We all know that in the long run e-learning is less expensive. It is less expensive because of the following reasons:
- Multiple Roll-Outs
- No Distribution Costs
- Reduced Trainer Time
- Reduced Trainee Time
- Standardization of Quality
I accept it, you accept it, and we all accept it; so let us set it aside, and look at what else e-learning can offer to an organization.
Here’s my take:
e-learning has a greater chance of presenting quality content that is more accurate, more interesting, and more effective than an average classroom session.
I think that it is because of the following three factors.
- Not every trainer is a great trainer.
- Not every great trainer is a fantastic Subject Matter Expert.
- Not every Subject Matter Expert is a great trainer.
Take any combination, your chances of getting a great trainer who is also a great SME, aren’t all that high.
e-learning, on the other hand, is developed at a slower pace, and it uses the expertise of different people. It’s easier to get an excellent SME, a good ID, and a great trainer separately, than it is to get them all rolled into one super-being. For this reason, e-learning can be a lot more effective than an average classroom training program. It also results in the following benefits.
e-learning brings in standardization, thus ensuring that every employee experiences the same content that his other colleagues experienced.
A classroom-training program changes with each delivery. The psycho-dynamics in the classroom, the examples taken, the number of participants in the program, even the trainer who trains…they change – and with all these changes, the training effectiveness changes.
e-learning content is created after a thorough audience-analysis. It includes the most appropriate examples and activities, and it really doesn’t matter how many participants take it at a time.
e-learning breaks geographical boundaries between participants, thus enabling them to share knowledge and even propose solutions to the problems faced by others.
e-learning can help you create a border-less collaborative environment, which helps your employees develop synergistic relationships with other employees working in other locations. Their discussions could be aggregated to increase the wealth of knowledge that your organization possesses.
e-learning aligns with the self-concept of the learners, ensuring that they don’t feel threatened; thus, helping them learn more effectively.
Every good employee need not be a great communicator. There are a lot of us who don’t like to interact a lot, and who find classroom collaboration threatening at best. Such fears might manifest themselves in form of class disruption or even a refusal to assimilate new information. e-learning places the learner in his or her most comfortable environment, thus improving learning and assimilation.
Note: This post develops the thoughts presented in “Corporate e-Learning – Mythology, Ideology, and Reality.“