Innovation in Online Learning to Drive Revenue Necessitates Managing More Than the Triple Constraint
Management and leadership in online learning require a careful balance to project manage 3project variables (Time, Scope, Cost) to achieve a successful outcome, but is that enough?
Absolutely not and history is the best teacher. Take famous brands like Kodak, Nokia, and Blockbuster and you can easily be the armchair quarterback and point out that they all failed to evolve to changing market trends.
But why is it that we fail to adapt? Human nature suggests we want control and certainty in outcomes, and we are fearful of adapting to changing trends (taking risks) that require innovation and change.
Learning is even stranger than changing market trends. Take for example that by 2020, Gen Z will comprise 36% of the global workforce. For further context, this age group born from mid-90 to early 2000’s will make up 25% of the U.S. population. So what’s this have to do with learning? This group will be larger than baby boomers or millennials and as you can guess, these learners are not just technology savvy but are nomadic by nature. When Gen Zers have a problem to solve they simply search YouTube for the latest How-To video with the most likes. They prefer consuming just in time vs. just in case training.
The question for learning professionals to ask is – Are we adapting our online learning approach to mirror changing trends, or are we simply managing what project managers call the triple constraint.
The Triple Constraint
While we can be good stewards of managing a learning project to make sure it comes in on-time, with the right scope of features and on-budget that is not enough for success. What is needed is a learning management initiative that is aligned to changing learning habits in order to drive revenue through innovation in three key areas.
- Online Delivery
- Reducing Logistical and Operational Overhead
- Mobile On-the-Go Training
Growing a business typically means incurring growing costs. But what if there was a way to cut down on expenses without jeopardizing the quality of work you do or risk losing the talent you have?
While a training solution might sound like more of an expense than a cost savings, there are a number of ways that an online learning solution yields a high return on your investment. In fact, it’s estimated that online learning has increased income for 42% of organizations.
Continue reading to discover a few ways that the right online learning solution could help your business cut costs and improve overall productivity.
Online Delivery Leads to Greater Scalability
You can’t predict the future – what your business could look like next year, five years, or ten years from now. This can make investing the right training or learning model for you business problematic.
With in-person learning options, you face variable costs. If you only have ten people in need of training today, you’ll pay a certain amount for instructors and courses. If your need increases to 100 people next year, your training costs will significantly increase.
When you choose a scalable online learning system, however, it’s fast and simple to add or decrease the number of learners based on your needs. Unlike finite, physical training materials, digital materials can support an unlimited number of users. There’s no need to print out or purchase more.
Logistical and Operational Overhead is Reduced
As your organization's learning program grows, overhead costs for instructor led trainings will too. More learners means you’ll need to partner with more instructors, dedicate more space for learning sessions, and invest in more training materials to provide for everyone in your organization. Companies that have moved from instructor led training to online learning solutions report a 50-70% savings in training costs.
When training is online and accessed using a laptop, tablet, or mobile device, there’s no need to dedicate more space. A single instructional video with already-created questions and interactive discussion boards plays the same role as an in-person instructor, and you can reach a much higher number of learners, too.
And, because everything is on your users’ laptop or mobile device, you reduce the cost of printed materials and save paper in the learning process. This also reduces the administrative burden for your human resources team. They spend less time coordinating, printing, and scheduling sessions, allowing them to return their attention to more important tasks.
Updating Training Doesn’t Require a Total Overhaul
Have you seen training videos from decades past? The lessons, setting, and even method of playing these videos – like DVDs – are outdated. These old materials won’t appeal to today’s millennial workforce. Overhauling outdated training materials can cost a lot in time and resources. And, it’s nearly impossible to cherry pick portions to update, without changing the whole program.
You need training solutions that engage your employees and stay current with the challenges they’re facing today. When you use online learning solutions, you’ll find that they’re easy and efficient to update. There’s no need to reprint books or update lesson plans. You simply create the new training content, update it via the solution your organization uses, and instantly, the changes are reflected in the online lessons.
This can be particularly beneficial for companies that require regular employee certification and recertification in their industry. Changes to the certification information and requirements can be integrated into your online learning solution with ease.
Learning is More Efficient
Carving hours out of your workday and gathering your whole team together can be a major drain on productivity. Your employees lose hours of work time to sit through concentrated, and sometimes boring, training sessions. With online, self-paced programs, learners can control their experience, eliminating wasted time on material that is irrelevant to their learning needs, creating a more efficient process and experience.
Online learning management solutions save both the learner and their employer time. In fact, it’s estimated that online learning can reduce overall training time 40 to 60%. And, mobile users complete training 45% faster than traditional computer users. This leads to a more efficient and effective learning process that even takes less time than traditional methods.
Instead of your employees sitting in hours-long training sessions, they can easily learn on the go. Maybe they’re going through digital flashcards on the train commuting home, or looking at a lesson with the extra five minutes they gained after a meeting ended early. And, when you’re employing and attracting a millennial workforce, this more efficient learning model is sure to appeal to tech-savvy employees.
Minimize Employee Turnover
It’s estimated that employees are 12 times more likely to leave a company if they don’t feel the organization supports their development goals. Employee turnover is a headache, not only for your HR department to replace talent, but for your organization as a whole. In fact, hiring a new employee can cost six to nine months worth of their annual salary. So, for an employee that makes $60,000, your business could invest $30,000-45,000 just to replace them. For every employee that you lose, your business loses valuable time, productivity, and resources.
Training your employees plays an important role in keeping them on your team. In fact, learning a new skill ranks as the #1 career goal in 2018. When employees are better prepared to take on their responsibilities, you’ll face less discouragement. Employees feel more valued because their employers are investing in their ongoing learning. For every dime you invest in online learning, you avoid paying tens of thousands of dollars replacing your employees. Plus, companies that use e-learning solutions report an 18% increase in employee engagement.
One-Stop Shop for All Your Content Needs
When you choose an online learning solution for your company’s training needs, there’s a good chance you can get a lot more than just your basic training modules. With a top solution like BenchPrep for example, you’re using a learning content management system (LCMS), which performs functions far beyond just providing lessons and quizzes.
This top learning content management system provides administrative tools, data dashboards, and a learning experience that easily integrates with your other tools as well. It’s a seamless one-stop-shop for all your training needs. And you have a central place to store all your content for the future. You gain more resources for your investment, making each dollar you spend go a lot further.
Online learning is a great way to engage with your employees, demonstrate that you value ongoing improvement, and ultimately, cut business costs. When you find the right online learning solution for your business, you’re sure to see the positive impacts both on team morale and on your bottom line.
Are you interested in reaping the benefits of an online learning management solution? Learn more about how BenchPrep can help your team.