Now is the time for online learning
With schools closing and teams working from home, online learning is more important now than ever. For businesses, online learning can provide an important way to share information and keep employees engaged when in-person training or presentations are not options.
Traditional elearning programs can take longer periods of time for development. So, how do you meet your training needs for both employees and customers quickly?
5 Strategies for rapid online learning development
1) Think short!
Now more than ever, microlearning can be a great way to go. Microlearning offers short impactful learning content and activities. Think simple learning objectives delivered in quick bursts. Bite-sized modules that can range from 30 seconds to 15 minutes in length are often well received by employees since this format fits more easily into their busy schedules. And studies have shown that retention is higher with microlearning, too.
2) Start with PowerPoints
You might already have prepared PowerPoint presentations on specific topics. Using existing slides makes it fast to take your content to the next level by transforming it into an powerful eLearning module. With a few guidelines for quality, you can record your own voice so there is narration throughout. Work with an experienced partner to package the module to your needs: website ready (HTML5), SCORM (if you have an LMS), or Showpad (or other sales enablement platform).
3) Use simple video
Starting with simple animated or live-recorded video content is a great way to introduce and explain a “knowledge nugget.” Add a couple of activities or knowledge checks and you’ve got an engaging module to bring your team or your customers up to speed. There are simple tools for creating animated videos, and with a little guidance, you can shoot video yourself, or work with a video production partner to get the best quality.
4) Repurpose activity templates
Interactivity makes eLearning more engaging. Using existing templates for different types of activities can significantly reduce development time. Popular activities include drag-n-drops, case studies, simulations, flash cards and, of course, true/false, pick-one, pick-many, or fill-in the blank knowledge checks. Journaling activities that either save to an individual’s drive or to an LMS system are another effective way to increase retention. Learners can write a reflection, think about an experience they’ve had related to the content or create something of their own such as a reminder card. Work with someone that has a good library of templates to kick start your project.
5) Extend the Training – Leverage discussion and forum platforms
Group online learning is not only an effective training tool, it’s yet another way to keep your team connected. Platforms include both synchronous (think everyone online at the same time like a conference call) and asynchronous (think discussion boards). Let’s look at both in a little more detail.
Asynchronous tools that allow learners to participate anywhere, anytime offer powerful learning opportunities. Some examples to consider include:
- Ongoing discussion groups–Instructors moderate the discussion periodically by replying or commenting on the discussion.
- Q&A message board – This tool also provides direct response but in a Q&A format rather than discussion.
- Other internal communications tools, like Slack.
Some common examples of synchronous, instructor-led sessions, in which all learners are present simultaneously in an online environment include webinars, panel presentations, and actual classes. Sessions can also use synchronous “chat” features and online “whiteboards” to enhance interaction.
Some options include:
- ‘Off the shelf’ options such as WebEx or GoToMeeting
- Work with a partner to develop a simple branded interface to conduct these sessions
Topics for online learning in this time of distancing
Even if you don’t have training that was already scheduled before people started working remotely, there are countless topics which are critical to maintaining motivation and momentum during this trying time.
Think about the potential for microlearning on such topics as:
- Updates on new products around the corner
- Sales methodology education
- Conflict management for remote teams
- Time management for working at home
- Team building when the team is not together
- Customer service and account connection when you can’t call in person
- Stress and well-being in troubled times
A partner you can trust.
Our team is passionate about creating learning experiences that go beyond just teaching. Our goal on every project is to help you create eLearning that is purpose driven, highly interactive, experiential, and that results in immediate benefit for the learner.
It can be beneficial to have a partner who’s experienced in instructional design and elearning development to support you in some or all of your online training needs. We have a dedicated team of instructional designers, graphic designers, video and animation specialists, as well as elearning developers. We’re ready to help you get the word out quickly in the midst of uncertainty.
Together, let’s build your online learning platform and your success.
We’ll help you build your next learning course or the content needed to educate others.
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