What to Avoid to get eLearning Adopted

While a range of companies have adopted eLearning and are reaping tangible benefits, some are still hesitant to give it a go. Within a company, both decision makers and employees have concerns about eLearning, often due to a lack of awareness of its benefits, resistance to change, and cost-related concerns.

Today, companies and employees need to adapt continuously in order to remain relevant and competitive in a rapidly evolving business environment. Limiting corporate training to one or two instructor-led classroom programs a year is no longer adequate. Employees need ongoing training to keep upgrading their skills.

eLearning enables enterprises to train a large number of employees as and when suitable across locations on an ongoing basis at a lower cost.

In order to overcome resistance to eLearning, you want to avoid:

Ignoring employee inertia

As is the case elsewhere, there will be some people in your company who are reluctant to try anything new. Change is worrying for some because they’re unsure of being able to deal with it and of its outcome. If you neglect making hesitant stakeholders aware of the benefits of eLearning and assuring them that they have nothing to fear, you have a hurdle looming ahead. Individuals unsure of how eLearning will impact them will be averse to embracing it.  

Overlooking the importance of apprising decision makers of its many business benefits

Though many enterprises across the globe have enthusiastically and successfully incorporated eLearning into their corporate training program, some companies are wary of whether it is a worthwhile investment. You want to explain to key decision makers that eLearning offers employees the flexibility to learn only what they need when and where it suits them, and that there are significant cost savings when implemented on a wide scale. Also, eLearning doesn’t disrupt daily work flow because employees don’t have to attend at a specific time and it has the additional benefit of allowing for continuous training. All this leads to enhanced employee engagement and performance, contributing to business growth and competitiveness.

Irrelevance and tedium

Employees want to learn only what is relevant for their role. They’re likely to lose interest if they have to work through a whole lot of superfluous information. You want to design courses that offer role-specific training. eLearning can easily be setup to provide different courses to different groups. Indifferent design is another hurdle. Converting a Powerpoint presentation and adding audio is not the same as a person doing the presentation. For eLearning to be effective, you need to engage learners. Design or purchase courses that stimulate people to complete the course. Video and interactive elements are key for interactive learning.

Cumbersome user interface and technical bumps

Failing to setup an user-friendly system is a sure way of discouraging learners to continue with a course. Why would employees who have plenty of work to do spend hours struggling to navigate pages and systems, keep stumbling against password and other issues or have a difficult time finding the courses they are required to take?  In order to make it easy for employees to work through and complete a course, you want a system that has user-friendly interfaces, minimizes technical glitches and provides help when needed.

Ignoring employees unaccustomed to learning on their own

eLearning presents a different approach to learning, wherein it’s up to the learner to work without in-person guidance from training executives or specialists. This can lead to uncertainty among some employees who might lack the confidence to manage without an instructor. You might want to create a sample for them to become familiar with before they take a full course.

Lack of clarity about when employees are expected to train

Traditional classroom training normally happens during working hours. While some employees prefer to learn on the commute and in their free time, not everyone is happy about allocating personal time to training. Let them know that hours will be assigned for learning and they don’t have to learn only in their free time. Setting a deadline and letting them work towards it as they deem fit provides them with some flexibility and control as far as time and place are concerned. In some instances, providing employees with the ability to take courses “anytime” and “everywhere” might be a potential liability. For example, in a retail environment you might want to limit when training takes place, thereby managing the cost of potential overtime for nonexempt employees.

Ignoring tech literacy issues and concerns about maintaining the system

Not all employees are tech savvy. Providing technical training for employees who lack experience is necessary before you implement eLearning. You also want to rope in your IT department to offer help when needed. However, a good eLearning system should be easy to use and navigate. Also, not all employees have an email address. Understanding workarounds and what works best for your organization needs to be reviewed on an individual basis.

A company will understandably have concerns about system maintenance. If the company is responsible for maintenance, you need to explain what that would involve over the long term. Managed cloud elearning solutions don’t require technical maintenance by the client, but other solutions do. It’s prudent to make decision makers aware of technical expertise required and maintenance costs.

It’s important to address all these issues in order to make eLearning a part of your corporate training strategy.

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