It's not an exaggeration to say that eLearning solutions are the future of employee education. These products remove the need for simultaneous classroom instruction and therefore open up options for companies with lots of workers or teams based around the globe. However, saying that just installing any eLearning initiative will prove transformative is simplifying matters too much. It's important for leaders to pick solutions that will work for them, targeting their employees' unique preferences and needs. ELearning solutions are indeed the next wave of workplace education, but the key rules still apply: The selected tools must effectively convey relevant information to the team.
"Content is everything in the world of eLearning, but form can have a major impact."
Keeping attention focused
Employee training will fall flat if the pupils aren't interested enough to finish the assigned materials. A recent eLearning Industry blog post by contributor Li Whybrow addressed this challenge head-on, describing ways in which these solutions can be made more compelling. While content is everything in the world of eLearning, form can have a major impact, especially when it comes to keeping workers from tuning out.
The tech frameworks powering eLearning courses are responsible for a great deal of the experience workers have. Whereas static and non-interactive resources might lose pupils' interest quickly, HTML5-powered designs that are more like content-rich Web pages than mere documents can hold attention long enough for more in-depth learning to take place.
Whybrow pointed out that when pages are navigated by scrolling, for instance, learners are more likely to stick with what they're being instructed on at that moment. The author recommended giving trainees a sense of control as they move down the page. If users can scroll through a course and encounter new interactive pieces of data as they go, these professionals may be far more attentive than workers presented with static pages that move past one by one and display all the information at once.
According to Whybrow, replacing page turns with scrolling also keeps the user engaged because he or she never leaves the page. All the content that will be presented appears on a single screen, presenting an unbroken experience.
"Improvements to digital content can give employees a more exciting training experience."
Scrolling controls are just one example of an IT breakthrough that helps learning, but they are emblematic of a larger trend. Improvements to the rudimentary form of digital content can give employees a more exciting training experience than they would otherwise encounter. Replacing in-person training with weak eLearning will likely not have much of an effect on retention - strong, rich resources are another matter.
All screen sizes accounted for
Of course, in some cases, great eLearning design may only apply to certain platforms. Another eLearning Industry contributor, Asha Pandey, pointed out that some leaders believe mobile learning solutions are weak, "lite" versions of training software. She explained that this is not the case, and that when organizations opt for customized mLearning products, they can be fully featured rather than suffering in comparison to desktop models. The author urged leaders to take mobile design requirements into consideration when crafting their strategies to give the full training experience on screens that are much smaller than PCs'. The design principles will change, but the objectives will remain.