Considering an eLearning Solution for your Small and Medium business?
Read what our guest blogger Roman Zhidkov suggests you look for.
uQualio® lives and breathes eLearning, more specifically, we believe Video eLearning to be the future and the way people already expect to learn these days. Our cloud-based Video eLearning Platform has been built from the ground up with the main objective of providing an easy-to-use Video eLearning Platform to help businesses to carry out and support any upskilling, training, or onboarding project.
Read more about our eLearning creation software for authoring state-of-the-art courses and programs.
Of course, we are not the only ones who believe this. Roman Zhidkov, our guest today here in our eLearning blog fully understands the importance and the potential impact eLearning can have on most business settings. However, do you know everything you need to consider when choosing an eLearning solution for your specific needs? How can you be sure you are picking the right one?
Read on to find out everything you need to know before choosing an eLearning platform!
eLearning is here to stay
eLearning has already proven its effectiveness. According to the statistics, the global market of eLearning is expected to reach $336.98 billion by 2026. A lot of companies have already implemented or are on the way to use the technology for improving professional skills and enhancing the engagement of the employees. Yet, how to pick the right eLearning software in case you’re an owner of small or medium businesses? What aspects should you consider when making the decision? All the answers are in the post.
5 Important things to consider when choosing an eLearning solution for your business
According to a Deloitte report, there are 600+ eLearning providers available on the market, and their number is increasing. All of them offer a wide selection of features, options, and possibilities. Thus, it can be a challenge to find the right supplier to suit the demands of small and medium businesses. Don't get upset, here we are with our pro tips to help you to find the right eLearning solution.
Identify features and functionality that meet your business needs
Today, there is a myriad of eLearning systems (LMSs, LXPs, LAPs, etc.) on the market. The technology evolves and changes constantly. That’s why the majority of the eLearning solutions provide dozens of features and functionality. First of all, the biggest part of the functions offered just doesn’t fit the small and mid-sized businesses. Secondly, the more features, the higher price.
Thus, you should conduct in-house research to define what features of the eLearning platform are crucial for your company and which ones are just nice to have. For instance, success and data tracking tools, enhanced security measures, test/assessment capabilities are required options while social learning is a great future.
When you have a list of the features and functionality, sort the tools according to their priority. By doing so, you’ll see the whole picture of what you need now and what features will be needed in the nearest future. Not only will that help you save time and money, but you can also keep your nerve.
Define the requirements and explore the market
When you prioritize the features, it’s high time to define the requirements to be met by the provider. For example, if you don’t have an IT specialist on the staff who can manage your eLearning solution (LMS, LXP, LAP), then the support is not a nice-to-have feature but a requirement.
Here is a list of questions that will help you determine what you need to implement and host online courses:
● Do you have in-house trained personnel to smoothly implement the eLearning solution (LMS, LXP. LAP, etc.)?
● Does it fit your IT landscape, mobile use, and so on?
● How many users will access the course at a time?
● Is any software/application needed to be installed to run the course?
● What security measures do you have in place?
● Do the students use their own devices or company devices, or both to access the materials?
Only by answering these questions will you determine the requirements and state whether you should outsource some of the functions to eLearning development companies or not.
After that, you need to explore the market to find the provider that can meet all the requirements and needs of your business. Visit the official pages of the eLearning providers, check industry awards as well as read the customer reviews to make sure the reliability and responsibility of the supplier. It’s a perfect time to evaluate the vendor’s support team, contact them to see the customer care level. You can even use a trial version of the courses to find out if the course selected matches your company objectives.
Focus on a user-friendly interface and mobile support
Even the large enterprises that have qualified staff to manage the eLearning solutions seek a user-friendly platform for optimizing the costs, saying nothing about small and mid-sized companies. That’s why it’s critical for the eLearning solution to be easy to use and navigate.
An intuitive interface lets your employees manage the eLearning solutions (LMSs, LXPs, LAPs) without extra effort. Not only does it help eliminate the mistakes, and reduce the time and costs, but there is also no need to teach each employee how to use the solution. With that in mind, getting a trial version is a way out for small and mid-sized companies. It allows business leaders and owners to understand if it’s easy to access the course, track the progress, pass tests, assign/check tasks, manage materials, and so on.
Flexibility is one of the biggest advantages of small and medium businesses. What’s more, it’s hard to imagine our day-to-day life and work without a mobile phone or tablet. That’s why it’s vital the eLearning solution supports mobile devices and/or provides a mobile app that works on both Android and iOS. mLearning will make it possible for your employees to train and track the process wherever they are at any moment.
Take into account cost-effectiveness
When dealing with large enterprises, it’s a common practice when the all-inclusive eLearning solutions (LMSs, LXPs, LAPs, etc.) are used. When it comes to small and mid-sized companies, the situation is quite the opposite and customized plans are preferred. That’s why it’s better to look for an eLearning provider with a transparent pricing policy. Knowing the prices and features, you can build a chart of investments and the benefit and quality to receive. Today there are a lot of eLearning suppliers that offer flexible pricing options. That allows you to choose the pack of functions depending on the price you are ready to pay and that suits your business size.
Consider the provider’s reputation and industry expertise
As well as companies, eLearning providers can be small and large. All of them have their own advantages and benefits. So, you should choose the one that suits your business and goals. Thus, big suppliers cover more areas of business knowledge, while small providers offer more customized and flexible approaches to your company as a customer. However, you should always check the expertise and reputation of the eLearning provider.
Here is a short check-list of what to ask the vendors for and about:
- References, testimonials, and client's feedback;
- Experience and skills set;
- Industry awards and achievements;
- Lecturers and their expertise.
Also, it’s highly recommended to read the reviews and check ratings of the eLearning provider on the trusted resources such as Capterra, for example, to get the idea of how they dealt with their customers and how useful they are at all. Pay attention not only to the service provided but the quality and applicability of the materials, gamification and engagement level, and other aspects that make education effective.
Though the variety of eLearning solutions available on the market, not many suit small and medium businesses. However, it is better to think about the future and plan for growth and success right from the start. Herewith, it is better to choose the eLearning supplier that can meet your current requirements and goals as well as fit the budget but allows you to scale learning on demand. In addition to that, you should pay attention to the platforms that allow you to add more users, options, features according to the growth of your business.
Roman Zhidkov is CTO at DDI development company. Roman is responsible for DDI’s technology strategy and plays a key role in driving new tech initiatives within the company. He understands the context of the technology in terms of other technical areas, the customer’s needs, the business impact, and the corporate strategy.