Before you start to introduce e-Learning to your business you should have addressed the following basic elements.
E-Learning for the business
Document any existing training needs. If there has been any recent change in your business, new product launch, different legislations etc. then this will generate some demand for training. This demand that can be used to pull through an e-Learning based skills enhancement program.
You must keep your plans in line with the business priorities. For example if it is your intention to achieve quality accreditation then this will demand a structured training plan. If your company strategy is to increase the number of customers then a basic understanding of marketing will be needed by all staff. Or if it is to reduce costs then basic budgeting training might be appropriate.
Look out for any organisational issues that may impede the training plan, political power plays, or inter departmental competitiveness. Also look out for any misconceptions around how e-learning works within your staff, particularly senior management.
As with anything new, it requires some people to change either their behaviour or way of thinking. With some people this can be difficult. A basic knowledge of Change Management would be useful.
E-Learning for the employees
Some of your employees may think that the benefits of being trained are so great that they will embrace the strategy with out a second thought. However this may not always be the case. For instance a staff member who has been away from formal education for many years may find the thought of any training quite frightening. Make sure there are support systems in place for these people.
If you have a large number of employees then creating a personalised training program for each one may not be possible. Ask your line managers to pick selected employees or departments who can then be used to profile groups of employees.
E-Learning Financial Planning
Define your success criteria. This of course will depend on your business. Something that is measurable, exact and time limited is ideal. For instance use the recruitment costs of senior staff over the financial year or the first quarter costs of a new product launch.
Calculate your return on investment. With many of the benefits being intangible it is important to pick areas where clear financial benefits can be measured. These can include the increase in productivity of workgroups, reduction in errors made etc.
By following this simple plan your company will find e-Learning a simple and cost effective way to improve your employee's skills, this inevitably will lead to greater productivity and profitability.