We think that eLearning is a valuable addition to a business; we wouldn’t be in this industry if we didn’t. But even we can admit there are (rare) occasions when simulation and scenario-based learning simply isn’t the right move for a company.
In an attempt to be 100% objective and 100% honest, we’re taking a look at when eLearning wouldn’t work for you:
1) Engagement isn’t that important
It’s hard to imagine a business that doesn’t have ‘employee engagement’ on the tips of their tongues these days, but we suppose it is possible that they exist. Companies with such great bottom lines that they don’t need their revenue to double, or with such awesome retention stats that they scoff at the idea of a 90 percent lower chance of staff turnover.
For the rest of us, engagement matters - in fact, it’s quickly becoming a modern competitive battleground. eLearning is a powerful tool for any contender, promoting long-term, ongoing investment in the work and the workplace, driving higher employee engagement and all the benefits that come with it.
But if you’re lucky enough to not need such an advantage, don’t bother with eLearning.
2) You’ve got a never-ending budget
“Open budget”: music to the ears of any manager. The idea of being able to spend what you need, when you need it, without needing to rationalize or reduce.
Unfortunately, in our experience, those two words rarely appear together in a project brief, especially with training programs. Learning is expensive and balancing costs while still getting robust training is a constant challenge. That’s why many turn to eLearning for a higher ROI and the ability to deploy anywhere, any time, without the need for hands-on trainers or physical learning spaces.
But if you do manage to wrangle “open” and “budget” together in that order for your training project, give eLearning a miss and invest in gold-plated notebooks for everyone instead. Treat yourself.
3) You’re a staunch traditionalist
Not everybody learns the same way or at the same pace. Teachers and trainers have been struggling with that fact for as long as classroom learning has existed. If only there were a simpler solution...
You already know where we’re going with this. eLearning gives the power back to trainers by creating a framework to develop flexible programs that can better meet the needs of learners, no matter how they learn.
But if the digital age isn’t something you or your learners are interested in, preferring to stick to the tried-and-tested method of repeating-yourself-until-it-sticks, then click away now: eLearning isn’t for you.
Pro-tip: if you’d prefer to retain some form of traditional learning but still transition to digital, you do have the option of blended learning.
4) You have a company made up entirely of robots
Unfortunately, we don’t live in a world where staff members show up to their first day and know exactly what to do and how to do it. There’s always some form of training involved, whether it’s simple onboarding or an introduction to new processes.
It isn’t just new hires either. Companies that remain globally competitive are the ones who invest in their existing staff members, growing their skills and introducing new, more efficient methodologies. This goes double for those in industries that deal with compliance and regulatory issues (medical device manufacturers, we’re looking at you).
But perhaps we’re wrong, and there are companies out there whose staff members walk in the door with every skill they need (and ever will need) at their fingertips and new skills that just download directly into their head. These companies shouldn’t invest in eLearning - but they should probably investigate their team members more closely, because it doesn’t sound like they’re human.
The bottom line
Now that we’ve firmly pulled our tongue out from the inside of our cheek, let’s be real for a moment: eLearning deliver benefits for nearly any organization. It’s more effective than traditional methods, not to mention cheaper - it even promotes employee engagement.
Bottom line? The only organizations that can afford to lose out on the benefits of eLearning are ones that don’t exist. When we’ve engagement no longer matters, when budgets are always infinite, when people all learn the same way or when you have a company staffed entirely by robots, then maybe you can give it a miss. Until then, it’s better to investigate your options.
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