed, will ensure success. Let’s take a closer look.

eBook Release: Providing An Amazing Custom eLearning Solution For Corporate Training
eBook Release
Providing An Amazing Custom eLearning Solution For Corporate Training
Inno-Versity offers a marvelous custom eLearning solution for corporate training and provides a complete guide for L&D professionals.

Strategic Planning

What does the culture of learning look like at your company? Does leadership place a high value on the continuous development of employees? Or is learning purely reactive, implemented because of a compliance requirement or crisis? Individuals thrive in environments where continuous development and innovation are valued. So how do you create this kind of culture of learning at your company?

Integrate learning into employee development plans. Provide opportunities for employees to become better at their jobs or more innovative in their fields.

Convey the value of learning at your company and create excitement for the learning opportunities that are provided. This could involve internal marketing campaigns that communicate your investment in employees’ continuous development.

Focus on every detail when creating eLearning opportunities. Will most employees access via a mobile device? Make sure design takes this into account. Does everyone have easy access to the delivery platform and all the updated browsers or plugins?

Recognize newly acquired skills or completed competencies by employees. This helps employees see how their accomplishments feed into the success of the company as a whole and reinforce the importance of continuous learning at your company.

Seek regular feedback on instructional materials, and develop a formalized revision process. Great eLearning can become stale quickly, but with good feedback and some simple changes, it can stay relevant for a long time.

Communication

Most companies spend large budgets to market their products to consumers with just the right message and clear brand standards. But how much time and energy are spent creating learning materials that make employees feel valued in the same way? eLearning, in particular, reaches employees where they are in a just-in-time manner. But how many are aware of what materials are available and the fastest path to access them? When proper excitement is built with an internal marketing plan and constant communication follows with access information, FAQ’s, and problem-solving support, employees are far more likely to take advantage of available eLearning opportunities.

People who work in a culture of learning understand that their company is invested in them. Communication about learning opportunities should reflect this investment. Below are just a few ways you can communicate this value to your employees:

  • Optimize design for delivery
  • Provide quality feedback on assessments
  • Personalize the delivery module
  • Honor your champions
  • Value learner evaluations of content and revise

Project Management

Team projects can get bogged down if proper planning is not put into place; that much is true for any business project. A solid project plan, to which both parties agree, can help guide the design and development process. But developing eLearning can pose some particular challenges. Whether you’re working with an internal team or an external vendor, the review and revision processes are typically the greatest challenges. No one likes to be caught in an endless revision cycle, yet no one wants to produce less than quality materials.

Since it is often hard for stakeholders to visualize eLearning content (without seeing at least a basic version in context), an iterative process usually works best. Determining stakeholders and SMEs, agreeing on the number of review cycles, and assigning one person to be responsible for curating review and final sign-off all help the project flow more smoothly. Finally, make sure to communicate the timeline and number of review cycles clearly at the project kick-off, and determine timeline modifications if those aren’t met.

Design

Great eLearning content presented poorly will have minimal impact on performance. Your content should be memorable, engaging and practical, and presented in a way that is immediately useful. And this only happens with good design. Design affects the ability to learn and apply what is presented. We all know that a good story will grab our attention and stay with us, but a list of facts is immediately forgotten. Make sure to use a wide array of methods to ensure that your learning solutions not only cover the content required but present it in a way that facilitates genuine comprehension and allows the learner to practice new skills in “real-life” situations. Custom graphics, eye-catching animations, and engaging interactions can make your learning experiences come to life. So, before you start your next project, spend time thinking about using design to enhance learning engagement and retention. You’ll be surprised how small design changes can improve the overall impact of the project.

Learning

Don’t skip this paragraph! It might seem obvious (after all, the title of this article is 'developing custom eLearning') but before you dive right into storyboarding and writing scripts, make sure eLearning is the correct form of delivery for your audience. It’s easy to make assumptions or to skip this step because you work with the same populations all the time. But if you take the time to listen and ask a key question, you’ll likely find a surprise or two. These surprises may lead you to change the focus or even the learning experiences you decide to create. By asking this question as you develop learning materials, work with internal stakeholders or write eLearning content, you should find yourself changing the way you work. So, let’s ask this question:

What Do Your Learners Need?

Sometimes figuring out the needs of your learners begins by intentionally listening. Traditional needs analysis methods are great and proven tools, but here are a few unconventional suggestions that will help you discover the needs of your learners by listening.

Listen, First Thing In The Morning

How do they get to work or school? Do they commute? Would mobile learning be a better solution? Do you know that content should be designed (not just delivered) differently for a mobile device? It should look different, depending on whether it’s being viewed on a cell phone versus a tablet because users hold them at a different eye level.

Listen On The Floor

In the office, or out on the manufacturing floor, what frustrations are expressed? Do learners struggle with mastering skills, or are there personal productivity needs? Would team building and relationship skills strengthen the climate of your organization?

Listen On Monday

What did they do all weekend? How do your learners spend their leisure time? Are they engaged in active or passive activities?

Listen When Learners Are Assigned A New Task

Where do they go as a first step? Do they ask others, do a quick Google search, view videos on YouTube or reference a how-to guide?

Listen To How Learners Socialize At Work

Do they prefer groups or individual activities? Have you created a climate that values sharing knowledge and practical applications but also provides an opportunity for individualized learning?

So dive in! Take on that new eLearning project and the opportunity to create custom materials for your organization. Just make sure to address the points above, and you’ll be on your way to success.

Are you an L&D professional looking forward to adopting great corporate training practices which employees will find more than useful? Download our eBook Providing An Amazing Custom eLearning Solution For Corporate Training to discover when companies should invest in custom eLearning, the factors to determine the appropriate level of interactivity needed, the stages of the custom eLearning development process, and much more...

If you require to dig deeper on the topic of custom eLearning development, you should absolutely check the webinar Developing Custom eLearning For Corporate Training.  This webinar will be led by experts who have led some of the largest eLearning projects in the world.

 

eBook Release: Inno-Versity
Inno-Versity
Inno-Versity creates custom elearning for some of the largest companies in the world. We remove complexity from critical elearning projects. We are an in-house team of talented and experienced instructional designers, artists, and learning experts.
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