“Oh God! Please make this work.” This probably is the most common silent prayer that eLearning developers, programmers etc. mumble each time a new course web/app is created and deployed. With the increasing number of eLearning service providers, eLearning creation and delivery has become an invasive and competitive market. While many organizations tend to focus more on the innovativeness of solution, quality too plays a critical role. For solution providers creating good quality course is the essence of its credibility, while for the organizations outsourcing their content requirements, high quality-error free product ensures employee satisfaction, good training and acceptability that eventually leads to better performance and growth of the organization.
However, very often factors including lack of time, resources and budget amongst various others lead to failure of eLearning projects. We have earlier discussed about the 5 Reasons Why eLearning Projects Fail. Knowing that such factors do exist, it is necessary to create courses/projects that can be relied on. Hence, any good eLearning project should essentially be failsafe. And how? Here are some tips that may come in handy.
- Tip 1# Objective and Subjective Understanding
One common reason for the epic fail of eLearning projects is that it doesn’t meet the business need. Further on, in some cases not even the learning goals are achieved, all because something was amiss in the initial understanding. So, take time to objectively understand the requirements, analyse it from various fronts and also subjectively understand what the trainers, the learners and the upper management is looking for. Find the common points that connect them all. The time spent at this stage can definitely decrease the time spent on corrections and modifications later on.
- Tip 2# Open and Valid Discussions
The SME sees the eLearning and declares that it is pointless. Why do you suppose such situations arise? Lack of discussions at different phases often renders an end product that could be sub-standard. The value addition that SMEs and key stakeholders bring along is irreplaceable. It is important to consider that they do not just bring information, but their experiences too that can add a lot to the project in terms of content, interaction models, organizational values and much more. Hence, the key is to establish an open channel for communication and encourage valid discussions.
- Tip 3# Keep the Context in Mind
Dissatisfied, frustrated learners don’t really point towards a successful project. Similarly using games and scenarios without purpose, excessive interactivities without context are common mistakes made by enthusiastic developers and content creators. The key is to understand the learning context well, why and where the course is to be used and for whom (including age group, and skill levels). In short, the eLearning project should match the learning context to be dubbed a success.
- Tip 4# Build Consistency
While innovation is always good, adding too many variations within the same project can often lead to confusion rather than satisfaction. Learning requires a certain degree of uniformity and standardization without which the learners may lose focus. Consistent fonts, button and menus, colors and branding helps in making the learners accustomed to the learning projects, hence allowing them to focus more on the learning aspect than on the interface.
The success or failure of any eLearning project however mostly depends on the content and its presentation. While some projects may require just authoring tools from start to end, others may require lots and lots of discussions and custom development. All of which entirely depends on the learning goal and the targeted performance goals. The main aim hence, should be to achieve both the interim and long-term goals without impacting the productivity and performance of the organization. Any issues that come in the way of the success of eLearning projects can often be dealt with by focusing on the key goal and learning from the errors made in the past.
If you have any queries related to creating eLearning or if you need to discuss about some issues that have affected the development process, just drop a message at firstname.lastname@example.org and we shall assist you at the earliest.