6 Top Tips To Improve Online Collaboration In eLearning Projects
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How To Improve Online Collaboration In eLearning Projects

The nature of eLearning is that online learners and instructors are rarely in the same physical space. Often, this concept stretches to the eLearning team that develops the eLearning course. They might be working from different locations at different times. Even in situations where they have a single office, they may have separate eLearning projects. eLearning projects may run simultaneously, and one process may interrupt another. eLearning Project Management is essential to find an effective way of keeping eLearning course development on track. Below are 6 suggestions on how to facilitate online collaboration in eLearning projects.

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1. Know Your eLearning Team One-On-One

As an eLearning Project Manager, it’s important to have an individual relationship with every one of your eLearning team members. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you get personal with them, or even that you interact outside the office. With a remote eLearning team, this is rarely possible. However, it’s essential that the eLearning Project Manager knows each team member’s weaknesses and strengths. They can use this knowledge to assign tasks more effectively. It makes work more enjoyable for the eLearning team, and it ensures a better final product. It also enhances the efficiency of the eLearning project, since everyone is doing what they do best.

2. Stay In Touch With Everyone

In all human interaction, communication is a deciding factor. People talk to each other all the time, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are communicating. When it comes to virtual tasks that require online collaboration, everybody must know what is going on with the eLearning project. Team members might get stuck in a particular section. They could be unaware of how their colleagues’ work affects their portion of the eLearning project. Clear communication channels help everyone stay on par with each other. Potential challenges and gridlocks can be identified and ironed out. While verbal communication is a great way to connect, it may not be optimal for eLearning projects. As much as possible, keep things on email so that there is a trackable record of progress.

3. Keep It Running On The Cloud

Better still, use an effective Project Management online platform. Virtual teams do have an advantage over physical teams. While they may not be in one physical space, they are all working online. The team leader should ensure there is a central online hub where everything operates from. There are lots of software options available for online collaboration projects, so pick one that works best for you and your eLearning budget. Some existing applications can be tweaked and tailored to suit your eLearning team’s needs. Another important thing to remember is to always have a back-up. Data is generally safe on the cloud, but it doesn’t hurt to have a contingency plan in place. Keep your back-ups in a physical location that is distinct from where the eLearning team is working.

4. Schedule Regular Meetings To Chart Progress

When tasks are broken down into individual components, it can make eLearning projects run faster. This system of work takes advantage of the unique skills that each team member has. It allows them to focus on their specialty. They can make sure their section of the eLearning project is done to the highest quality level. The challenge comes in putting these separate elements back together. Team members will have worked in individual silos. They might not have given much thought to where their part fits into the overall eLearning project. To rectify this problem before it threatens to derail your eLearning project, the eLearning team members should have group meetings once a week or once a month, depending on the size of the eLearning project. It helps to keep everything on track and fix any minor problems before they become major ones.

5. Assign Clear Task Lists And Define Expectations

In a related matter, certain tasks might be overlooked, especially on a big eLearning project. It’s important that the eLearning Project Manager creates a comprehensive list of every little thing that needs to be done. They will then assign individual tasks to specific members of their eLearning team and check in periodically. During the scheduled group meetings, it’s helpful to go through the task list and cross out what has been finalized.

6. Work With Realistic Deadlines

Few things scare adults like looming deadlines. The danger of setting timelines is sticking to them. Put them too far off and you risk leaving things until the last minute. Make the deadlines too tight and the eLearning team feels pressured and ends up producing poor work. The eLearning Project Manager should speak with each team member individually so that they can give a workable time estimate. The eLearning Project Manager can then review the eLearning team as a whole, the project scope, and the time available. Using that information, they can develop timelines that keep everyone reasonably comfortable.

Teamwork is always a challenge, especially when it comes to online collaboration. Positive group mentality is a skill that needs to be consciously nurtured. To ensure that eLearning projects run smoothly, it’s important to harness this spirit of teamwork. Get to know your team members, what they’re good at, what they’re not, and assign their work accordingly. Meet with your eLearning team regularly to monitor progress, and use an online portal to keep track of everything. Maintain open communication lines and set realistic deadlines. Ensure everyone knows what’s required of them, and finally, be nice to your eLearning team. Reward them for work well done, knowing that the success of your eLearning project comes from even the smallest of details.

Interested in improving your skills in eLearning Project Management? Download our free eBook Top Tips To eLearning Project Management And Planning to learn more about the characteristics of a successful eLearning team, how to start planning, determine goals, and pick up the most suitable ID Model for your eLearning project, and how to create a realistic eLearning budget to match your expectations.

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