The global shift towards remote work has created new obstacles, making it challenging for teams to execute planned in-person training. And for many, training is critical, so what can companies do to get necessary training in the hands of learners in this new, largely digital work environment? Today, we’re talking about eLearning strategies, reasons to convert ILT to eLearning, and how to make the shift towards digital in a strategic way.
Benefits of converting ILT to eLearning
While in-person training has its benefits, there are circumstances that call for a shift towards the digital. Luckily, the benefits of eLearning and digital training are many. eLearning courses allow for greater flexibility and accessibility for users, provide consistent content that can be used again and again, and tend to follow a learner-centered approach that lends itself to better learning outcomes and higher engagement.
Shifting towards digital: what to consider
Now that the benefits of digital training and eLearning have been outlined, what’s next? What should companies consider before converting ILT to elearning?
Determine which training is essential
Before you start converting every in-person training to digital, it’s vital to consider which training is crucial for moving the needle in your company. Take this time to sit down as a team and assess what your current business objectives are and which existing training is helping move the company closer to those objectives. Doing this upfront saves money, time, and effort while also ensuring that the digital training you do develop is impactful.
Choose course length and format
Once you have pinned down which training is essential, it’s time to get practical and start thinking exactly how the course should look. Will it be short, medium, or long? Will it be completed at a specific time, or will employees have some choice over when they complete each module? Will the course be a webinar, where an instructor will deliver training in a similar way as before, or is the content best suited for an eLearning course?
Digital training formats: pros and cons
Here are a few options for how to format your ILT for digital along with their pros and cons.
For a less drastic change from start to finish, consider transitioning your in-person training into a webinar. Using tools like Zoom, Google Meet, or Webex enables companies to conduct instructor-led training in a digital space, and with features like breakout rooms that allow learners to discuss and connect, there’s great potential for training that’s engaging and interactive.
Make sure to note that presentations that would have worked well in an in-person setting should be adapted to make up for the lack of in-person interaction that learners are getting. Slides should be informative and educational, and there should also be many opportunities for interaction throughout to avoid having your employee’s eyes glaze over. Turns out, it’s not as simple as uploading a powerpoint and prepping a speaker.
A more involved path to digital training is eLearning course development, but there are many reasons to consider this option. eLearning courses offer limitless potential in that they can be customized to perfectly meet learner and company needs in terms of content and format. eLearning strategies take an intentional step away from top-down, push style learning and embrace what’s known as pull-learning, where the content itself draws the learner in and invites them into the learning process.
If your company is in a tight spot and needs eLearning as soon as possible, another option to consider is off-the-shelf-eLearning. There are many off-the-shelf eLearning marketplaces that offer excellent courses across various industries to meet whatever training needs you may have.
Finally, who’s to say you can’t combine the best of eLearning courses and webinars? The beauty of moving training to digital is that you could easily develop a course that includes webinars as well as interactive course material to be completed in between sessions. And there are so many options for how to modernize your content with technology, whether through interactive video, motion graphics, or even AR/VR.
eLearning course development strategy
It’s clear that there are benefits to digital training/eLearning as well as a need to make the shift in today’s climate. So what are the steps companies should be taking to convert ILT to eLearning?
Prioritize learner needs
In addition to considering company needs, take time to also consider your learner’s needs when developing digital training. What was once an hour of in-person training with a simple slide deck may need to be developed into a much more interactive course in order to maintain the same levels of engagement. Your learners won’t get the same energy from a pre-recorded in-person session, so it may be worth considering converting parts of your training to interactive elements using motion graphics, branching scenarios, or video roleplay.
Decide where your learning will live: LXP vs LMS
When you make the in-person to digital switch, it’s also important to consider where your training will be stored. For many years, companies have used Learning Management Systems (LMS) to store and deliver compliance and training to employees as well as tracking progress and providing feedback. Learning Experience Platforms (LXPs), on the other hand, take a more modern approach by allowing learners to choose their own courses and paths, even receiving recommended content based on their skills, job role, and more.
Invest in an eLearning project management process
Once you have identified your core training and where you’ll house it, it’s time to invest in a robust content development process. In order to successfully convert ILT to eLearning, you will need strong project management.
Most eLearning development requires a thorough gathering of source content, design that is committed to brand integrity, and a clear vision of company and learner needs. Your team will also have to think of pragmatics such as course length, format, and who will lead the development process. This process can be completed in-house (subscribe to our blog for the latest DIY tips) or with the help of an outside partner, like our team.
Look for opportunity in the change
Overall, the thing companies should consider when they convert ILT to eLearning is this: your existing training is likely to change, but remember—not all change is bad. In fact, the process of eLearning course development could be exactly what your company needs to reach its goals, build stronger teams, and create a culture of learning.
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