Traits Of Profitable Course Growth
Course Structure: How To Achieve Successful Custom Learning Designs
Since on-the-job training is a necessary component of long-term business success, companies need to ensure that they are effectively developing courses that meet the needs of the workforce and help them achieve their real potential. Before starting your own successful course development project, let’s discuss the benefits of eLearning.
eLearning 101: How to Create the Perfect Curriculum for Your Business
Company training courses can represent a significant cost factor. Should your company consider offshoring to a bespoke training program that uses eLearning?
Benefits of eLearning
There are a number of benefits to using an eLearning platform for your course development and training opportunities. Here are some of the benefits of eLearning:
- Reduce the travel and other costs of providing in-person training or education.
- Flexible schedules, access and convenience for employees in different time zones or for employees who cannot attend traditional training courses.
- Additional learning opportunities, as eLearning also allows employees to log information about their tasks and take online quizzes to test their knowledge and skills.
- eLearning platforms can help employees stay up to date with the latest company policies. It also enables a company’s HR department to keep abreast of new policies and procedures while they are in development.
- Learning courses can be updated with new information at any time, which significantly reduces costs for the company over time.
However, there are certain drawbacks to implementing an eLearning strategy, including security concerns for online programs. This has to be weighed against productivity gains when you have everything at hand. In addition, content becomes less relevant if you cannot constantly incorporate fresh material into your training program. Once you understand the benefits – and potential challenges – of eLearning, you can begin creating a custom learning design.
Create a custom e-learning design
Gone are the days when employees had to take a whole day off just to attend a one-hour lecture or seminar. Now the workout can be broken down into smaller, bite-sized pieces that don’t require a large investment on either side.
But not all eLearning courses are created equal and can be frustrating. Employers often need help finding an outside eLearning company that can develop high quality courses for them and provide a variety of topics and skill levels to their employees.
For this new form of training to be successful, employers need course creators who can create courses that add value for both the employee and the employer. You also need content writers who can create engaging content with valuable information. This helps ensure that employees enjoy what they learn in professional training courses and actively look forward to new courses instead of dreading them. This also gives them all the information they need to do their jobs better and more efficiently, with minimal oversight from managers on site or elsewhere in the world due to remote desktop connections or other technology platforms.
There are numerous ways to design a custom eLearning course for your audience, and some are more important than others.
There are four steps in particular to developing an effective course: planning, design, development, and deployment.
Planning is often the most time consuming component of a custom learning design. In this phase, the goals of the course are set and a need or opportunity statement is formulated.
First and foremost, you want to find out what the company is trying to achieve with the course. Perhaps you want your team members to be more productive at work, or you might want to help them lead healthier lifestyles. That’s what they get when they graduate. But how do you know what works? How do you know which approach will maximize your success? You can’t just pick a topic out of nowhere and hope for the best!
To find out which topics work and which don’t, I recommend that you get detailed feedback from your team using a simple four-question survey. This survey gives them a chance to get their thoughts on what they would like most from the course and to help them understand what would give them a more complete experience.
There can also be tertiary benefits to feeling stressed or unfulfilled in their current position – many employers mention how survey interventions can greatly extend the life of their team by finding problems that arise before they grow. The purpose of this survey should be to provide constructive feedback that will enable you to offer employees eLearning courses that will help them do better in their role or improve their quality of life outside of work. Four questions to ask yourself at this stage are:
- What is your company’s culture most valued?
- What are your business goals?
- Which information is most relevant?
- What do employees want to learn most?
Next, a scope statement is drawn up that outlines which topics will be addressed and how they will be approached in order to achieve the stated goals. Once these elements are made, it becomes a lot easier to move into the design phase. You will use the information you gathered from your employees and managers during the planning phase to create this statement of work.
During the design phase, curriculum planners work with subject matter experts to develop learning objectives for each topic (both general and specific). Care should be taken to ensure that all goals are measurable and verifiable before proceeding with the development phase.
At this stage, it is important to think about the following considerations:
1. Identify what types of training materials will best help you achieve your goals
Does a blended learning approach work best? An eLearning module for self-study? Group workshop or coaching? Think about which format offers the most value and the best work for your audience.
2. Develop a design
Develop a concrete design for your course by going through the lesson modules in turn and thinking carefully about how each piece can build on or reinforce previous pieces. That specific design should ultimately achieve an overarching goal or set of goals that you created in the first phase.
It can also be helpful for learners to use storyboards to plan their content. This process can take some time to get you a design that meets all of your needs, but it will likely pay off in the end.
phase of development
Next is the development phase, or authoring phase, which involves writing scripts for each lesson in your training material. The role of the technical experts in this phase is crucial as they ensure that all logistical requirements are met before moving on to the development phase where programming takes place.
There are many different ways organizations can use e-learning to develop and deliver courses. The most popular methods include:
Video-based training is a great option as it is an inexpensive way to train multiple people and allows you to create in-depth and engaging presentations that will last over time.
Course materials are text-based online content that enables learners to interact with web-based videos, ratings, and simulations. The course materials are ideal for building specialist skills, as they enable learners to practice and consolidate their new skills through guided practice.
These tools allow your company to test employee learning through ratings, quizzes, games, surveys, and more to measure what individuals have learned. Assessment software can be the same as course material or it can be an additional product used separately from other eLearning methods.
Lecture recording is ideal for employers who want their employees to be “hands-on” with job development. Lecture recording enables companies to video record a training session for employees to watch as they see fit.
This is the final step that puts it all together and where you actually create a custom learning design. It is important to test the eLearning curriculum before distributing it to employees. Once you’ve created an organized design, it’s time to start thinking about the logistics of getting it ready.
Some questions to consider are:
- How long should it take students to complete the course?
- Who should register with them?
- How will you enroll in it?
- Is certification required after completing the training?
- What is included in the entrance fee?
- Is a live webinar recording required for this course?
- Should some modules require professional hosting or should learners have access to a virtual meeting room?
- Is self-paced learning feasible for your company given time constraints and technical skills (e.g., relatively low bandwidth speeds or unreliable internet connections)?
After you have carefully worked through these questions and found the answers, put together your own individual eLearning design. The deployment phase is the exciting thing! This is when all of your hard work pays off and comes to life.
We all know that eLearning has had a dramatic impact on corporate workforce. There are so many positives associated with eLearning that it makes sense that many companies would want to start their own in-house training programs.
If you’d like to develop your own custom eLearning design, follow the steps outlined above. By going through these stages and carefully weighing each one, you are well on your way to creating an effective and engaging custom eLearning design!
And if you need help with any of the above issues, there is always a top eLearning agency that will be happy to guide you through the process.
Download the eLearning 101 eBook: How to Build the Perfect Curriculum for Your Business to discover action points that you can follow to launch a bespoke L&D strategy for your team. It is required reading for companies weighing the pros and cons of outsourcing and wanting to learn more about curriculum design from industry experts.
eWyse is an award-winning agency that uses a unique methodology called the 3C Approach to create perfect eLearning courses that engage, entertain and educate learners while helping companies achieve their goals. Let’s discuss your ideas!