4 Things To Forget About eLearning Platforms In 2016
It’s a rare event to read “training” or “education” in the same sentence with “bleeding edge” or “emerging technologies”.
Both trainers and educators have a well-deserved reputation as being slow to change and are often seen as a few steps behind when it comes to technology adoption.
This reluctance to move forward is often with good reason. Learning and training materials have been crafted over time and moving to new or updated systems seems like a monumental undertaking. It can also be a little fuzzy how time-tested materials will translate on a new platform.
As a result, trainees and students are often left with outdated binders, strange websites with old instructional videos, and clunky survey tools to measure progress.
The good news for both students and teachers is that the eLearning tools now available make implementation and adoption easy with clear outcome expectations for the educator.
Here are 4 things to forget in 2016:
- eLearning platforms are expensive.
Many organizations balk at eLearning solutions because of the price. The truth is, there are numerous technologies out there that can support eLearning needs for dozens of students or trainees for less than $100 a month. In fact, most emerging platforms offer a “try-before-you-buy” option that allows companies to use almost all features of the platform before they pay one red cent.
- Corporate is better than startup.
I won’t belabor this point too much, but I will insist in many instances the direct opposite is true, especially for customers looking for flexibility and the latest technology. Peruse “established” corporate eLearning sites and chances are you’ll find outdated systems that are difficult to manage and impossible to customize. Startups often are running on the latest technologies, have been built with flexible content management systems as a backbone and are more willing to work with customers to create the experience they want. The stability of the cloud also now offers start-ups enterprise security, speed and storage that rivals any corporate system.
- Facebook + Twitter = Social.
Brandon Hall Group’s 2014 Social and Collaborative Learning Study found that about 85% of companies are experimenting with social learning tools and techniques. But they might be doing it wrong. While social learning, according to BHG, is “from an anthropological standpoint … probably the oldest form of learning”, there is this assumption that integrating social is as simple as adding a blue Facebook button. BHG’s study is a fascinating look at how companies recognize that to stay competitive they need to take a new collaborative and experiential approach to learning, but for some reason are stuck in the top-down “instruction to learner” model. It doesn’t have to be this way. Many new eLearning platforms have the hallmarks of social learning (collaboration, recognition, personalization) built into their core.
- eLearning takes time.
eLearning platforms who quote “six to 12 months” to customers looking to move current content or training modules over to a new system are in a for a rude awakening. Emerging platform companies are fast, quick, and accurate and can have a customer’s content up in weeks, if not days, ready to be consumed and acted upon by learners.
In 2016, eLearning platforms are more accessible, powerful, and affordable than ever, allowing educators and trainers to concentrate more on content and teaching than how the knowledge is being delivered.