Identifying eLearning Factors In Business ROI

eLearning Factors In Business ROI

Training is essential to the success of any organization as the premise that a well-educated workforce will pay dividends as a Return On Investment (ROI). Research is indicative of several factors leading towards an influence of ROI as a result of sound training content and delivery.

In the modern workplace, digital training is providing a much-required capability in eLearning to even the most austere operations and organizations. Why is this happening? eLearning platforms have gone global!

What Return On Investment Is

Return On Investment, better known as ROI, is a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) that is often used in businesses and corporations to determine profitability, productivity, and performance as a result of expenditure (investment) in a particular asset. ROI is a proven and useful method for measuring defined success over time to make future business decisions.

Why ROI Is So Valuable

The ability of organizations to calculate Return On Investment is extremely valuable for any operation. Knowing where resources are allocated is a basic concept that both management and employees need to understand in order to strengthen organizational financial success. ROI calculations provide a better understanding of how good a business is doing and which areas could use improvement to help achieve strategic goals and objectives.

ROI calculations for eLearning would include more factors than just attending a course or completing a course online-on time. However, it is relatively easy, first, you can quantify the organizational marginal gains before and after the implementation of eLearning programs; second, you can quantify the total cost associated with the eLearning program, then, divide the business gains from your investment by your eLearning cost over a period of time to conclude with a percentage or ratio. Accurate (eLearning – ROI) calculations provides numerous advantages. Knowing the investment’s impact on your organization is vital in order for you to determine how to allocate resources but most importantly how are the employees empowered with the gained knowledge and can use it to make any organization thrive. As a result, eLearning is one of those investments that can provide a multiplying positive effect on measurable organizational profitability, productivity, and performance.

Organizations of all kinds and sizes are now benefitting from eLearning solutions that are now easily available and accessible to every corner of the globe. Science and technological advances are now providing the infrastructure to make knowledge available to millions, to the point where the corporate function of training and development through eLearning becomes a seamless effort to assist decision makers in making sound investment decisions. The correlation of eLearning and ROI factors seem to be a positive relationship that would enhance managerial functions like hiring new employees, developing sales strategies, and adding new products or services.

Socio-economics and technologically relevant training are reshaping training as we know it. However, how is this translated into corporate performance, improvements in job skills, and profitability? Well, "the jury still out", most teaching-learning functions at the corporate level are still measuring the typical "knowledge gap". According to Reich (1983), organizations define training success as a result of measuring "the gap between what the trainer teaches and what the trainee learns" by administering pre- and post-assessments which provide data to evaluate the effectiveness of a training program.


However, this is 2018 now, and the sophistication in the evaluation of training programs demands the measurement and observation of correlation significances of training impacts on social, institutional, and economic domains. For instance, resource persons are much more interested in the training evaluation processes because corporate decision makers exert their influence on the implementation of training programs that will increase ROI. Scientific and quantitative methods are not very popular in measuring training effectiveness correlated to profitability in the business world. Nevertheless, progress in this area is steadily moving forward, but more research is necessary. For instance, scientific research would study dependent variables like knowledge gain, job performance, training effectiveness, cost reductions, and customer satisfaction to determine their influence from the implementation of corporate eLearning programs. In 2009, Rajeev, Madan, and Jayarajan provided, in their study of Kirkpatrick's model of evaluation of academic training courses, the hypothesis that for the success of any academic program, it is necessary that every course should have an inbuilt monitoring and evaluation system.

Clearly, research continues to evolve to demonstrate how eLearning is contributing to a business or organization’s dependent variable, for instance, how eLearning contributes to an ROI index as the dependent variable, in which previously outlined dependent variables become the independent variables of a research to measure the real "bottom line".