Monday, 17 September 2012

Corporate eLearning and MOOCs

Skillsoft acquired MindLeaders. That was a minor earthquake in corporate eLearning world. Earlier they acquired Element K. Josh Bersin, writing in Forbes.com, has an interesting perspective. He says,

“The catalog e-learning market is now more than 13 years old (the word “e-learning” was coined in 1998, when this market was red hot). Over this period of time technology, bandwidth, and devices have dramatically changed. Courses built ten years ago are utterly boring today. We now expect online training to use video, run in mobile devices, and be totally integrated with social tools and online collaboration.”

Further, he tells us that the more modern formats like Lynda.com are popular over old-style eLearning courses by a degree of magnitude. We like Lynda.com training too. Except that we feel it is great for certain type of courses like all their Adobe tutorials. For others: YMMV.

One key differentiator between the early days of eLearning and now, we feel, is that corporations were very keen on measuring ROI via assessment scores a few years ago. This was part of a larger trend of measuring everything using 6-Six Sigma like methods. Multiple and mini-recessions that followed in quick succession changed all that. ROI is still important but survival even more.

It’s not that measurement and 6-Six Sigma are out of favor. But the workforce churn and layoffs brought about by mini-recessions changed corporate priorities and employer-employee contract forever. Training got hit from multiple sides in budgets as well as employee’s desire to get trained. This is a normal corporate exercise in any economic downturn. If you aren’t sure of your job existing tomorrow, what motivation will you have to get trained for job related skills?

Notes:

1.http://www.forbes.com/sites/joshbersin/2012/09/15/corporate-e-learning-market-gets-a-jolt-as-moocs-grow/ 

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