The implementation of an e-learning platform can be an excellent investment for the growth and development of the company and its employees. However, choosing the right solution can be a challenge for HR directors and learning leaders.
With so many features, capabilities, innovations, and options on the market, how are you supposed to choose the "best" from so many options? It's not easy. But it doesn't have to be that difficult either.
It's important to consider several factors to ensure that the chosen platform fits the specific needs of your company and provides effective results.
Below are some key questions to ask when evaluating different e-learning platform options:
1) Ease of use:
Evaluating the ease of use and low learning curve of an e-learning platform is key to ensuring effective adoption and efficient use by designers and employees.
The ability to quickly and efficiently design courses, with the help of templates and pre-created resources, is an important factor to evaluate. Additionally, it's important to consider if the platform is intuitive and easy to use for anyone, even those with no prior design knowledge. The ability to navigate and use the tool smoothly and without difficulty is essential to ensuring a satisfying experience for designers and employees.
Here are some questions you can ask yourself to evaluate the ease of use of an e-learning tool:
- Does the platform offer pre-built, easily customizable templates to help in course creation?
- Does the platform allow for recording audio and video within the tool?
- Does the platform offer a wide variety of interaction options and interactive activities?
- Is the platform intuitive and easy to navigate for users, even those without design experience?
- Are tutorials and help resources available to assist in tool adoption?
- Is the course publishing and distribution process simple and efficient?
- Does the platform allow for tracking and analysis of students to measure performance and progress?
- Is the e-learning platform compatible with mobile devices and provides a smooth learning experience on different devices?
- Does the e-learning platform offer the ability to generate reports easily and quickly to evaluate student performance and progress and make informed decisions on how to improve the learning experience?
2) Interactivity and Design:
An optimal e-learning platform for your company should provide a broad selection of interactive features, like the option to include videos, animations, and other cutting-edge tools. This allows e-Learning designers to craft engaging and memorable online learning experiences for students, which can enhance their knowledge retention and application. The variety of interactive elements can also cater to the diverse learning needs and preferences of students, fostering a personalized and enriching learning experience.
To assess the platform's offering of interactive resources, consider the following questions:
- Does the authoring tool provide options for adding multimedia elements, such as audio, video, images, animations, and games, to make courses more engaging and interactive for learners?
- Is it easy for designers to add interactive activities and elements to the course using the authoring tool?
- Does the platform offer pre-built templates that designers can use as a starting point to create their own interactions?
- Can designers customize and create their own interactive activities and elements within the authoring tool?
- Do the interactions and activities integrate and function smoothly in the course and work on all devices?
- Does it offer options to customize the graphic design and appearance of courses to fit the company's brand and style?
- Are there limited customization options or is a high degree of flexibility and control over design allowed?
- Does the platform have a wide selection of templates and styles to choose from or do designers have to create everything from scratch?
Also read: Five Rules of Engagement All eLearning Designers Should Live By
3) Reporting and Assessment System:
Having a robust reporting and assessment system is a critical component of an effective e-learning platform, as it can help ensure that learning objectives are met and continuously improve the learning experience for students.
The following are some key factors to evaluate when determining if an e-learning platform has outstanding reporting and assessment features:
- Flexibility: Does the assessment system allow course designers and instructors to easily customize assessments to fit their learning objectives and specific needs
- Assessment Types: Does the platform offer a variety of assessment types, including free-form writing assessments, multiple-choice assessments, drag-and-drop assessments, and other types of interactive assessments?
- Automation: Do the assessment settings automatically grade assessments and provide instant feedback to students?
- Analysis and Reports: Does the platform offer a wide range of student progress and performance reports, including charts, statistics, and detailed summaries?
Also read: Learning Analytics: 5 Mistakes to Avoid in eLearning
4) Quality Customer Support and Service:
Quality customer support and service are essential factors to evaluate to ensure that problems are quickly resolved and questions are efficiently answered. It's important to make sure the platform has a dedicated and accessible support team to resolve technical problems or questions related to platform usage.
When scheduling a demo, you can ask the following questions:
- What options are available for getting help (e.g. email, live chat, documentation)
- Is support available 24/7 or only during specific hours of the day?
- Is a complete knowledge base with articles and tutorials available?
- Is there a dedicated customer support team?
- Can a call or demonstration with a support representative be scheduled?
- Are video tutorials and webinars available to help with learning?
In addition to these questions, it's important to also consider the platform's cost, data security, integration with other tools, and storage and scalability requirements.
In conclusion, choosing the right e-learning platform for your company can be challenging, but if you pay attention to the key questions mentioned above and consider your company's specific needs, you'll be in a better position to make an informed and wise decision.
It's advisable to focus on finding an intuitive, user-friendly tool with a wide variety of content creation tools, compatible with different devices, with tracking and assessment systems, and with good customer support and service.