What makes a company stand out to top talent? As it turns out, employees want to work for companies that are dedicated to and invested in their professional—and even personal—growth. And one of the first points of interaction between an employee and a company is through training. While there are thousands of ready-to-go eLearning options available for purchase, we’re making the case for custom eLearning development, because we believe it has the potential to attract and keep dedicated and successful employees for your company.
What is custom eLearning?
The simplest way to define custom eLearning is by defining what it’s not. Alternative to custom is off-the-shelf eLearning. Off-the-shelf eLearning includes courses that are pre-designed and available for purchase across multiple industries. Rather than going through the process to build a course from scratch, companies can purchase ready-made courses to train and develop their employees.
Custom eLearning, on the other hand, is developed with a specific company, audience, and subject matter in mind and is tailored to perfectly fit your company’s objectives. It has all of the content inclusions of off-the-shelf with the added feature of context.
Benefits of custom design eLearning
There are many benefits to custom eLearning, and here are a few worth highlighting.
1. It’s branded from the bottom up
With custom eLearning, you don’t have to worry about the look and feel of your learning not aligning with your brand identity. When you choose custom, you get to decide how to infuse your brand’s personality and look into every aspect of the learning, from the graphics, typography, imagery, and even the audio.
When eLearning is branded like this, your employees can connect more deeply with your company while they learn, multiplying the potential impact.
2. It allows you to choose the best content and leave out the rest
When you choose off-the-shelf learning, you have to take it as-is. Even if an entire module or section doesn’t apply to your employee base, it’s there and even has the ability to cause distraction. When you choose to invest in custom eLearning, you can decide from the start which content is most relevant and suits your business objectives.
3. It can be delivered however you need it to be
Off-the-shelf learning structures are already predetermined. While using these courses may involve less planning, the format is static, leaving no room for potential innovation. With custom eLearning, the doors are wide open to structuring learning in the way that works best for your employees. And with modern technology like motion graphics, video, and augmented reality, the possibilities are truly endless for making eLearning that’s both powerful and interesting.
In addition to choosing how content is delivered with custom, you also have the freedom to structure the course in a way that makes the most sense in your company’s context. You could make a longform course meant to be completed at the employee’s pace, a course that’s meant to be completed in bite-sized portions in a group context, or some combination of both. This added personalization will enable you to make sure that every training you run is perfectly suited for its intended purpose.
Tips for maximizing impact with custom eLearning solutions
The benefits are clear for custom eLearning, and here are our top three tips for developing high quality custom eLearning solutions whether it’s something your team is tackling internally or you’ve decided to work with a creative learning partner:
1. Develop activities that mimic real world job scenarios
If you’re going to invest in custom eLearning, you should take full advantage of it and offer modules, activities, and feedback that specifically connect to things that your learners engage with in their positions.
Rather than creating generic sales activities, connect the activity to products or services your company finds particularly challenging to sell. This gives learners the unique opportunity to apply their skills, confront potential blind spots, and even fail (and learn from it) in a safe environment. Creating these close-to-real scenarios creates confidence in your employees, which translates to better job performance and enjoyment in the long run.
2. Infuse your eLearning solutions with your brand’s personality and values
You might as well buy an off-the-shelf learning solution if you’re not planning to infuse your branding and company values into every aspect of your custom eLearning. From the language you use, to the presentation style, to the static and motion graphics as well as audio, you have a unique opportunity with custom eLearning to tell your company’s story, share your values with learners, and increase the usability of your learning.
3. Create custom eLearning modules to level up your learning
With custom eLearning, you can say goodbye to timed voiceovers, pointless quizzing, or other knowledge checks that create boredom for learners. Instead, you can invest in creating dynamic, branded experiences through motion graphics and even virtual reality that increase engagement and drive learning.
In our work with a popular hotel chain, we were able to do just that for their social media training. In order to challenge employees and reveal how different behaviors on social media could affect their interactions with customers, we custom developed a faux social media feed with custom eLearning modules that incorporated branching scenarios. Depending on how employees behave in the social feed, their outcome changes, revealing how they might behave differently in the future, and how their actions ultimately affect the hotel’s brand image.
In addition to branching scenarios, consider building modules that are self-paced, enabling each learner to go at their own speed. This added touch communicates to employees that you are invested in their success and supportive of how they learn best. And when employees feel their company cares, it inspires their own wellbeing as well as the company’s.
How to start custom eLearning development
Not sure where to start with custom eLearning development? We think, more than anything else, it’s important to have a solid case for learning. This means narrowing down your options and even being willing to consider whether or not eLearning is the best solution for the problems you’re currently facing.
Second to having a good case for learning is to have a clear and thorough understanding of your learners. Interviews, focus groups, and assessments could be a good place to start to gather this information. Either way, Maestro is happy to meet you where you’re at in the eLearning development process to help you create something personal and memorable for your employees while driving future success.
Ready to get started with custom eLearning?
Let’s work together to create a beautifully branded, personalized solution for your company.
Ready to get started with custom eLearning?
Let’s work together to create a beautifully branded, personalized solution for your company.Contact us